Thursday, December 06, 2012
The working life: Old friends who know me well
I have this friend Eric whom I have not seen since I moved from Memphis. We worked together at the Big Company in Memphis and have both since moved on. Involuntarily. I don't know about Eric, but I watch the Company with mixed feelings. I want it to survive so I get my piddly little pension that won't even pay our phone bill by the time we are 65, but I want the people who laid me off to crash and burn.
That, apparently, is happening. I mean, they are not losing their jobs, but they are being shuttled into dead-end jobs. Some of them. The worst of them continue to rise. And they continue to lay off good people. Except every time I get a new invitation on LinkedIn, I know they've laid off yet another person. I have yet to hear of anyone who deserves to be laid off being laid off. It's just the bad managers protecting themselves. I can't blame them for doing that - it's only human nature - but I do wonder about a board of directors that doesn't take action.
I have known Eric for over ten years. My boss and I hired him as an intern, then hired him full time. When he came for his intern interview, he was the only candidate of three who was dressed appropriately and the only one who had anything reasonable on his resume. Honey, if you the only post-college, pre-grad school job you've ever had is as a camp counselor, then you might want to re-think the black pants and fuzzy sweater as an interview outfit. Blessherheart.
Anyhow, Eric and I bonded immediately over our mutual travel snobbery. I liked that he had real work on his resume and that he knew to wear a suit to an interview.
I hadn't seen him for years. Then, the day before I was leaving for the Middle East )to an unspecified country so if someone from my work reads this, they won't know it's me), I saw on facebook that Eric and Dan were going to the Maldives and that they had just arrived in Doha. I messaged him and discovered that they were returning via my unspecified Middle Eastern country and that we would overlap one day.
When they arrived yesterday, Eric sent me a facebook message. "We just got in. You are welcome to come to our hotel they have free or discounted cocktails here in the club lounge 6-8." I called his hotel and he said, "I have enough points that I can get us into the lounge. Free booze and free food."
I made my way to their hotel. Eric introduced me to Dan, then said to me, "I told Dan I knew you would come here because there was free food."
See? Your old friends know you the best.