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Lost the damn job..can you believe it?

April 11th, 2011 at 03:27 pm

In what has truly become a continuing saga of short-term spurts of employment punctuated by scrambling for ways to earn a buck, I'm sad to report i lost the full-time job writing for the start-up news website that I started in early March.

It took me totally by surprise. Got a call from the newly hired managing editor who simply said they "restructured" and that it had nothing to do with my work.

I'll tell you what I think it is. Of the 4 of us writers, I'm the only one who's not fresh out of college and making $10 an hour. For the other 3, this is their very first job out of college. During casual conversation while 3 of us were working together on-site, one of them made a comment, "Yeah, it's not like we're getting paid a lot around here" and the other one responded, "Yeah, $10 an hour." I didn't say anything, becus i was making $25 an hour. When I successfully negotiated the owner of the company up from the $20 an hour he offered me, I don't think he sat down to figure out how much more that came to when you're talking full-time work.

And so I think he had to ask himself, why am I paying Patient Saver so much more when the others are doing basically the same job?

Now this thought occurred to me weeks ago, so i was very careful to always try to produce somewhat more than the others, in terms of story briefs done per day. The others did anywhere from 13 to 20, tops. I did 24 to 27 a day. But perhaps that didn't justify more than double their wages.

So, I sent the owner an email with my final time sheet for 2 days this week and told him I'd be mailing him 4 parking garage receipts ($36) he had told me he'd reimburse. He owes me about $1,500 to settle up. I sure hope he doesn't try to stiff me on the parking receipts.

Back to the scramble I've come to know as employment.

I'm really kind of pissed because after 5 weeks at this job, I was just starting to settle in, financially. Caught up on some deferred routine health care, got some home improvements done (the 2 closets that got ice dam damage) and even prepaid my mortgage and put some $$ in savings and my SEP. It was feeling close to "normal," even as i still considered this my "interim" job due to the lack of benefits. But i was extremely grateful for it as it was what would help me survive til i found the next perm job.

It's all blown out of the water now.

If there's one thing I've learned from this incredibly frustrating struggle to find and keep work since my layoff back in September 2009, it's this:
NEVER TAKE ANY JOB FOR GRANTED...NOT EVEN A CONTRACT JOB.

Next week I can reopen my existing unemployment claim. Believe it or not, I think I still have about 4 months of benefit checks left, mainly becus I've worked sporadically, which helped stretch things out.

There's still a possiblity of hearing back from either of the 2 places I interviewed at, though since the Deloitte interview took place back on March 16, it's looking less likely. the other interview took place more recently, on April 1, had said they'd be conducting interviews all last week and then would call back a select few for 2nd interviews this week. So if I'm to get a call from them, it would be within the next 4 days.

The author in my hometown is now ready for me to start editing her book, so she wants me to come over her house on Saturday and collect my first check. (I had asked for 3 equal installments prior to starting the work, midway and the final payment due at the end.) But that's just a $1,000 job stretched out for several weeks, I estimate.

So, yeah....I guess I'm glad I didn't buy those dishes.

20 Responses to “Lost the damn job..can you believe it?”

  1. debtfreeme Says:

    unbelievable! I am so sorry and crossing my fingers one of the others comes through!

  2. laura Says:


    Ugh! Is all that I can say. I'm annoyed and it isn't even my life! I am glad that you have a plan and unemployment left. Fingers crossed for good things!

  3. LuckyRobin Says:

    I'm sorry. That's got to be a difficult situation.

  4. ThriftoRama Says:

    I believe it, sadly. I work in journalism as well, and let me tell you, it is not the middle-class decent-wage job it once was. For those of us in mid-career, it's a nightmare. Low pay, and constantly undercut by the kids fresh out of college. My question for them is, what are you working up to ? I'm making the same pay now as I was in 2001, even less when you figure in inflation. The whole field is going nowhere.

  5. MonkeyMama Says:

    Well, that sucks!

  6. creditcardfree Says:

    Ugh!! I'm so sorry it has come to this again for you. Fingers crossed there is a job for you VERY SOON!!!

  7. MonkeyMama Says:

    I just had to chime in and say that times changing and the same fate has befallen people in many fields. Obviously journalism has taken a HUGE hit. But it's been interesting how your unemployment has so much mirrored my dad's. (You were both laid off about the same time, and had a well paying contract job for about the same time period - he hasn't had any bites since then). He's an engineer, but so much of that is outsourced to other countries these days. He's also struggled competing with younger people with lower salaries. OF course, the field has just changed a lot on top of all that.

  8. PNW Mom Says:

    So sorry to hear that! Fingers crossed for something to come through soon!

  9. Thrifty Ray Says:

    That stinks! I am sorry this has been such a rocky road. At least you have a little unemployemnt left...hopefully something comes along in the meantime.

  10. FrugalTexan75 Says:

    Man that stinks donkey ballz! I hope the one job calls you back for a second interview!

  11. baselle Says:

    Ugh what a nightmare. I thought I had a bad day, but you took the prize. Fingers crossed for new opportunities!

  12. Petunia 100 Says:

    Oh, I am so sorry. How frustrating!!

  13. My English Castle Says:

    Oh cr-p. I'll bet you're right about the pay differential. That just stinks. Sigh. But do know we're all pulling for you out here.

  14. patientsaver Says:

    MM, that is interesting. I'm very much aware of the broader employment picture out there, meaning, they say that early on in a recovery (the recession is supposed to have been officially over a while ago), employers are still too nervous to hire many perm employees, so 1 of the first signs of a recovering economy is an uptick in the number of contract jobs out there.

    I have certainly seen that, and of course, I was working for a "start-up," run by an entrepreneur trying to start a small business, someone to be commended I suppose.

    I guess this would be considered a journalism job, altho my background is for the most part marketing.

    On another note, I had sent a brief email to one of the other writers I worked with to say it was nice working with you and was i the only one let go that you're aware of. I figured if he said yes, then my hunch that i was let go mainly becus owner couldn't justify my wages was correct.

    I'm disappointed to say that thus far, that other writer hasn't responded to my email. Possibly becus, this being his 1st job and all, maybe he was nervous I'd get all upset and all, I don't know. It would have been a little closure for me to know, but it's not always possible to get that info.

    Thanks for all your encouragement. I remember the words that a few others have said to me before, that I'm a "survivor." I never really thought of myself in that way before, but I guess I'm kind of like velcro. I stick to whatever I can attach to, and it's hard to get rid of me.

  15. Ima saver Says:

    I am so sorry. I sure hope you find something else very soon.

  16. Looking Forward Says:

    Bummer!
    Hoping something wonderful (and long term) comes your way soon! Big Grin

  17. retire@50 Says:

    hope something good comes along soon.

  18. Miz Pat Says:

    Man, I am so sorry this happened. It sounds like you are better at dealing with such a thing than many others though, and I hope you find something wonderful soon.

    Take care.

  19. Dido Says:

    I'm sorry to hear that, and hoping something good and more stable comes along for you soon!

  20. Jerry Says:

    I am really sorry to read that. Even a contract job without insurance or other benefits is still INCOME, and it can be really hard to lose that. Still, you have the experience and I hope that it leads to something else for you very soon. Good luck!
    Jerry

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