Brace Yourself

Posted: December 12, 2013 in Family, Health, Humor, Migraine, Uncategorized
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I once worked at a small biotech startup. I loved the job, and I worked with some interesting people. I had a close working relationship and friendship with my boss. That kind of thing happens in a business with very few employees. Unfortunately, the president of the company was an overbearing weasel who liked to stab people in the back. I don’t care for that kind of thing, just like most other non-backstabbing, un-weasely people.

We generally worked smoothly and steadily, enjoying the setting up of a new lab that would produce a new and (we thought) revolutionary product. We laughed and talked, all while getting work done. Productivity improves with job satisfaction, it would seem. Happy = worky. But there was always this dark cloud hanging over us. The Prez didn’t work with us all the time. He actually lived in another state, and only drove in once a week or so, and would stay and work a couple days at a time. A good idea for a burgeoning business, but in this case, not for the employees.

We dreaded his visits. Every week someone would ask if anyone knew when he was going to show up. We often didn’t know until the day he was on his way, or the day before. That kind of short notice only enhanced the dread, as if each day were a new mine field all its own. And when he would finally show up, it was a nightmare. The Prez would bounce in with a smile glued on, begin second guessing all of our work since he’d last visited, and make numerous changes that made no sense to any of us, except that they seemed orchestrated to stamp his power onto the process. Same result, but done his way. Waste an entire day’s work for no good reason. I would repeat the mantra, “He’s the president. Let him do what he wants.”

But as I said, it was a very relaxed environment, in terms of the hierarchy. And even if it weren’t, I’m not one to watch certain things happen and keep my mouth shut. He had picked one particular employee to go fishing and drink beer with him. I think he was lonely and she didn’t have a family, and it was a perfectly platonic, safe relationship. For him. She would tell us how she felt unable to say no to his fishing invitations. And afterward, he would join my boss and me in the lab to begin the backstabbing of our coworker. She was a woman with an androgynous appearance. She was comfortable in her skin, and we all liked her. When he began to make fun of her the very day after he had gone fishing and pretending to be her friend, I called him on it. I told him that it was not ok to pretend to be her friend to her face and make fun of her when she wasn’t around. When he attempted to brush it off, I asked him if I could invite her to join us while he finished his joke. There were other similar occasions. Unfortunately, I just can’t abide a liar or a creep. He was both.

Walking in one morning when Prez was already at work, I knew something wasn’t right. He was never there before me. And he didn’t greet me. Not that I cared, since I thought him odious. But it was out of character. And then the chief of police showed up. It was a small town. Everyone knew who the Chief was by sight. They shut the door. They opened the door. Prez called me into his office. I walked in. He unceremoniously handed me an envelope. When I asked what it was, he ordered me to read it. Upon reading the letter, I discovered that I was being fired. For the first (and only) time in my adult life, I was being fired, and the weasel didn’t even have the huevos to say it to me. For goodness’ sake, I was standing right in front of him, and he makes me read a piece of paper? When I asked why, he told me he wasn’t going to get into it with me. And he didn’t need to, because the truth of the matter is that in that state, an employer needs no reason to fire you.

He then imperiously informed me that the Chief of Police would be escorting me to gather my belongings, making sure I didn’t take anything belonging to the company, and showing me the door. They would mail me my final check. I was horrified. I am an honest person. I have never stolen from an employer! And I wouldn’t feel the freedom to do it just because I was fired! But, see, that’s where we differed. He probably would’ve, and expected the same from others.

On my way out, as I passed my boss’ office, I told him goodbye. He clearly didn’t know what had just happened, by the strange look he gave me. And then I went home. It wasn’t until I got home and didn’t know what to do with myself that I called my husband. And as soon as I bluntly told him, “I just got fired.” He freaked. That was enough to make me finally cry. I’m not a crybaby. We ladies sometimes cry when we are angry, stressed, all kinds of things. It’s a stress release mechanism.

A couple hours later, I got a call from my boss telling me how upset he was, and that he had known absolutely nothing about what had transpired. He had managed to find out the secret reason for my termination. Dread. Yes, dread. The Prez had begun to dread coming to our facility, because of me. Because I called him on his bulls*** every time it came up in my presence, he wasn’t free to operate as the you-know-what he was accustomed to being everywhere else. I couldn’t believe it.

I eventually got over the shock, and found another job. But it took me a very long time. My boss had told me to use him as a reference, but after awhile, we figured out that the Prez was getting the reference requests from the fax and taking the calls without transferring them to my boss. He kept me from getting another job for a long time.

But that’s ok. I believe everything happens for a reason. The Prez was eventually forced out of the company by his investors. The last I heard, it was doing well. And my life went on. Bigger and better things, as they say. I learned a lot from the experience. For one thing, if first thing in the morning, your boss acts completely out of character, brace yourself.

This post was inspired by The Daily Prompt.

  1. Lost | says:

    […] Brace Yourself | 6 of One… […]

  2. Good for you, for standing up for what is right! Karma always get them in the end, that is what I say! I was let go from a job after my boss, who was a psychiatrist, Wes spending all his drug trial money and then could not afford to pay me. He was arrested two years later for having sex with a patient. Karma!

    • relovertigo says:

      Oh my gosh! That is awful! You know when this happened to me, I really tried to see it as something positive. He did me a favor by kicking me to the curb. I was happier without that dread, but I missed my job. But, like I said, I had better jobs later on.

  3. […] Prompt: Unexpected – Move On and Tear apart Clouds 106. Daily Prompt: Loss | As I See It 107. Brace Yourself | 6 of One… 108. The Loss. | Forlorn Hope: A Diary Of A Broken Heart 109. Grief Shock Strike | CreativeFix 110. […]

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