Word on a Whim

What began as a blog about writing and publishing has become a blog of whatever I feel like writing. Jules Lucton.

Archive for the month “February, 2013”

Twelve Weeks

My twelve weeks redundancy notice has been the longest time ever, and it’s not over yet.  In the new year, I found myself sharing my colleagues’ enthusiasm for future projects but then had to remind myself that I wouldn’t be around to be involved with the development, which has led to boredom and general lack of interest in any of the tasks I am given.  Although there are a few of us leaving the IT department, I am the only one from this site and have noticed that some people have started to speak to me differently, with a tinge of sympathy in their tone, as if there is something wrong.  It makes me think there must be.  Others keep asking if I have got a job yet.  No, I haven’t.

I got as far as a second interview and the guy from the agency named the day when he would phone and let me know … and then never phoned.  That was two weeks ago, and I have just about stopped carrying my mobile phone around everywhere.  I thought about phoning them but left it, thinking maybe if no-one else accepted the job they might come back to me.  Now I think I have seen it re-advertised with a more specific description of the role and the skills required.  I don’t want it any more though, I’ve moved on from that.  I said originally I didn’t want another job in IT – but this was close to home and appeared to fit.  I have applied for several other jobs that are not ruled out by my lack of experience or wrong qualifications, but other than an automated reply from a couple, I have heard nothing.  When people advise me to apply for anything, as I have nothing to lose, I am inclined to agree – I’ve probably told other people the same – but I do have a tendency to completely see myself in the particular role, so there is an emotional investment, and this is what gets lost when I hear nothing.

I have filled in a form to apply for voluntary work at a wildlife sanctuary but have not sent it off yet, in the hope that the offer of paid work might be just around the corner.  The thought of having nowhere to go, and not ‘belonging’ to anything scares me slightly. I started work straight after school and am lucky enough never to have been unemployed and, other than holidays, scheduled appointments, or working from home, I have never had time off.  I even have an award for attendance – a little plastic gold cup on my desk; an award for being a bum on a seat and for my mild OCD about being in the right place at the right time. Now at that age where bits might start dropping off, I am looking for some wood to touch in this office, but it is all plastic or formica.  I guess I’m also a little worried that if I end up out of work for a few months I will adapt to enjoying the freedom and will resent it being taken away again – but then  adaptation must be the key, so  it will work both ways.

The IT manager just made me laugh.  He was faffing around in the meeting room, setting up a projector.  Satisfied everything was ready to go, he walked across the office, stood beside my desk and said in his most polite and deliberate voice; “I have been tasked with presenting to the department a video about the state of the Company, and where we are now.  Would I be correct in assuming that you don’t give a rat’s arse?”  Bless him!

So, whilst everyone was watching telly I wrote this.  I’m glad I decided not to try to stick to writing about writing as I now have far more scope for writing – and no-one has to read it if they don’t want to!

Oscar !?

I know I’m not the only one who was shocked to hear the news this morning.  I could picture it so clearly; Oscar asleep in bed, and then suddenly his girlfriend turning up very early to surprise him on Valentine’s Day morning.  Waking with a start but still groggy, he grabbed the pistol from beneath the bed and fired.  No sound, other than the gunshot – because the first gunshot had killed her.  Unnerved, he fired again and then again – maybe thinking it was just a dream.  I imagined the absolute horror and disbelief when he switched on the light…

The silly girl!  As a hater of practical jokes, and a massive admirer of Oscar, I felt slightly cross with Reeva for misunderstanding him so badly – for not knowing that he would not like surprises.  But I have followed the developing story throughout the day, and, well, it is looking more as though he might have known he was shooting her.

Only last night I watched a video of him advertising sportswear.   Since I ‘Liked’ his Facebook page I get such links on my News Feed.  I confess I watched it twice.  Okay, I’m old enough to be his mother – but there’s no harm in window shopping – and it’s not only that he’s a hunk; there is also the running connection.

Running has helped me to retain some sort of sanity over the years and I try not to imagine a time when I cannot run, and I never take it for granted that I still can run, and I always give thanks at the end of a run.  This is how Oscar first became a hero to me – a guy with the motivation, not only to run, but to run competitively and to succeed beyond all expectations – with no fucking feet!

It is difficult now to read that Oscar has been “charged with murder” and I can only wait for the tragic story to unravel.  So often it seems that geniuses or people who excel in their particular vocation have some kind of imbalance that manifests itself as a weakness in another aspect of their makeup.  Perhaps the intensity of Oscar’s competitive spirit has in some way tipped his balance?  I feel so sorry for anyone who is personally connected, and my thoughts are with them tonight … but more particularly with Oscar.

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