Unemployment Nine

I was laid off Thursday after 13 ½ years with my company, through three different owners and several different positions. Needless to say, the range of emotions I’ve experienced over the past few days has been pretty widespread.

I’m not writing this blog for sympathy. I’m in good spirits. I’m getting a decent enough severance package to prevent me from eating ramen noodles and sleeping on the PATH train (for now, anyway – check back in six months). I know people are in far worse situations than I am for a number of reasons, especially people with families to feed. I know the decision was made purely based on numbers and not on my performance, because frankly, I’m damn good at what I do, so I’m not the least bit down on myself. I know I’ll be vigilant about my job hunt and try to get something right away, rather than being lazy and telling myself I have time. This is just such uncharted territory for me.

I haven’t been happy at my old job for quite some time. Let’s face it: Unless you’re fortunate enough to hold a title along the lines of chief bikini waxer for the Sports Illustrated swimsuit shoot, or you’re one of the lucky ones who works for yourself doing something you’re passionate about, few people really like their jobs. But the past year has been very draining to the point of dreading the thought of each day. So I’m trying to keep a positive frame of mind and tell myself that this will prompt a very necessary change.

But the reason why I hadn’t moved on is what concerns me: This job market is terrible and only seems to be getting worse. And obviously, the events on Wall Street of the past month or so will do little to change that.

This will be a completely new experience from me. Since graduating NYU in 1990 and joining the work force, this past job was only my third one.

I spent one year at my first job, was laid off and ended up with the best of both worlds. For three months, I did the exact same job, at the exact same desk, for two weeks per month, getting paid more than I would have working full-time because I was hired as a free-lancer, and being able to come and go as I pleased because I worked by the hour.

Then, after five-and-a-half years at my second job, I was able to find this last job and give the traditional two weeks’ notice, transitioning right from one into the other.

I always regretted never taking time off between jobs. Now the irony is that I could have three days, three weeks, three months, or God only knows.

I always envisioned myself walking into my boss’ office with a smile and giving him my two weeks’ notice, then spending two weeks on cruise control, teaching my former co-workers how to do my job and enjoying the farewell cocktails. I never saw it ending so coldly and abruptly in a human-resources office.

One thing I’m grateful about is the support I’ve gotten from friends. I’m never surprised about good things coming from close friends, because situations like this are prominently included in the “close friends” contract. They’re part of the deal. But I e-mailed just about everyone in my address book who might have any kind of contact, and getting immediate and helpful responses – complete with contacts, information, connections, etc. – from people I’m not that close with was humbling. When people who were more like friends of friends responded within minutes, I was really taken aback.

Maybe I should have a little more faith in human nature and stop being so cynical. OK, I’ll stop being silly now.

I know the cats will be very happy to have me home. But it’s an adjustment period for them, too. When I got home at around 1:30 Thursday afternoon, Trouble picked her head up out of a deep sleep and gave me a look that said, “What the FUCK are YOU doing home?”

So I’m guessing I’ll be updating this blog a lot more frequently because, well, I’ll have more time (hopefully for not very long). And it’ll help keep my morale high and my writing skills sharp.

Oh, if anyone has any contacts for a position involving Web content, especially editorial, you know where to find me!

51 comments on “Unemployment Nine

  1. […] trackback As anyone who either knows me or stumbled across this blog already knows, I was laid off Oct. 2 . I’ve been very vigilant about my job hunt, making a lot of suggested tweaks to my résumé, […]

  2. […] I took a much-needed break from doing laps around the Internet Explorer bookmarks under “Job Hunt,” and from staring at my résumé and wondering if further changes were needed. It doesn’t mean […]

  3. […] unforeseen glut of free time I’ve encountered lately has left me with a lot of time to read, and my girlfriend was kind enough […]

  4. […] rejection, roller coaster, unemployed trackback I think one of the hardest things about being unemployed is the emotional roller coaster the job search takes you on, and this week, the roller coaster is […]

