Before getting back into the, now complete, saga of the monster that used to take money from me every month for the privilege of letting him bully me and call me a loser (because he liked to do that when things got really frustrating for him), I want to recount a conversation I had with my dad today about work.
I had a contract end recently, rather abruptly and frankly at a rather bad time. The hit to my wallet came, what with moving and everything else, at a really bad time. But this adventure 600 miles from my emotional support system has taught me nothing if not the truth of the rule Douglas Adams was sharp enough to make a focus of his fantastic book, “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy”: DON’T PANIC.
And so — and trust me when I say this has not always been my response to adversity — I don’t.
But I asked Pops to read my final emails to the organization as I tried to figure out what was going on. As I mentioned, the strangeness was abrupt. And I’ve had more than enough of the ridiculous tendency in this town to disparage innocent people to ameliorate bad behavior. I seriously can’t take that shit anymore. It’s happened both personally (I know I’ve talked about the First Man I Liked in a While [new nickname] and how callous he was and his subsequent attempt to make it look like I deserved it or some such bullshit. Both to my friends and to work associates. All because he chose radio silence instead of putting on his man pants and having the tough conversation (which, if he had been grown enough to stop and think about it, probably wasn’t going to be all that tough. I’m not a simpering fool that misunderstands the way things are. But arrogance tends to cloud judgment.) ) and professionally. And, Holy God, I have no respect for it. Anyway, there was some insinuation that I was overly harsh or direct in my final exchanges, so I wanted my Dad to take a look and tell me what he thought.
His assessment was that I was pretty direct right at the end, “but I think at that point it was likely warranted. You weren’t getting an answer so you needed to back the little (bad word) up against the wall.”
Pops is Southern and doesn’t have a lot of respect for men who can’t just conduct their business with candor and honesty. Even if it’s a hard talk. I am my father’s daughter.
In any event, it was extraordinarily nice to hear my father tell me that of course it’s bad form to go radio silent, both with an employee seeking answers and a modicum of professional courtesy, and with a friend or lover who is confused by circumstances and just wants to tie up a loose end.
I felt validated. I remembered where I’m from. And it made me laugh at the silliness. And that was like a new day had dawned. It was a good talk.
The time has slipped away again and I don’t much feel like getting into what the creep who used to live upstairs did after he started renting my parking space. I’ll get into next time. But I will say this: people have asked me why I didn’t leave when, in Nov. of 2014, I got an email from creep’s wife — whom I had never dealt with before — that said I had 30 days to vacate because they were “taking the basement back for their own personal use.” (A legal reason to ask someone to quit, but only with a 90 days notice, not 30, which I found out after a pretty quick Google search)
Here’s the answer: I had nowhere to go in a month. I’m Southern and you don’t impose on people not your family. The closest family I had lived 2 1/2 hours away in Southern Md, and the only friend whom I might have asked has a decidedly quid pro quo approach to helping people and I wasn’t prepared to give him what he had been insinuating he wanted for some time (if ya know what I mean). So I ask — what would you have done?
I looked up the law, familiarized myself with what I thought it said, and then called an attorney. The right moves, as it turns out.
But more later. I’m kinda tired.