Unemployment Line or Lottery Winner?

I haven’t shared this publicly yet, but I’m being laid off (along with half of my department) from my employer of 17 years. Thankfully, I’ve been given lots of notice (I found out in October that my last day will be in July) and a nice severance package, but it’s obviously still not an easy process. I joined this company right out of college. I’m very loyal and probably would have spent my entire career there. But, it was not to be. That’s life, I get it.

I got into work with this employer through a prior summer internship, so there was no “real” search. So needless to say, my job searching skills are pretty lean. Today, I attended a job search workshop put on by the Idaho Department of Labor. They did a really good job and I picked up a lot of good tips. This is my first “real” job search ever, so all the help I can get it great.

At the beginning, we did the usual ice-breaker. You know, go around the room and introduce yourself (thanks for wasting my time). Now usually, you go around and tell a little bit about yourself, right? Well, not at this event. Here, we were asked to tell what we would do if we suddenly came into $50 million.   (sigh)   Okay, hold on. At a minimum, I’m going through an excruciating job search. Next best case is that I’m coming into the unemployment office each week to beg for my generous unemployment benefit. Worst case, I’m digging for left-over food out of a dumpster. So what do they do? They taunt me with the prospect of a $50 million windfall that would allow me to relax for the rest of my life. I don’t get it.

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How Well-Rounded Are You?

Thanks to Matt for this one.

I’m quite round thank you very much. Oh…you mean culturally. Below are 40 question to see how well-rounded I am. I’d love to hear your answers. Feel free to post to your blog, give me a shout, and I’ll go take a look.

1. Been to a play: Yes, at pretty much all levels (elementary school through professional). I was even in a play: I played a very small part in a high school production of South Pacific when I was probably about 10 (I thought it was the coolest thing at the time).

2. Bungee jumped or something similar: No way. That kind of stuff scares the crap out of me.

3. Been a mentor/big brother/big sister: Nope.

4. Read at least one of the classics (War and Peace, The Great Gatsby, The Red Badge of Courage, Beowulf, Crime and Punishment, etc): Don’t think I have. How about I watch the movie instead?  J

5. Stood up for someone publicly: Trying to think…I guess not.

6. Been on a major roller coaster: The only one so far is the one at California Adventure. It’s the one that does a couple of upside-down loops on Mickey’s ears. Scared the crap out of me/loved every minute of it.

7. Been to a drive-in movie: Yes and I love it. A truly American experience that everyone needs to do.

8. Done something at a drive-in movie other than watch the movie: I wish.

9. Done volunteer work: Nope, not very much. Not proud of this fact either.

10. Given a toast at a wedding, a eulogy at a funeral, or some similar, meaningful speech: No, and am not interested in doing so. I’ve got big time stage fright.”

11. Been to a major sports playoff game: I’ve been to maybe a couple dozen Portland Trailblazer games.

12. Thrown a costume or theme party: We hosted a murder myster party several years back. It was a ton of fun. Gotta do it again sometime.

13. Been on or near the set of a major motion picture: Nope. Mostly lived in po-dunk towns very far away from movie filmings.

14. Taken a compliment well: Yes, I try to. I’m usually uncomfortable inside, but do the best I can.

15. Planted a tree: I planted a couple last summer, then accidentally murdered one with the lawn mower L.

16. Been stung by a jellyfish or something similar in/near the ocean: Thankfully, no.

17. Quit a crappy job:  Kind of. I quite a job at a gas station when I was in college when I didn’t get a promised raise. Then I went crawling back not too long after that.

18. Been on a blind date: No way!

19. Done something kind and unexpected for a stranger: Nothing of note.

20. Had a major surgery: Does an appendectomy count? I had this done when I was in college. My roommate was kind enough to bring me home from the hospital. Unfortunately, the electricity was out in the dorm and I had to climb 8 flights of stairs after a major surgery…ugh!.

21. Taken a car/truck road trip that covered at least 6 states: Not since I was a kid. We drove from Oregon to Arkansas for Christmas one year. It was not pretty.

22. Been in 4 or more countries: Just made the cut here. Of course, I live in the United States; I’ve been to Canada and Mexico for pleasure; and I’ve been to Japan for business.

23. Spent New Year’s Eve somewhere special: I’m always with special people, but never anywhere particularly special. I want to do Times Square just once.

24. Visited an ancient landmark: No.

25. Been face to face with a celebrity by chance: No.

26. Given to charity in the past two years: Yes.

27. Helped a stray animal: Yes, I’ve got a bunch of bleeding-heart animal lovers in the household, so it seems we are forever helping some hapless creature.

28. Dated someone you met online: When I was dating, there was no such thing as “meeting online”. Despite my pleas, my wife doesn’t really appreciate me looking for chicks online (or offline as far as that goes).

29. Won money on a long shot: Won $500 once in a state lottery game.

30. Won your office/family/friends NCAA tournament pool: Nope, I suck at those things.

31. Won an award/medal (even if something “small”): I was in the “Who’s Who Among American High School Students” in 1986. I’m not sure it’s a legitimate honor—I think it’s just a ploy to get proud parents to buy a book.32. Driven a foreign sports car: No.

33. Been in the front row for a concert: Nope.

34. Attended a symphony orchestra performance: Yes, I’ve seen Boston Pops a couple of times. Fabulous.

35. Caught a criminal in the act and did something about it (reported it, smacked them in the head, etc): Nada.

36. Sung solo on a stage: Never, and let’s not let that happen.

37. Witnessed something supernatural: No, and have no interest in doing so.

38. Covered for someone (who deserved it) at work: No.

39. Overcome a major fear: Yes, I had a fear of flying for many years. Overcame it about 4 years ago with the help of a friend and by just investigating the facts on how air travel works and how truley safe it is.

40. Mailed a surprise care package to a loved one: Sheesh, I suck. No

Wow, thanks for reading all the way through. Now go fill out yours!