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Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Goodbye to 2011

This was a strange and odd year in my life. It all began when our company shut its doors. Good news , bad news. One month paid 6 weeks severance, I was so optimistic and happy. I attended 4 or 5 networking meeting a week. Finally got a connection with a guy who had a bunch of channel partners who he could hook me up with. Well I got a job for 30 days and they let me go because they found a guy from a competitor, so they could use his contacts, and couldn't afford both of us. Then the other companies he recommended were not in a position to hire.
I then spent the summer in despair. My boy lost his car his job and in place to live, just having him sit at home day after day, drug me down. I took a contract job and it flopped. Tried another couple of contract jobs that dried up as fast as they started.
I treid to start a career group at my church but they shut it down(I left that church).
Nothing is out there. I ended the year by taking a part time job. Now, one year later I am as down as I was up this time last year. One step forward two steps backward.

Thursday, December 01, 2011

One year and counting

It's been a year since they shut down the branch were I worked. I found a job that lasted 1 month, but was let go when they hired someone away from a competitor. I have had a few 1099 contract sales jobs that were pie-in-sky sales opportunities and now have a part time gig. As you see by my blog this has been almost a 6 year odyssey . I am so sick and tired of the job hunt, career transition or whatever. I know its all about a lot of circumstances beyond my control. I ask God all the time for a job. I don't understand and may never know why this painful ordeal has come upon me.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Repost from Unemployed Christain Blog


Lose a loved one, and pastors will offer comforting words. Lose your health, and your fellow church members will rally around you. Lose your job, and you could be on your own.

The nation’s unemployment statistics are sobering. More than 13 million Americans are out of work, including four million out of work for more than 12 months. The labor force utilization rate, which is the percentage of the population that has a job or is looking for one, sits at 64 percent, the lowest level since 1984. According to the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index (WBI), which measures employee work life, there is growing discontent in the American workplace. The WBI has dropped from 50.9 in 2008 to 48.2 in 2010, revealing increasing discontent with the U.S. work environment, including job satisfaction, trust, and employee/supervisor relations. According to the Conference Board, just 45 percent of Americans are satisfied at work.

No one knows how many of the 13 million unemployed are Christian. A study by The Pew Forum on Religious & Public Life recently reported that 78 percent of the US population identify themselves as Christian, so 8-10 million unemployed Christians is possible. Lifeway Research, an affiliate of the Southern Baptist Convention, has studied the impact of the nation’s unemployment problem on US churches. According to their analysis, 58 percent of Protestant churches had more people lose their jobs in 2010 than in 2009, and 18 percent reported an increase in their members losing their homes to foreclosure, which is often tied to job loss.

Given these figures, much of the Christian community seems to be missing a great opportunity to help the unemployed. Leaders of parachurch ministries focused on helping the unemployed say less than 20 percent of US churches provide any organized outreach to the unemployed.
Denominations such as the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, the Presbyterian Convention USA, and the Southern Baptist Convention say nothing on their websites about the nation’s unemployment situation or offer any seminars to help ministers address the issue. Seminaries such as Dallas Theological Seminary and Union Theological Seminary do not offer seminars on how to help the unemployed. More than 60 of the nation’s leading Christian non-fiction writers have written nothing specifically designed to help the unemployed.

“An overlooked mission field” is how Lynn Guillory describes the unemployed. He is the Founder and Executive Director of Career Transition Ministries and a former HR vice-president with a leading lumber company. His organization works with churches across the country to set up and run job seeker ministries. “Churches do business networking lunches that concentrate on employed people, but they generally do little to help the unemployed,” said Guillory. According to Gary Hansen, President and Founder of Inspired Calling, in the Denver area where his job seeker ministry is based, only 15 of 3000 churches offer any type of outreach to the unemployed. David Rawles, founder of Career Solutions, finds it ironic that most churches seem to ignore the unemployed. “After all,” he says, “we speak of Paul the tentmaker and Jesus the carpenter. We speak about the disciples as fisherman.”

Andrew Oswald, Professor of Economics at the University of Warwick, has found that unemployment takes a greater emotional and spiritual toll on people than other life-changing events. Based on his analysis, the unemployed are more dissatisfied with their lives than any other group, including those who are divorced, widowed or separated and suffer more days of “bad mental health” per month than any other group. He also noticed that those out of work for more than one year actually reported fewer days of “bad mental health” per month than those out work for less than one year. Could a sense of resignation be the reason? Oswald does not know, but the Labor Department does report that approximately 15 percent of the unemployed have stopped looking for work.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Hole in the Church

My church is becoming extremely missions orientated. I mean unbalanced, in my opinion. A couple of months ago they passed out a book, "Hole in the Gospel". This book was a broad brush incitement of North American churches for their omission of Jesus' words about the poor.

Well in our church's zeal to feed and evangelize countries where the problem of hunger and poverty is systemic, they have turned a blind eye to the hurting unemployed in their own congregation. Now, they do give time and money to homeless missions and life shelters, and even embraced an African community of refugees. We ran a sermon series on the homeless and featured the authors of a popular book on that topic. A few years ago, when the crisis hit the front pages, they seem to have gotten the message that unemployed and under employment was getting severe. So, in response we invited people needing jobs to write their job requests on paper bags, folks listing job postings on other bags, then to pin the bags on the back wall of the church. This lasted a short time and the momentum was never followed up on. I guess the "Great Recession," was abated by the paper bag stimulus!