  5. […] a comment » Exactly four weeks ago today, at approximately 11:45 a.m., I was called into my publisher’s office while right in the middle of editing a story for the Web site. I didn’t recognize the woman who […]

  6. […] a comment » As my search for gainful employment enters month two, I’ve obviously looked at a crap load of job listings, having long ago given up […]

  7. […] it or not, in the five weeks or so that I’ve been unemployed, I’ve begun to dislike Mondays more so than when I actually had to go to […]

  8. […] weeks before my job was yanked from under me, I bought two tickets to see AC/DC at Madison Square Garden. The check I deposited today was the […]

  9. […] a comment » Being unemployed sucks, but every once in a while, you come across something so funny that it makes you forget the […]

  10. […] leave a comment » Something that I feared would happen actually occurred today, just adding to the frustration of being unemployed. […]

  11. […] a comment » Not that I have a lot of experience being unemployed, but this has to be the absolute crappiest time of the year to be out of work. Bah, […]

  12. […] a comment » I have a confession: I’ve developed a serious addiction since being laid off in early October. My addiction isn’t alcohol, cigarettes, caffeine or drugs: It’s Facebook […]

  13. […] » I can’t say I was sorry to see 2008 come to an end. A man should not have to lose his job , his bar and his ballpark in the same year. […]

  14. […] a comment » I’ve been unemployed for a little over three months now and, with more and more people unfortunately joining me, I […]

  15. […] a comment » When you’re going through something like being unemployed, friends and family often want to help out. But sometimes, their suggestions and ideas make me want […]

  16. […] a comment » My frustration level is at its highest point since being laid off Oct. 2 and rising by the minute. Head about to […]

  17. […] Anyone who follows this blog knows I’ve been deadly serious about my job search since getting laid off Oct. 2. But every once in a while, in the interest of maintaining a baseline level of sanity, I’ve […]

  18. […] WebNewser. Leave a Comment As anyone who follows this blog is all too aware of, I was laid off from my job of 13 ½ years Oct. 2, and I’ve chronicled my experiences of dealing with being unemployed, looking for a job […]

  19. […] 6, 2009 9nine9 Leave a comment Go to comments Oct. 2 marked the one-year anniversary of the day I was laid off. I don’t have any delusions of being superior to anyone, nor of being absolutely indispensable […]

  20. […] I need a career GPS December 2, 2009 9nine9 Leave a comment Go to comments Since being laid off last October, I have often lamented hearing about more layoffs at my old company or reductions at any other […]

  21. […] good friends at the United Nations), all my financial troubles are history, and I no longer have to look for a job. The source of my $875,000 … thank you, United […]

  22. […] This is in direct contrast to 2008, which can pretty much go to hell. I managed to lose my job, my favorite bar and my ballpark in 2008, while 2009 brought some sadness, but nowhere near on the […]

  23. […] happens when working in an office, too – I had no concept, clue or theory that layoffs, including my own, were impending at my old company in October 2008, which was unusual, because we normally knew when […]

  24. […] have been out of work 15 months and counting. Many people are in similar situations and, even if they haven’t […]

  25. […] e-mail was sent to the address that I’ve been using during my search for a job and, while I was pretty sure it was a fake right away due to the salary, I decided to click […]

  26. […] 9nine9 Leave a comment Go to comments While browsing through the job ads on craigslist, as us unemployed folk tend to do, I came across the following ad under Writing/Editing Jobs that was clearly placed […]

  27. […] February 22, 2010 9nine9 Leave a comment Go to comments I’ve often compared this 16-month journey of unemployment to a roller coaster, and unfortunately, the roller coaster is heading downhill again, and […]

  28. […] I blame the victims March 9, 2010 9nine9 Leave a comment Go to comments Having been without a full-time job for more than 17 months, I know as well as anyone that times are tough. But if you want me to present some statistical […]

  29. […] Nine: Applying for jobs is getting completely out of hand As I battle through month No. 18 and counting of being unemployed, those rare moments when I find a job listing worth pursuing have begun to turn more and more […]

