Reality settles in

I was going to write about how I had tacked some OUT OF ORDER signs to the washing machine and dryers.

I had this whole justification that I was, like, better than my neighbors, in a Raskolnikovian sense. My thinking was anyone gullible enough to believe any old sign taped to an appliance has not yet earned the right to use the technology. They shouldn’t be allowed to use a toaster, let alone as sophisticated machine as a washer.

So by my thinking, with the signs in place, all the tenants got what we deserved. Some got taught a valuable lesson in signage, whilst I got exclusive access to the washer and dryer.

Anyway, that’s as far as I got in that story when I was hit with sudden writer’s block. What was wrong with me? Where was my venom, my glow-in-the dark fangs? I usually carry enough misanthropy to fill a book. Why was it so hard to hate people today?

Then it hit me. I was going to be unemployed soon. The reality had finally sunken in, and I started to feel gloomy.

But now I’m not sure if I was doing “gloomy” right.

To tell the truth, there isn’t any right way to feel. People generally look to me as a rock in a storm. Because I’m cool and collected in the face of disaster, and because my face reminds them of an eroded sea cliff with a huge runny nose.

But what they can’t tell just by observing my constant sobbing at the desk, that deep down inside, I’m also screaming in terror.

But as I say feelings don’t matter. There’s no right or wrong way to feel about one’s impending unemployment. Maybe you shouldn’t say now you know how the Jews felt during the Holocaust. It is a bit of an overstatement, and it won’t make you any friends. Trust me.

A better comparison would be to poor, urban, death row inmate. Redundancy; last meal? What’s the diff?

People on death row have it easier anyway, let’s face it. If you’re going to be executed in three weeks, what’s the big deal? All you have to do is sit back, relax, and die. When redundancy ends, the travails of the unemployed are just starting. We actually have to do¬†something, and keep on doing something indefinitely. So don’t tell me how awful things are from your cushy cell on death row. Try walking a green mile in my shoes.

There clock is ticking. Several of my colleagues have already lined up jobs at the companies that will make them redundant next.

They are good at what they do. There is always going to be a market for people who are good at what they do. Beats me how I’m going to get by.



  1. Simon, you know you can do it. Enjoy this new adventure. It truly is an opportunity and the next step in Simon’s Great Adventure. I hope you enjoy the whole experience. Let those creative juices flow. I can’t wait to see what’s next!

  2. I agree, getting laid off feels like a job unto itself. Then job-hunting is another job, and job interviews are yet another job, a kinda glamorous one except no one powders the shine off your nose before you go out under the lights. I wish I’d been warned about that last part.

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