True story. (And honestly, you can't make up stuff this good.)
The interview had gone well. They had flown me in, put me up in a nice hotel, taken me out to dinner. The ND offered the job, we negotiated for about five minutes, and I accepted.
One of the things we had talked about was relocation. I simply asked what most people would. "So, can you put me up for a couple of weeks while I search for an apartment?"
"Sure, we'll put you up,'" said the ND.
Unfortunately for me, I didn't use the words "in a hotel" in my question.
So a few weeks later I arrive for my new job late in the afternoon. After the 6pm newscast the ND tells me to follow him in my car so I won't get lost. So I'm following the guy and thinking, "Geez, this is a weird neighborhood for a hotel."
Do we drive to a hotel? Nope. We drive to his apartment.
I get out of my car with a puzzled look. "Oh, you're staying with me," he says.
Out comes the sleeper sofa. And not a nice one either, it's like the one Elaine slept on in that episode of Seinfeld where she and Jerry visit his parents in Florida. The kind with the bar that runs across your spine.
So the next morning I arrive at the station for my first day on the job, walking like a hunchback, feeling 80 even though I'm 30. That sleeper sofa was a great motivator to find an apartment quick.
Moral of the story? Be very, very specific when negotiating, and get everything in writing if you can.