Sunday, July 08, 2018

Anthem to a layoff / Appreciating 80's Clapton

Image result for unemployed gif

As most of you have heard, I was laid off in mid-March. It was for the best, to be honest. I hated my 60 y/o boss and her 60 y/o boss, both of whom enjoyed screaming and yelling at subordinates in a toxic, bureaucratic, heavily political atmosphere.  It was a bad match, like when you realize you have a boyfriend/girlfriend who is totally crazypants and you need to get out, despite the reasonable paycheck/sex. I needed them to break up with me for a couple specific reasons, and it happened. Life is too short for that nonsense.

With that said, it has not been a great time to be an out-of-work Wall Streeter. The model is changing for my industry, and not for the better. I looked hard at other industries and other cities, and even went to a franchise convention. Hooters was there! Not sure the wifey would love that one.

While unemployed, I was able to get to the gym quite a bit, because no job. So I had that going for me. As a creature of habit, I set a nice routine. I job-seeked (job-sought?) in the morning, ate a keto lunch at 1130, hit the gym at 1 and scooped kids from school at 3, often seeing my pal Zman there.

I realized one day in May that I was playing the same song every day on my five-minute drive to the gym without intentionally realizing it. It was a song I stumbled onto the previous winter, an 80's Clapton tune that I first heard Deep Tracks play on Sirius. I have come to realize I am a bit of a sucker for 80's Clapton. I love Forever Man, and will admit that when I was a kid watching Spacecamp, I registered the scene where bad boy junior astronaut Tate Donovan rolls into camp in a Jeep cranking that song. I remember thinking that was very cool. I finally got a Jeep in 2001, but I'm not sure I ever cranked Clapton while peeling into space camp.

(If you want to see the scene that I remembered, go to the 4:09 part of this clip here. It does not really hold up. I was not cool at age 11 and did not realize that aspiring to be like Chris Knight from Real Genius was not a valid life goal.)

Anyhoo, the tune that became my unemployement anthem, the one I cranked on my way to the gym every day, is Ain't Going Down, from Clapton's 1983 album Money and Cigarettes. I can't tell you why it resonated with me like it did, but messages like we're all lucky to be alive, and I still got something left to say hit a mark.

That song reminded me to stay humble and focused in my search, as I sought to keep providing for myself and three other important people in my life. After a couple months of keto lunches, pec wailing and job searching, I linked up with a former boss and former colleague who did not know I was on the beach. There was some mutual courting, and things came together quickly and cleanly, allowing me a couple more weeks off and a quick family vacation.

So enjoy the song below. And do yourself a favor and be kind to the next decent person who tells you they are out of a job. You can take the measure of a man/woman by the way they respond to you when you tell them you are unemployed and want to have a chat with them.



I think I will play this song on my commute on Monday morning, but maybe not again for a while after that. Thanks Eric. And thank you, Spacecamp, even though you tried to pretend Lea Thompson and Kelly Preston were unattractive nerds.

30 comments:

T.J. said...

Welcome back to the rat race, TR. Excellent post to kick it off.

Mr KQ said...

Congrats on the job. I'm a huge Clapton mark. I can't recommend 461 Ocean Blvd enough. Every. Song. On vinyl if possible.

Also Derek and the Dominos. Listened to the whole double album tonight. It's incredibe. My oldest brother passed away from pancreatic cancer recently which was brutal. 3 fucking weeks from being diagnosed. Went through his albums with his wife today. He has such good stuff. I've been listening to his albums, drinking, and crying all night.

Whitney said...

Congrats to TR, and more condolences to KT. Life is too easily plucked from us.

I dig “Forever Man,” as well as “I Can’t Stand It,” “I’ve Got a Rock n Roll Heart,” “It’s in the Way that You Use It,” and most all the old stuff. “Hello Old Friend” always speaks to me.

Good night, old friends. It’s really good to hear from you once again.

T.J. said...

Mr KQ, very sorry to hear about your brother. For a guy who spews nonsense all day long on the interwebz, I really suck at condolences.

TR said...

That is sad news, Ken.

Right after I posted this, I found out that the very active and healthy 13 y/o daughter of one of my best friends was diagnosed w/ Type 1 diabetes. Came out of the blue. Unbelievable.

Danimal said...

I am very sorry to hear about your brother Ken. Condolences to the fam.

