Monday, December 08, 2003

American Life - Unemployment

Be careful what you wish for. In an article below, I listed five people I would like to hear from, I mentioned Joe Karpierz, old college friend, gaming buddy, and individual who gave us the name Zrieprakus (spell it backwards), the evil lich in Azure Bonds. So when I get home from Thanksgiving vacation, there's a message on the machine from him.

Not because he saw my note. Rather, he's been laid off from Lucent Technologies. I called and we commiserated (because I have gone through not one but two layoffs since last we spoke).

In the course of the discussion, I found at that ANOTHER old friend was just sacked at Motorola. He's a bit more lofty in position, so is looking for another part of the company to land in, but he's scrambling.

And let's add to the mix a long-time reader of this blog who was put in the situation of having his department merged with another, and forced to re-interview for his own job. Welcome to the business equivalent of the Roman gladiator pits - two gold-color workers go in - one comes out.

All these guys are younger than I am, but not by that many years. It seems, having eaten most of the seed corn, most of the young talent, American corporations are now going after their veterans, at least those in low-to-no management positions, in order to maintain (heck, in order to make) their hideous profits. Because, you know, otherwise they might have to examine their own management decisions, and no one really wants that.

Have a happy economic recovery. But hang on, it gets worse.

American Life - Deployment

Just got the word from an old writing associate in the Midwest today. His daughter's unit is being deployed to Southwest Asia. No, they aren't getting much more specific than that. It could be Kuwait. It could be Bagdhad. But it definitely isn't Ohio.

And our gaming friend in Kate's Star Wars game, the one with disease-control background? He's on hold - should be ready to ship out but no one is exactly sure when or where. They've put his life on "pause". Don't worry, but don't go buying any green bananas, either. Its good to have him around (though his new military regulation haircut could qualify as a crime against humanity), but its not a reprieve, only a delay.

I'll try to be sunnier in the future. No, really.