On September 26, 2008, I was officially laid off from my job. My ex-company decided to outsource the on-site computer support teams in North America. That means about two dozen hard working men and women were told their services were no longer needed. We were given a three month notice. On the one hand, that gave us enough time to put our affairs in order, and to prepare for life after the company. On the other hand, waiting for that last day was a lot like watching a seagull poop on your head in slow motion, but you can't move a muscle.
During the last few months, I've heard the old cliché about one door closing and another one opening. If I had a hundred dollars for every time I heard that cliché, I would pay down the mortgage for the next few months. I understand that people are trying to give me a positive outlook on the situation. I've also been told that in today's economy, I should not see this as anything personal, that it is strictly a numbers game. Well, even if that's true, it's almost impossible for it not to feel personal. Now, in my case, the entire team was laid off, so that was a bit easier to take. I often wonder what goes thru the mind of an individual if they were the only ones on their teams to be laid off. When I have talked to the individuals that were just laid off, I have observed two reactions. The most common reaction is the shoulder shrug combined with a slight tearing of the eyes and the facial expression of finality and acceptance. The other reaction is one of pure bitterness. For this second group of folks, you can be sure of two things occurring during that day: 1) your manager will have the day off, and 2) Terry Tate, Office Linebacker, will be standing outside your cubicle. And, no, he is not there for your dry cleaning.
For the first group of people, it is a time for reflection and alcohol. I would suggest waiting until you get home for the alcohol. You may also want to wait until you child-proof your home. Eliminate all sharp corners in your living space. The last thing you want is to suffer the final indignity of accidentally killing yourself in a drunken stupor.
"... And, topping today's headlines: A man who just lost his job earlier in the day, was found dead in his home earlier this evening. Officials are still on the scene looking for clues. At this moment, it does not appear that the deceased was a victim of foul play. Officials did say that it appears that the deceased had been drinking heavily, and that he was attempting to go thru the Door of New Opportunities as it opened. However, in his drunken state, he did not make it thru the first Door of Old Opportunities as it was closing, and was knocked backwards, hitting his head on a sharp corner, killing him instantly. An official spokesperson for the company that let him go did not comment on the man or his employment record. Rather, the spokesperson only emphasized that the man was not fired, but that his position was eliminated. The man's identity has been withheld pending notification of family members, and pending the paperwork needed to include this tragic event into this year's Darwin Awards ..."
As I write this, it is the second Friday after being laid off. I've got a couple of things in the works. It's a little strange to be unemployed, I must admit. Still, I truly believe that better things are coming my way, and that all things happen for a reason.
Ah, who the hell am I kidding? Thank god for fermented fruits and grains.