Monday, October 26, 2009

My Last Day


On my last day, you couldn't wipe the smile from my face. The opportunity not to be part of this organization (but collect a severance) was just too good for me. I was bursting with joy. The last time I felt like this was when I was a kid on the last day of school before the long summer vacation.

I was so elated that I worried my exuberance would be met by a lynch gang. I thought my former colleagues were beginning to catch on that I never really wanted to be in this place.

Perhaps it was my retorts, like, "Who would ever want to be in banking?" or "This place is falling apart faster than a snowball in hell.", or "I know one career I'll never try again.", that just didn't sit right with them. I mean, these were people who put in 10-20 years in the institution. They certainly didn't need a snot-nosed "kid" telling them their career choices sucked. They knew it already, I think. I'm sure they kept those thoughts deep in the recesses of their psychic apparatus.

"Okay, is it the end of the day yet?" one of them asked.

"No, it's only 10:15am," I replied.

"You should leave early on your last day."

"Oh, no. I'm sticking this out to the bitter end. I came this far. I'm not quitting now," I said. "I'm not gonna let this dung heap get the best of me."

"Leave now," the woman in HR told me.

You would think the offer to buy everyone a round of drinks would have encouraged a lot more people to show up to the bar at the end of the day. But I'm sure the two others who came to wish me well brought stories back to the office about what they had missed.

"Hey, good luck," one them wished me heartily. "I'll take that mojito in a to-go cup," he said to the bartender. What a joker. I'll certainly miss the UPS guy.

My last day was definitely quite different than my first day of my new life. I woke up (later than usual), went to the gym, showered, had a nice breakfast and then looked over the to-do list my wife had already assembled.

It was brief and to the point. On the top, she wrote lovingly: File for unemployment. And I used to think only losers did that.

Hey, wait a minute.

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