  30. […] of bad news is that the new job is still a free-lance gig. I’d always had full-time jobs until my October 2008 layoff, and I have a very difficult time dealing with the uncertainly of part-time and free-lance work. A […]

  31. […] regain some of the flexibility and free time I’ve gotten all-too-accustomed to in the past 20 months, allowing me to resharpen my focus on my blogging gig and giving me the time to interview for the […]

  32. […] for big money these days, which, sadly, still pales in comparison to what I made before my layoff — is still […]

  33. […] I’m noticing these things more because I haven’t really had a regular commute since October 2008, and my last full-time job was located in an area that doesn’t really draw sightseers. But […]

  34. […] Unemployment Nine: Print is DEAD (at least to me, I hope) The conventional wisdom for quite a few years, since the Internet really began to flourish, has been that when it comes to news and media, print is dead. After about one month of full-time freelance work for a print publication, I hope the conventional wisdom is correct, at least when it comes to my job search. […]

  35. […] seriously hate this job market more and more every day. Just when I think I’ve seen it all after nearly 21 months …  June 23, 2010  9nine9 Categories: business, cars, life, venting […]

  36. […] to the oh-so-wonderful economy, which, as much as it sucks, is a hell of a lot better than layoffs (TRUST ME on this one!). Things are apparently on the upswing, as the company e-mailed an announcement that […]

  37. […] Nine: F… on Unemployment Nine: Three-day w…Unemployment Nine: F… on Unemployment NineUnemployment Nine: F… on Unemployment Nine: A little […]

  38. […] off, there’s the lingering unemployment situation. I’ve been on a whopping total of one interview since returning from our honeymoon in mid-May, […]

  39. […] tried everything I could to fight it, but failed, so I began to consider options. In October 2008, the choice was made for me, as I was one of the victims of the first of what turned out to be several rounds of layoffs. But […]

  40. […] search, laid off, layoffs, unemployed, unemployment 0 Once I recovered from the shock of being laid off from my job of 13 ½ years on Oct. 2, 2008, if anyone had come up to me and said, “It will take you more than two years to find a job,” I […]

  41. […] seems only fitting that just a couple of days after the two-year anniversary of my layoff, I lost one of my freelance jobs. And while I will miss the paycheck, I really won’t miss the […]

  42. […] the two-year anniversary of my layoff passed, I haven’t posted much. I still love writing and still find this blog to be incredibly […]

  43. […] year. Sadly, that’s dead-on accurate for me right now. Two out of every five were laid off, like yours truly. Three out of four respondents said they make less money than they did when they worked full-time, […]

  44. […] when all is said and done, the main reason why I didn’t keep the tickets was simple: I have been unemployed since October 2008 and, while I have been making some money by blogging, it’s nowhere near enough to justify buying […]

  45. […] to be listed, due to company policy, this was the strongest I’d felt after an interview in my nearly two-and-a-half years of unemployment. The subject matter covered by the magazine and website isn’t something I’m particularly […]

  46. […] true, and it has been nothing short of outstanding. The kids will hopefully follow soon. But going without a full-time job for nearly two-and-a-half years and blogging for about one-third of my previous salary wasn’t part of that pretty little picture, […]

  47. […] my hopes were dashed in March. It was the best I’ve felt about a potential position since being laid off in October 2008, but it didn’t […]

  48. […] Oct. 2, 2008, I was laid off from my job of 13 ½ years. On Sept. 12, 2011, I officially became a member of the full-time work force again. Three weeks shy […]

  49. […] that a little more than three years have passed since my layoff, and now that I am finally working full-time again, I wanted to get a few things off my chest about […]

  50. […] I was laid off from my old job a little over three years ago, one of the things that helped me kill time was […]

  51. […] this is where things started to go downhill, about two years before my layoff. I still worked hard because I had pride in the website. If the website looked bad, I looked bad. […]

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