Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Endings and Beginnings

Well Internet, I reckon I just can't come up with some sort of hook for this entry.  Try and tie stuff together all neat like.  Did try.  Can't do it.  But we'll just move ahead anyways.

Six months-ish ago, this was me:

Artist's Rendition

Of course, I don't even own a purple jacket.  But you get the idea.  Yes.  Got the boot. Out on the proverbial ear.  (Although that is probably not a proverb.  Or maybe it is. I dunno even really what a proverb is.) A man of leisure.  Shiftless.  Shifty.  Gravy-stained.  Well, maybe not gravy-stained...but that's just because I have never been a massive fan of gravy.  Miracle-whip stained, maybe.

But no more.  Yes, like a phoenix rising from the ashes, ole' JJ is employed once again.  You know.  A phoenix!  Like this:


Oops!  Not THAT Phoenix! This one:


Striking resemblance, really.  But where is JJ working?  Yes!  Back at the Gov!  The old haunting grounds!  Sort of.  Different organization.  But similar.  Tax!  Where better to work than with those who are officially charged with interpreting the law!?  Yes!  The Canada Revenue Agency!  Rulings!  The technical nerve centre!  Started in December.  Like it!  Lots!  I know you are probably saying "of course he would say that."  But I do!  It's a bit of a logistical nightmare, as I am working in Ottawa, and shuttling to Toronto on the weekends to be with the boys (and the running partner!).  But what are you going to do?  There was sure not a lot going on in Toronto employment wise. And truth be told, the thought of going back to Bay Street was...unappealing.  You know what working on Bay Street for me is like?  You ever see "The Wedding Singer"?  You know the part where Adam Sandler says to Drew Barrymore's fiancee "Your last name is Gulia, Julia's name is gonna be Julia Gulia.   That's funny."

And the guy says "why's that funny?"

"I don't know...I..."

In a microcosm, that's my Bay Street experience.

So there you go!  Its all pretty neato, in the end.  Whoopity Doo!  Yay me! Right?  But before I sign off?  Maybe a couple of comments about my booting.  In number form!

1. The day of.  I get an invite to meet with my "coach" for...4:30 pm, I think.  Maybe 4.  Go to see him and he says, "let's go to the boardroom". Uh...oh...  along with my coach, its the head of the firm and some woman I don't know. Uh oh... "Hey Jeff, this is so and so from HR...Uh oh...

Told my services are no longer required.  "Operational requirements something something..." I can't remember.  Pretty shocked.  Not easy to absorb and appreciate subtleties of language at a time like that.  For me at least.   I told her so after, but I will say it again, I appreciated the fact that the head of the firm told me herself.  Could not have been easy.  I think she would freely admit that she is more of a practicing law bee than an admin and HR bee.  And who the fuck wants to actually tell somebody they are booted?  I don't think she did.

2. After the spiel, everybody goes except HR lady.  She tells me how I am permitted to grab any stuff that I might need today, but that the rest will have to be delivered to me.  No re-entry.  No farewell tour. An escort out.  And not in the good way.  Admittedly, that was hard to hear.  Makes one feel like a criminal.  And she keeps asking me if I am ok.  Which was kind of dumb, because no I am not fucking ok.  Which should I be ok?  Like, I respect your right to lay me off, but respect mine to be not jazzed about that.  Can I be allowed in that moment to be shocked and to worry about how I am going to feed and clothe my kids?  That's ok, right? I think that's ok.  And what is the point of asking if I am ok, anyways?  What are you going to do about it? "Hey, I see you are upset.  Maybe we won't lay you off after all..."  Or maybe give me a sucker?  (She did not give me a sucker.)

3. After finishing getting the things I needed to take with me that day, under her watchful eye, it was time to go.  I rode my bike to work every day.  Including that day.  I parked it in a room in the underground parking garage for which you need to use your passcard to get in. And I have to go get it.  But my pass has been "de-activated".  But the HR woman says it's ok, she will come down with me and open the door.  We step into the parking garage and I say "oh, it's over here..."  She gives me a look like Lorraine Bracco gives Robert Deniro in Goodfellas, when he tells her to go down a dark alley to pick out some clothing off a rack and she is sure he is going to kill her.  Jesus.  Can I just get my fucking bike and get the fuck out of here?  She stays a safe distance while we walk over and I am mercifully able to get my bike and finally do exactly that.

4. I had had a conversation with my coach a few days earlier.  Told him some ideas about maybe changing my role a bit.  Get into more of the bloggin' and tweetin' part of the firm.  Showed him my blog!  And he said "hey, its pretty good" or whatever.  And then at the meeting he was like "yeah, I feel really bad, when you were talking to me a few days ago, I already knew about this but couldn't say anything. "  So that was kind of humiliating.  Not blaming him.  Not an easy position.  I am sure he did feel bad.  But it still sucked for me.

So there you have it.  All in all, it will be a struggle for that day to make it into my top 10 best days.  I hope so anyways.  Yeesh, that would bite ass.

Well, that's it for JJ for now! Catch you on the flip side! Whatever that means!

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