Well, those of you that know what’s going on are probably waiting for the BIG POST, explaining WHAT HAPPENED YESTERDAY, but after much thought, I decided it was probably best not to post what I WANTED to post about what happened yesterday. I’ll explain more in a bit.
What’s going on, Amy? those of you who are confused are saying.
Hey, guess who just got fired? And escorted out of the office?
— Amy (@lucysfootball) July 23, 2012
Yep, yesterday right before lunch, I was fired from my job. Shitcanned. Donezo. (Dunzo? I dunno.)
Now, this would be where I would BLAST MY COMPANY and BE ALL LOUD and WHAT THE HELL and stuff, right?
Here’s the thing. They owe me a lot of money, which I want, and also I don’t trust them not to sue me if I say things about them that they take offense to.
I can, however, tell you what happened, right? I don’t know that that’s confidential. As long as I keep it factual.
Yesterday right before lunch, the HR rep asked if she could see me in a conference room. I knew exactly what was coming; the only question was whether I was going to get scolded or fired. I shut down what I was working on and I went to the conference room, where she and my boss (who didn’t say a word throughout) were.
I was told (which I knew) that child monitoring software had been installed on my computer and they knew been using the internet during company time for non-company purposes. I was also told they’d been reading my blog (aw! new readers!) and Twitter feed and I’d said some not-very-complimentary things about my workplace there, so it could have been a reprimand, but in light of that, it was immediate termination, and I’d have to leave the premises immediately. I’d have healthcare until the 31st, I’d get my final paycheck (and all my vacation pay and unused cafeteria plan money and such) on the 1st, and my 401(k) would remain where it was until I was ready to either roll it into my new job’s 401(k) or withdraw it.
I was then escorted to my desk, where I was overseen while I packed up, and then escorted to the exit. All of this took fifteen minutes, tops. Six and a half years boiled down to fifteen minutes.
Were they in the wrong? Nope. I did everything they said I did. I didn’t argue with them. “You don’t seem surprised by this,” they said. “I”m not,” I replied. And I wasn’t. I didn’t cry, I didn’t argue, I didn’t beg, I didn’t whimper. I signed where they told me to sign and packed up. There was no reason to fight it.
What, Amy? Don’t you know better? Didn’t you pay attention when Dooce got fired for blogging? (Bee tee dubs, she was able to be more honest about it than I am; read that post, and most of what she’s saying is my own personal defense. Which I didn’t put forward in the meeting where I was fired. I was uncharacteristically quiet as a mouse.) AMY! What’s wrong with you?
The answer is, I knew, and I just didn’t care. I don’t have a better answer than that. I was suffering severe job-related malaise.
I knew this was coming. There was something in the air for weeks, and then when they installed the child monitoring software, I knew that was that. Could I have possibly stopped it, by not opening the internet again once that was installed, by only doing work-related things during work hours? Yes. I might have been able to do so, depending on how far along in the proceedings they were. But it really would have just been prolonging the inevitable.
I haven’t been happy there since I started. But it was safe. It was a paycheck; it was close to home; it’s not a great job market; and honestly, I was petrified to start looking for a job and not find anything. It was easier to stay put. Because I was afraid. I knew it wasn’t what I wanted to be doing or what was right for me or what was right for them, but I was scared to get out there and risk what I had for what might be, even if what I had wasn’t what I needed.
I’ve been looking for a new job for the past week. I knew something was coming. I knew it was time to get out there and start applying. I actually have an interview lined up for next week. I can’t get unemployment – since I was technically let go for violating company policy, I’m not eligible (and whether or not I agree with that, completely? Whether or not I get to defend myself? Well, that’s where I need to censor myself, because I’m sure they’re still reading this) – but I will contact my part-time job and see if they have any shifts available to get me some money coming in while I look for something permanent. I have a decent amount of money coming to me from the various final-paycheck avenues mentioned above so they will help me out a little, too.
I’m not thinking too far ahead from there. I refuse to think of this as a bad thing. Utterly refuse.
Me being there was a bad thing for me. Me being there was a bad thing for them. I was being turned into a bitter, twisted version of myself that I didn’t like, but I couldn’t make it stop. I was just so profoundly unhappy that it was spilling out every time I opened my mouth during office hours, and sometimes even after office hours. I was miserable, and I am objective enough to know I was making (most of) my coworkers miserable.
I’m not going to slam any of them. Do I want to? I won’t answer that. I’ll just say, I’m not going to.
This is a good thing. It is. I’ll find something else. Something better. Something that will suit me better, my personality, my quirks. A workplace where I’ll flourish and that I’ll actually not dread going to every day.
I’d like to go into more detail. I would. I’d like to tell you more about whether or not this is fair, and some of the things that happened there over the years. But I don’t know what would happen to me if I did. As I said, I’m sure they’re reading this, and even though I haven’t – and have never – mentioned the name of the company here, they think what I’ve been doing is negatively affecting their image. What do I think about that? Again. I wish I could go into more detail. I’m not meant to be ball-gagged. But I truly believe it’s in my best interest not to. Not because I’m a lady, no no. Because I’m afraid of being sued and/or not getting my final checks.
So, I will leave it with this: it was a bad fit, and it has been since I started. For both them and me. This is a good thing for them and a very good thing for me, even though right now I’m a touch panicked and a little stressy and my chest is kind of tight and also it was super-embarrassing to leave carrying my sad office plant.
I’m looking for something new. I am sure I will find something. I’m very sure. There has to be something out there. I’m intelligent; I’m a very hard worker (I know you can’t tell, because I did a lot of not-work at work, but that’s not because I wasn’t a hard worker; that’s because I finished my tasks in a timely fashion and was looking to fill the hours); when I’m doing something where I feel vital and important, I really am a lot of fun to work with; I’m creative and I’m wacky and I’m a fast learner. There’s got to be something out there for me that won’t make me feel like my soul’s being crushed with every passing hour. I know there is.
Also, listen, thank you guys. You are really amazing, you know that? I tweeted the tweet above this morning and haven’t stopped getting emails and tweets of support from people all day. I’m really humbled. I have some of the best people in the world. If not the best. Sincerely. Also, Ken wrote me this amazing post which made me laugh, and also tear up a little. Shut up, it’s been an emotional day.
So I’m not saying anything more about this, other than yep, that happened. And after I get over the HOLY SHIT I AM MAJORLY UNDEREMPLOYED AT THE MOMENT, I’m really going to revel in it. I’m going to find something else. Something that isn’t that job! Something that I might really like – can you imagine – what if it was something I’d love? I don’t know. Is that possible?
Thank you for being so awesome. Also, if you know of any excellent clerical jobs in the Capital District region of New York that pay well enough I can pay my bills and don’t mind if my hair’s a little unruly, let me know. Or if someone want to pay me to stay home and write things, I’m down with that, too. I wouldn’t mind that even a little bit.
(Oh, also, the next two days’ posts were written pre-firation, so if they mention my job…pretend they don’t. Or laugh at the distant memory. Ha ha! Remember when Amy was employed? What fun times those were!)