Day 21 – Rewards for a (No) Job Well Done

On August 28th, my wife lost her job. 24 hours later, I lost mine. This blog is a continuation of the day-by-day chronicling of our emotional journey back to employment. This is bound to be upsetting, hilarious and hopeful.

Thursday – September 18, 2014

What is this an award for? What is this guy even doing?

What is this an award for? What is this guy even doing?

Since I was feeling pretty good about my job search efforts of late, I took a day to reward myself and mostly do cool stuff. Stuff I might feel guilty doing otherwise since it would be time away from finding a job. So, in the interest of balance, my rewards to myself:

1. I did a fair amount of writing in the morning on my second book. As of recently, it is no longer called Untitled Romance Memoir and is instead titled Worlds Apart. None of you should have been waiting for that news as I’ve never discussed this book publicly. Been working on it for a while though. Allllmost done. I can actually see the finish line at the end of the first draft and it is glorious.*

2. Went out to lunch with my visiting-from-out-of-town brother Tyler and his wife, Karen. We used a Groupon, of course. If you’re looking for the very best sandwich in Clovis, Ca and you don’t get a Hot Pastrami from the Corner Cafe then you’ve wasted your time and your money. Don’t be stupid like that.

3. One thing I always regretted I didn’t get to do more of when I had a job was go to Elora’s sporting events. Today, I got to go to her Cross Country Meet AND be the hero who brought all the drinks. All I had were cheap, tiny water bottles, so I made a quick stop at Walgreens to pick up a trio of Mio Fits, which add flavor and electrolytes to water. The kids went nuts for ’em, pouring as much of the stuff in as needed to make the water taste like Kool-Aid. Huge smiles on everyone’s faces. They probably threw up later.

My favorite part of being at the Meet was driving Elora home afterward. Seems like she’s always gone these days, tied up in school commitments. We got a chance to really talk and I’m so impressed by the fascinating, dedicated and exceptionally, intelligently verbose young woman she’s becoming. She is such her own person at this point that Erin and I can take very little credit for her. (However, if you know us in real life, you may continue to call Elora awesome and heap praise on us because, let’s face it, that never gets old.)

4. Played Mario Kart 8. Because I’m not gonna not do that on a ‘me’ day.

Erin told me I’m lucky to have this time, to be able to do these things, despite whatever else is going on. She’s right. Life was easy today, and perfect–it was exactly the way I wish it could always be. It’s logical that it’s not this way, but at the same time it seems a great injustice that no one will pay for me to be a dad engaged with his daughter and work on cool projects and have good, cheap lunches. I admit, even with this unemployment monkey ripping up my back, I enjoy defining my days as I see fit–not in a slothful way, but in a way that allows me to use my day up on the things that matter the most to me personally.

* * *

*I’ve done my research and there aren’t a whole lot of memoirs largely about romance. Either that means there’s some untapped potential there or it’s just a terrible idea to write one in the first place. I don’t actually care at this point. Writing, when done correctly, is done because it has to be done. I’d rather write for an audience of no one than write something crafted cynically for the millions of people waiting for the next vampire romance book.

Since you didn’t ask, the basic pitch of Worlds Apart is this: a modern day Romeo and Juliet story between a Mormon and a Protestant in which they don’t die at the end but get married instead. Scariest thing I’ve ever written. I hope you all get to read it one day. It is utterly lacking in vampires.

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4 comments

  1. “It is utterly lacking in vampires.”

    You know, that fact alone would get you an audience.

    Seriously however, you drove a point home. Sometimes we get so wrapped up in our work life that we forget what is truly important. We forget to stop and enjoy the sights.

    I try to keep a camera on me, why? Simple. As I’m running errands, if I see something that is interesting, I’ll try and get a picture of it. Why? Because. It also helps me put things in perspective. Especially when the images are less than pleasant.

    That and there are some sights that just cannot be duplicated. It’s evening, its raining, a business has their lights on, and the way the lights and the rain mix … it was beautiful. You can’t duplicate that (well, not without a computer, but that wouldn’t feel right).

    Like

    1. Noticing the little and the beautiful things is so much easier to do when your life slows down. I don’t know about unpleasant things–don’t have much use for them, but you’ve got me thinking now.

      Like

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