Regular readers of my blog might remember that I dealt with some immature characters while I was in airplane mechanic school. The kids in my class sometimes frustrated me, sometimes amused me and sometimes pissed me off. Oh, and occasionally they just plain grossed me out.
It’s one thing to deal with immature people who are chronologically immature. It’s quite another to deal with adults who act like teenagers. I recently discovered that I’m the subject of some fantastic rumors that have been flying around the workplace.
Rumor has it I run to HR at the first twinge of hurt feelings. And came by my modest wealth through something other than hard work. Details are hazy, but I believe the rumor-mill narrative goes something like this: I sued some former employer for an HR violation and that’s how I was able to take a sabbatical and spend a couple of years training up for a career change. Now that I have made the change, I laze around on my days off, nibbling at bonbons and refusing to work overtime.
Anyone who knows me, or even reads my blog from time to time knows that the path to my nice middle-class corporate job was a tough one, paved with fish scales, dusty sweaty nights working at UPS to pay for college, periods of extreme poverty, and some pretty wretched experiences in childhood.
I have long recognized that privilege and luck played a part in my success, but those factors served to bolster hard work, not replace it.
So, I’m annoyed, but then I thought about this a different way, and it made me feel a shred of compassion for whoever it is who started this stupid rumor. Bitterness grows from resentment which germinates in envy. There was a time when I was envious, back in college when I was humping away 5 nights a week at UPS then stumbling to school in the morning where I would try to keep up with classmates whose tuition was paid for and padded with generous spending money.
At the time I was consumed with envy. It all seemed so unfair that some people had everything handed to them while I had to get by on 20 hours of sleep a week. It ate me up. I remember that feeling and it sucked. And, you know who it hurt? Do you think my well-off classmates were suffering anything because of my envy? I don’t even know if they knew, and if they did, they probably felt more sorry for me than anything.
It was an awful feeling and it was entirely under my control. Eventually I got over myself and got happier and learned that pride in myself didn’t depend on squashing others.
So, while I’m annoyed, I also have to wonder about the mental state of people who would observe something as empowering and happy-making as my career shift, which I created through hard work and good decision making, and find something to hate about it. Oh well.
Meanwhile, I want to apologize to my readers for the gap in posts. I am working to build up a bank of blog posts so I will be able to post during busy spells. So, progress, but this week I’m in training again, so, whereas each day I plan to go to the gym and lift weights, then write some blog posts, instead I put my head down for just a minute and wake up when it’s nearly dark and time to go to bed for real.