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Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Is It The Hair Falling Out In Clumps? Is That Why You Ask?

I met up with an ex-co-worker the other day. She had been laid off several months earlier. Her tan and happy face beamed into mine over a salad.

“I thought it was the end of the world,” she said, cheerily. “And it wasn’t! I don’t think I’ve ever been so happy, you know?”

No, I don’t know; because frankly, since she and the others were let go, frustration has been layered in amongst the work the “let-go” used to do, leaving us survivors a work lasagna heavy on task and light on flavor.

She looks great, this unfortunate, laid-off employee. Unemployment has been good to her. She had a little money tucked away, has a room-mate who has cut her some slack in exchange for a straightened place and dinner on the stove three nights a week. She runs in the morning, works in her garden, walks her dog, goes to job interviews when she can.

Her eyes twinkle when she talks. Her teeth look straighter. She appears to have lost weight and gained muscle tone.

“You look stressed,” she said.

Who, me? Stressed? Little Miss Taxpayer? Little Miss Monday-Will-Be-The-First-Paid-Holiday-Since-January -1? Me? The bus-ridin’, lunch-totin’, cheerful SOB pickin’ up the slack?


Nah. I don’t feel stressed. Why do you ask?

Ack. Don’t get me wrong. I know there are people who want jobs and are unable to find them. Believe me – I don’t want to look for a job.

But could I just be unemployed for a bit?


powdergirl said...

I quit working in July of /08.
Just too damned tired and stressed out.
My life is looking much like your friends is right now. If you can do it, I recommend it!
And no, your hair looks lovely : )

erin said...

I work at home freelance and am a stay at home mom, you guys are lucky you can even talk over a salad. I'm jealous of you both! ;)
I'm eating the grapes my 19 month old threw at his sister and drinking burnt coffee all while trying to edit two dissertations that I should be charging oh so much more for cause these grad students are ass wipes! Wow. I sound like a complete turd.

darsden said...

dedication...No, me...fourth time trying to leave a comment..hell I don't even remember now what you wrote. I am sure I am support of you though...LOL Kidding..

Sorry you have the work job blues and stress. Sounds like you need a vacation to the Gulf of Mexico :-)

Here's your margi till you get here. Have a great Wednesday and stop pulling your hair out.

Helpful hint for you maybe..
Don't go to any more lunches with people not working!

Crazy Mo said...

That all sounds good, doesn't it. Then again, I can hear a small voice that says "be careful what you wish for". Just sayin'.

Chris @ Maugeritaville said...

Yeah, I know, Pearl. If I could find someone willing to pay me 100K to sit home writing my blog and sipping iced tea, I'd do it in a heartbeat.

Ah well.

Cameron said...

You seem stressed ;) Maybe you should take a day off.

Jess said...

I too know someone who was recently let go and they LOVE IT! Must be nice...until then I shall continue my never ending cycle of Monday through Friday waiting for beer:30.

Suldog said...

It's so tempting, isn't it? I used to do it regularly back in the 1970s, when I was a teenager or in my twenties. Just quit, live off some unemployment for a while, veg out on the couch watching "The Beverly Hillbillies" in re-runs while munching on cookies. Alas, the life she isn't what it were then. I'd now be more frazzled and stressed, after a month out of work, than I am working.

Emerson Marks said...

I got layed off in February from a job I was struggling in. By complete fluke I accidently fell into one I prefer, but I didn't half enjoy the week or so off work to do normal stuff in.

@eloh said...

She was pullin' your chain Pearl. But what else could she do? Sit there and get snot in her salad, and maybe yours?

She just wants to be first in line when your company starts packin' em back in.

Sneaky Bitch, be ready next time and lie yer' ass off at how great things have gotten' down at the salt mine.

Have some fun with it, maybe it will even all the shit bits out.

Roshni Mitra Chintalapati said...

*deeeeeep sigh*

Eskimo Bob said...

Hopefully she didn't look at you with 'Doe-eyes' and have you cover the lunch. More salt in the wound please, and add a drop or two of lemon juice. . . wait - where's that lemon been???

Pearl said...

