Somewhere in the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Douglas Adams recounts how the Starship Heart of Gold uses its Improbability Drive to escape an attack. By using the drive, the missles converging on the ship become a whale and a bowl of petunias, which is rather improbable. As the petunias fall through space, the only thought it had was “Oh no, not again.”
I know how the petunias feel.
So, in 2017, I was “laid off permanently” by IBM. My brother the attorney said there was no such thing, but my assumption is that by terming it “layoff”, they didn’t have to report the numbers somewhere. When I called the benefits managers, it turned out I had retired.
This was the most traumatic event of my life, and I’ve been divorced. I was shell-shocked for quite a while, but at least I had severance pay for a bit.
It took almost a year to find a new job because I’m old and my resume is all IBM and not something useful like AWS or Google. However, I finally got a job on an IBM project as a contractor. I became the liaison between IBM and the customer. This was challenging to my sanity, but not that challenging. I did learn a lot of Watson stuff, but, again. IBM.
That project got terminated by the customer and I had about two weeks notice that my contract was ending. Everyone felt really bad, because it wasn’t my fault the system really didn’t meet their expectations.
Oh no, not again.
I got another job rather quickly, ironically at IBM, because now I was a Watson person. On the bright side, I was an employee of the contracting company, not just a hourly contractor. We spent six months trying to figure out all of the documentation the development team had never bothered to produce, and here we are, at the end of another quarter.
Oh no, not again.
I was told Wednesday at 4:45pm that my contract ended that day. It’s a good thing I’m not a contractor, or I’d be out of work! Ah, but as my contract was ending, I was being furloughed. “Furloughed” is “laid-off” if you have a Masters Degree.
So, one job for 19 years. Three jobs in three years.