Got through my last full week at Ye Olde Publishing Company and now have just three days to go. Kinda surreal to think about that.
I’m in that weird transitional place now—think of it as a corporate bardo of sorts, the Tibetan Buddhist state of existence between death and rebirth. A between-jobs limbo where I’m still physically present at one place, but mentally I already feel like an employee of the other. This is the one time at work where I could technically get away with anything, because what are they going to do—fire me?! Fortunately (or sadly, depending on how you look at it), I’m too professional to engage in any wild shenanigans. I’m a firm believer in never burning bridges, because you never know when and where you might cross paths with your old employer in the future.
Not that I haven’t been tempted to let those bridges burn in the past. Take 2004, for instance. I’d taken a desperation gig working in a BlueCross BlueShield call center in downtown Portland…against my better judgment, but I’d been unemployed for nine months and recruiters weren’t exactly pounding on my door. The job was shit for a million different reasons: long hours, crappy pay, cranky callers, and work so complicated it was nearly impossible to get straight. No two employer-sponsored health plans are identical, so every single call was a juggling act trying to figure out the benefit structure…often an exercise in futility. I can’t tell you how depressing it was to clock into your shift, slip on your headset, glance up at the giant LED reader board, and see 100 calls waiting in the queue. Unless you happen to like spending every second of every hour of every day on the phone with people who, nine times out of ten, were angry about something.
If I’m in the bardo now, that was purgatory.
Worst of all were the supervisors, who took grim delight in micromanaging the hell out of us. Every movement was tracked; if you took a bathroom break and were gone for more than about three minutes, you were grilled. I got in trouble once for logging out one minute before the end of my shift. In my defense, the bus stop (I had to take public transportation because downtown parking would have eaten up every measly penny I earned) was three blocks away, leaving me seven minutes to get from the sixth floor of this high rise and race to the stop before the bus arrived. Miss it—and I did, on more than one occasion—and you had to wait 25 minutes for the next one to show up.
So, when I found a new job, I was still courteous enough to give them two weeks’ notice…but I really didn’t give a damn about anything. Which is why, one afternoon, I grabbed a plate of nachos from the food court downstairs, propped my feet up at my desk, and slowly savored every cheesy bite while studiously avoiding the glare of my supervisor.
Best nachos I’ve ever had, by the way.
Obviously, nothing like that is happening at YOPC. For starters, I like this company and the people who work there. Besides, I’ve been too busy working my ass off to get everything done for the two magazines whose deadlines are approaching. And training my replacement, Ashley, who didn’t know she was going to be my replacement when she came on board two weeks ago. Err…neither did my boss, ha. But she’s doing a great job. I met with her for 2+ hours on Friday for a detailed, step-by-step meeting covering our internal processes. She’s got plenty of info (too much probably!) and will do just fine.
My last day is Wednesday. I’ll miss the team, but I can’t say I’m heartbroken over leaving. I’m too excited for this new opportunity!
Last weekend, we drove through Spearfish Canyon, enjoying warm sunshine. It was in the 80s. We wore shorts and ate ice cream.
This weekend has been a different story…
It started raining Saturday morning and quickly turned to snow as the temperature dropped below freezing. We didn’t get a lot…about an inch, maybe a little more. It created a beautiful contrast between autumn and winter, as the trees are dropping the last of their leaves. Even in our backyard.
Guess who’s going to be doing some raking this week?
That is, if I get a chance, because it appears that winter may have settled in for a while…
This just gives us a great excuse to start using that stack of firewood piled up in the backyard. We’re planning on building a fire later today and watching The Shining, as a matter of fact.
Cold and snow might not be everybody’s cup of tea, but you gotta admit, they do wonders for coziness!