Powdergirl, I envy your position! I would love to stay home, even for a bit…

Erin, actually, you sound funny. :-D I know I’m whining about nothing, really. I worked from home back when I was a court reporter – working at home is hard work! I just need more vacation time, I think…

Darsden, that’s a good suggestion, avoiding folks who are not working! Gulf of Mexico, you say… Hmm! I need to think on that…
And thanks for sticking it out, getting your comment to me – and for the margarita. :-D It was delish!

Crazy Mo, I hear ya. I don’t really want to be unemployed! I just don’t want to work!!
:-D Nah. What I really need is a good two, three weeks off. *sigh*

Chris, hell, I’ll do it for half that (and it would still be a step up)!

Cameron, I think I’ll take Monday off. :-D

Jess, Beer:30 is almost here. :-D

Suldog, I’ve only been unemployed once. Worst three months of my life! But I do remember earlier in life, when I up and quit a job – OK, two jobs – and that was just plain sweet.

Emerson Marks, I was once let go from a job only to have it followed up by one of the best jobs I’ve ever had. I love when it happens like that!

@eloh, good point! Ha! Hadn’t considered that she was playing with me. Wait’ll I get a hold of her!!

Pearl said...

Roshni -- I know!

Eskimo Bob, nah. We ran out on the bill. :-)
And the lemon? Those things are so fresh-smelling, aren't they?

Irish Gumbo said...

I have a feeling that being just a little bit unemployed is kinda like being a litle bit pregnant...

Testimony out there! :)

Not The Rockefellers said...

You're still in Kansas and she's in OZ. Not the prison, but that colorful wonderfully wizardly place...trouble is, is that your shit has to come crashing down to get there...soon enough she'll be tapping her heels on that yellow brick road looking for a way back.

Meantime she misses you the most. :)

You're not a scarecrow I'm just being clever here.

Peace - Rene

Anonymous said...

Oh, the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence.

I love saying that...

I was mowing the lawn earlier...and you know what? The damn grass is greener over the fence...go figure.


Working sucks...but that paycheck pays the bills!

Beverly Hamilton Wenham said...

Poor friend! I wish I could send you a day at a spa or a weeks vacation someplace tanny. I think that woman is very (and unusually) lucky to find herself in such a good situation. It can't happen that often. I do believe that the good karma of all your hard work and efforts will pay you back in the end. I hope you won't have to wait too long! keep up the good work and heres hoping you'll get a raise!

Pearl said...

Irish, either way -- unemployed or pregnant -- the thought of either makes me nauseous!

Rene, clever and silly. :-) I see your point though, and I think that's what really scares me.

SweetCheeks, the bills are the only things that keep me working. :-) Really, I do very much like to keep busy. I'm a little worker -- you know me -- but I need some time off! I'd be in my car heading towards darsden for a margarita if the damn car was working!

Beverly Hamilton Wenham, that's very kind of you! And yes, this person's in a very fortuitous situation. How many of us would find ourselves in a situation of lowered rent in exchange for housework?

James Oh said...

Your friend's positive attitude should be praised and saluted. I guess she has taken it as temporary adversity and not failure. That is very inspiring and motivating for her to response according the formula 90/10, which will definite make her much stronger and profited in the long run.

Thanks for sharing us such an inspiring post.

Cheers and have a great day,

Adrian's Crazy Life said...

I hear ya, but every time I've been unemployed or on maternity leave (which is the only time I've not worked since I was 14) I turn into a huge banana slug. I always think I'm going to enjoy it so much and get so much stuff done, but I just turn into this TV watching, nap taking blob and then I just hate it.

Lisa said...

yes, i can imagine being away from the rat race is having a positive effect on her- meanwhile, you guys are left to clean up the mess- its a hard one this one pearl...

The Jules said...

Would you be one of those dynamic, upbeat, optomistic unemployed sorts who sees two doors opening for every one that shuts, or would you be the greasy-hair cultivating depressive taking root on the couch and living on microchips and blue pop?

Also, you don't have enough to do so have an award:



SSQuo said...

Touche! I think the same, and I hope to make that a reality someday, for sometime!