TR - congrats on the re-entering the workforce. Your pecs are probably less pleased. How'd you end up faring w/the keto? And will you remain? I fell off that wagon after 20 days give or take. Willpower levels have fallen significantly over the last few years.

TR said...

I have been on it for about 6 months. I dig it, even if my food world becomes small. I can get by at restaurants (Cobb or Caesar salad, steak, burger w/ broccoli instead of fries), and I don’t mind eating a variation of the same salad every day for lunch. I haven’t been in a good company once in 2018.

Steak and grilled veggies (peppers, asparagus, etc) is a-ok w/ me. Same for cheesy omelets. I’ve had one beer this calendar year, but a whole lot of dry wine, scotch and vodka.

I think I’m in it long-term, although a segue to paleo is possible.

TR said...

I meant food coma, not good company...

rob said...

ken, so sorry to hear of your brother’s passing. fuck cancer. hope you find comfort in memories of good times with him.

Squeaky said...

I give AT&T 6 months before they ruin HBO. The first intra-company meeting sounds like it was a lot of fun. AT&T executive "I want more hours of engagement. Why are more hours of engagement important? Because you get more data and information about a customer that then allows you to do things like monetize through alternate models of advertising as well as subscriptions, which I think is very important to play in tomorrow's world."

Dave said...

good to hear the good news, TR, and sorry about the bad, Mr KQ. as far as dieting, i'm having success with a week of vacation beer and real food, then a week of trying to eat less carbs in an 8 hour window or so each day. if you can eat in an 8 or 9 hour window and fast the rest of the day, you will lose weight and fast (and you might also murder your family).

TR said...

Intermittent fasting is real! Dave speaketh the truth.

Things commonly accepted as truth, like: 1) eat three square meals a day, and 2) breakfast is the most important meal of the day, are things made up by the food industry.

I never eat before 11 unless I’m traveling and limited.

T.J. said...

Happy Birthday to Orenthal James Simpson

zman said...

You're always pretty limited, truth be told.

Dave said...

i wake up early but i'm trying to hold off eating until 9 or 10, and then not eat after dinner. it's tough but i took off ten pounds fairly quickly. i also tried to drink tequila and seltzer tonight while cooking dinner-- catherine put her foot down and said it was my turn (though her special talent is cooking dinner) but i finally broke down and had a beer-- alex is still at soccer, catherine has to collect donations at the garden, all kinds of things are cooking and marinating, and i can really feel the difficulty of doing dinner with a modern family. beer helps with that.

mayhugh said...

I’ve been doing keto since May 2016. Had zero energy for about a month (could hardly eke out a mile on a treadmill) and then adjusted. I eat pretty massive quantities now and most of my weight has stayed off. Sunflower seeds are a huge staple.

rob said...

trump nominated a dude who's on record as saying a sitting president can't be investigated or indicted. nothing to see here. need a little zjurisprudence for the people.

Squeaky said...

Tequila and seltzer together, that's a thing?

zman said...

It's hard to argue with this pick, aside from the fact that is was made by a moron. This is the type of pick I would expect from any Republican president.

zman said...

"is was made by a moron" is the best thing I ever wrote.

Marls said...

L’Chaim Gheorghies

rob said...

put both daughters on a plane to paris yesterday. they'll be in europe for 12 days. i spent all day sunday in a state of anxiety that i couldn't figure out, until i put 2 and 2 together. i'm gonna be a mess when they go to college.

Dave Fairbank said...

or, rob, you're flashing back to "Taken" and realized that you don't possess the same particular set of skills that Liam Neeson had.

zman said...

So long as he doesn't flash back to "Last Tango in Paris" he'll be fine.

Mark said...

Anybody else ditching work today (and likely tomorrow) during the afternoon to watch the World Cup semis?

I can’t finish up by 2 but my plan is to avoid social media and get home by around 3 and watch the match on my DVR.

Squeaky said...

I need to record them as well. I'm stuck giving a 3.5 hour admin training session for a client. Poor timing on my part.

TR said...

This whole “employment” thing is really crimping my style, in terms of watching the World Cup.

Watching games at a pool bar while on vacation wasn’t bad either.

Dave said...

the world cup is one of the main reasons to be a teacher. i did have to watch a couple games while students were taking exams, but i don't think my cheering affected their grades (they were only electives). i still have occasional "last tango in paris" flashbacks. especially when someone says "pass the butter" to me.

Whitney said...

Dave had buttered wife syndrome

Marls said...

He wants to have sex with everything butter wife?