DIARY of a 99%-er: The Struggle Between Survival and Creative Expression

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August 28

“Adults are always asking kids what they want to be when they grow up because they are looking for ideas.” – Paula Poundstone

Talked to my best friend, Melissa, today. She’s unemployed as well, enduring the same bullshit, but on the East Coast. We talk every weekend and catch up. She’s been unemployed on and off for the past few years. So, we have a lot to share and commiserate about.

This is the whopper of an experience she shared with me today: She got a temp-to-perm job through an agency where she was working directly for a female supervisor at a husband-and-wife-owned business.

She did not get along with her supervisor from Day One, because….? I’m sure you can guess by now. Her supervisor was one of these controlling, micro-managing women who did not eat and inhaled caffeine instead. So, I guess these kind of managers are not just in California. They are all over the frickin’ place.

So, Melissa just did her job and tried to keep a low profile.

One day the wife, who does not work in the office at all, came in to visit Melissa and started peppering her with all these questions: How was the job going? How did Melissa think she and her husband could grow their business? All sorts of questions. Melissa felt pressured and on the spot, but did her best to answer them.

A week later, the husband comes in and fires Melissa, only saying that his wife did not think it was a good fit. But Melissa surmised exactly what happened. Her supervisor, who needed to control everything, and was already using someone else’s assistant, which was supposed to be temporary, fed the wife all sorts of gossip and negative talk about Melissa. And, that was it. She was back among the ranks of the unemployed, for the arbitrary, “Not a good fit” reason. Business owners can do whatever they want and say whatever they want because they have all the power. Employees are at their every whim. Same as it ever was.
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