Following is a transcript of an interview dated 01/18/2017 with a random, everyday millennial named Bridget. She was born in the late 80s and currently works as a chef in a major US city. The transcription was conducted in person and reviewed and edited on scene with the interviewee.
Interviewer: Good morning, Bridget. Thanks for allowing us the opportunity to interview you this morning.
Bridget: Its not a problem at all. Not everyday you get interviewed!
Interviewer: Yes, well, Bridget, tell us about yourself.
Bridget: Let’s see. 27 years old. Single. Currently work two jobs. I have my own apartment, but only because I recently broke up with boyfriend and I’m expecting to have a friend from home move in with me in a couple weeks. I have a cat named Lila who is my princess. I think that’s about it.
Interviewer: You mention working two jobs. What do you do?
Bridget: Well my real job is line cook. I don’t think I can say the name of the restaurant, but its a pretty nice restaurant. It doesn’t pay too well so I also work at another little restaurant. It’s pretty popular across the country. Kinda like fast food but not really. Can’t say the name but everybody’s probably heard of it. Its pretty laid back and they let me pick my own hours which is good because the other job is really demanding. Like crazy hours.
Interviewer: How many hours do you work a week?
Bridget: I have no idea. I’m salaried so I don’t think about it. But the other job I only work 4 to 8 hours a week. You know, just one night or shift on my day off, just to help out with the bills.
Interviewer: Like a weekend job, or you mention day off as in singular?
Bridget: Yeah, no weekends. That’s our busy time. I get one day off in the middle of the week. I wish I didn’t have to but I’m saving up for a car. Easily 60 hours a week though. Easily.
Interviewer: Oh, that’s fantastic you are saving up for a car. Does that mean you’ve been getting around without one?
Bridget: Yeah, I mean I mostly use public transportation. But its really hard to carry groceries and like, I never get to go home and visit my family, friends.
Interviewer: You mention needing the second job to help out with bills and also to save for the car. Do you mind telling us a little about your financial situation?
Bridget: I’m not going to get a car. I wish. Most of my money goes to rent. I had like a grand saved but my boyfriend moved out and I’m stuck paying for a month rent by myself. And rent is like 2 grand. So there goes all of it. Let’s see what else. I have like 40,000 in student loans. I have a credit card but I never use it. Rest of my money goes to getting to work and food. That’s from my first job though, you know. The other is like, money in my savings. Or at least I try.
Interviewer: Two grand is pretty hefty rent. Is that typical of where you live? Do you think you can find cheaper?
Bridget: Typical. Its a pretty expensive city. Its not a nice place, but its not terrible either. Not like my last place. It was dangerous to go outside at night and had bugs and stuff.
Interviewer: And how much was that place?
Bridget: $1500 a month.
Interviewer: Have you considered living in a different city?
Bridget: Yes and no. I mean, I did live in a different city. Rent was cheaper but the jobs paid less. And there wasn’t as many. And nobody was hiring. And I also lived back at home but my parents had to drive me because there was no buses or anything. Its just not worth it. It sucks here but at least its a good restaurant, I have my own place, I can afford my student loans. I just don’t know if I can keep this up… all my life.
Interviewer: You’ll be okay, I’m sure. What are your career goals? Where do you see yourself in 10, 20 years?
Bridget: 10 years I see myself exactly where I am. Other than housing and food and stuff, the rest of my money goes to student loans and I’m on some sort of extended plan. So its like 20 or 30 years until its gone and I can finally afford anything. But like, I don’t know. I want to be a head chef or open up my own restaurant someday. I probably won’t be at the same place. Oh, and single still [laughing].
Interviewer: You don’t think you’ll meet the right one in the next 10 years?
Bridget: No. Not with my hours [laughing]. Unless he works with me I’ll never get to see him. Plus I look like I never slept in my life and I got no money. So I’m not sure who would want that – I’m a real prize! [laughing]
Interviewer: Well, you might be a head chef someday or have your own restaurant.
Bridget: Yeah, I don’t know about that. Head chef maybe. But its tough. There’s just too many. I like to think I’m good, but there’s just too many. And they are older. And not to play the gender card, but its mostly men.
Interviewer: Do you think that can work to your advantage?
Bridget: Maybe. Ideally, yeah. But realistically, I don’t think there is a huge push for change behind the kitchen doors. Most restaurant owners are jerks too. And drug addicts.
Interviewer: It’s a good thing you didn’t share the name of the restaurant.
Bridget: [laughing] Yeah I know, right? But seriously, its a thing. I’ve seen it in most restaurants. The owners are all well-off and drugged up. I guess the kitchen isn’t much better because we are all stressed out beyond belief. But I guess you can say the whole industry has a drug problem.
Interviewer: Do you do any drugs?
Bridget: No, I can’t afford it [laughing]. I used to drink a lot, but I stopped because I was gaining too much weight. I smoke sometimes. Cigarettes. I’m not a smoker, but I do when I work.
Interviewer: I want to jump back to education if you don’t mind. You mentioned you had a lot of student loans. Did you regret your choice in major? Would you go back and change it if you could?
Bridget: I didn’t go to college, so no. It was culinary school. A pretty good one, but not the best. I regretted not going to a better one because I might have a better job maybe as a head chef, but my loans would be more so I don’t know. I didn’t do too good in high school so I’m not sure if I could do college, but I sometimes thought about being a nurse or something.
Interviewer: Did you ever consider going back for nursing?
Bridget: I don’t want to be a nurse [laughing]. I want to be a chef. I just said nursing because one of my friends from High School is one and she has a house and family and stuff. You know, living a normal life. I’m not actually interested in it. And its probably too hard and costs too much. This is what it is. I’ve come to terms about it.
Interviewer: So, you are more interested in the lifestyle that comes with a higher paying job and not the job itself?
Bridget: Exactly. Like, I don’t know how they can afford it. It just seems so foreign to me. Houses are like a million dollars in this city so I’ll never own one. And having kids. Unless you are a doctor or lawyer or something…
Interviewer: I see. You mentioned you came to terms with it. Can you explain?
Bridget: I think we have to find our own happiness. This is my situation. I’m poor. I’m tired. I won’t have anything. So I got to find it when I can get it, I guess. I’m happy though. I like my job.
Interviewer: That’s a good attitude to have. Not a lot of people can say the same.
Bridget: They could though. They just have to accept it.
Interviewer: I think that’s great advice to end the interview with. Do you have any last words?
Bridget: Sure. Be happy with what you have… but vote for politicians who can fix student loans. Oh, and insurance. Because its getting ridiculous.
Interviewer: Do you have insurance?
Interviewer: Anything else to add?
Interviewer: Okay, well thanks Bridget for taking the time to do the interview with us. I’m sure the readers will love reading what you have to say.
Bridget: Thank you! Bye everyone!
If you are a millennial and interested in an interview, please mention it in the comments or email us directly. We would be interested in hearing your story.