Meantime, all the while I sit in the pew sinking further into hopelessness and despair without any real help or outreach. I started to internalize that this was God's way of ostracizing me because of every conceivable sin I ever commit or committed. I felt ignored,abandoned and marginalized.

So, I came to them and proposed an outreach to the unemployed. Well they ran it by a committee and they pooh-poohed the idea of starting a group of people in career transition. After some further prodding by me they said they would allow me to hold a class in conjunction with other class studies they hold semi-annually. To make a long story short no one officially signed up for the class, therefore they arbitrarily cancelled it the day before it was to be held. The answer I received was that its not personal it's business, more "Godfather" than bible. So, no people in the class therefore no problem exists. Move on and stay the course of reclaiming the third world, because these pampered. spoiled American Christians are unappreciative that they have running water and indoor plumbing.
...too be continued..

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Turning a corner

On Monday I turn 60. That's a milestone no one wants to hit with no 401 k and no job. I am pretty bummed about it. I just see me as a Wallmart greeter or security guard until I drop over dead.
It reminds my of the song "Send in the Clowns," the line, "losing my timing this late in my career, there ought to be clowns".

Isn't it rich?
Are we a pair?
Me here at last on the ground,
You in mid-air.
Send in the clowns.

Isn't it bliss?
Don't you approve?
One who keeps tearing around,
One who can't move.
Where are the clowns?
Send in the clowns.

Just when I'd stopped
Opening doors,
Finally knowing
The one that I wanted was yours,
Making my entrance again
With my usual flair,
Sure of my lines,
No one is there.

Don't you love farce?
My fault, I fear.
I thought that you'd want what I want -
Sorry, my dear.
But where are the clowns?
There ought to be clowns.
Quick, send in the clowns.

What a surprise.
Who could foresee
I'd come to feel about you
What you'd felt about me?
Why only now when i see
That you'd drifted away?
What a surprise.
What a cliché.

Isn't it rich?
Isn't it queer?
Losing my timing this late
In my career?
And where are the clowns?
Quick, send in the clowns.
Don't bother - they're here.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Test, trial or punishment?

I was thinking that I need to write about my last two weeks. I was doing fine until about two weeks ago. Then some external events hit me. Compounded by the fact that the long term unemployment news is getting worse and the stock market on a downward spiral and living in record breaking heat and drought my attitude went don the crapper.

I am trying to pull out of this tailspin. Sometimes I think God is punishing me individually, sometimes I think He is punishing us as a nation. I just don't see much blessing. Then I have to walk by faith and not by sight. I trust God and know that even though we have trials and God does sometime punish., we are still His and he loves us.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Next steps forward.

What we are facing in the new economy requires new ways of thinking. I grew up in western Pennsylvania in a time when you good expect to get a good job for life in the mills and the mines. Actually my Dad and Grandad where railroaders. But this way of life started to erode. By 1980 a mass exodus took place, from all over what is now known as the rust belt, to the sunbelt states to find jobs.

While the shift from industrial to information and service based economy gave us a boost to get us through the next couple of decades. We were high on cheap easy credit and consumerism helped propel the economy in the 90's. The dot com bubble burst and 09/11 set us back but we bounced back a little do to the fact we still had assets. Then the banking crisis of 2008 and the Wall Street mess and our assets dwindled.

Fast forward to today. We are in a jobless recovery and the old ways of thinking need to be refined. I had spent twenty years in the book business. That business is all but gone, replaced in part by new technology as well as usurped by it.

So now hitting the milestone of being 60 next month, I am looking to reinvent and retool my career.

Saturday, August 06, 2011

Work search continues

Gee, after 5 years of searching for work landing a job then searching again. I now have a great opportunity to sell training again. This time with a good organization and a product that is great.
I believe in training. I know that too many companies and business don't do it or don't do it right. I want to help make this country run better and help our businesses become better places to work and better places to deal with.

Monday, July 04, 2011

A life well lived

From Job this describes the well lived lived life.
Job 29:1-25
And Job again took up his discourse, and said:
"Oh, that I were as in the months of old, as in the days when God watched over me,
when his lamp shone upon my head, and by his light I walked through darkness,
as I was in my prime, when the friendship of God was upon my tent,
when the Almighty was yet with me, when my children were all around me,
when my steps were washed with butter, and the rock poured out for me streams of oil!
When I went out to the gate of the city, when I prepared my seat in the square,
the young men saw me and withdrew, and the aged rose and stood;
the princes refrained from talking and laid their hand on their mouth;
the voice of the nobles was hushed, and their tongue stuck to the roof of their mouth.
When the ear heard, it called me blessed, and when the eye saw, it approved,
because I delivered the poor who cried for help, and the fatherless who had none to help him.
The blessing of him who was about to perish came upon me, and I caused the widow's heart to sing for joy.
I put on righteousness, and it clothed me; my justice was like a robe and a turban.
I was eyes to the blind and feet to the lame.
I was a father to the needy, and I searched out the cause of him whom I did not know.
I broke the fangs of the unrighteous and made him drop his prey from his teeth.
Then I thought, 'I shall die in my nest, and I shall multiply my days as the sand,
my roots spread out to the waters, with the dew all night on my branches,
my glory fresh with me, and my bow ever new in my hand.'
"Men listened to me and waited and kept silence for my counsel.
After I spoke they did not speak again, and my word dropped upon them.
They waited for me as for the rain, and they opened their mouths as for the spring rain.
I smiled on them when they had no confidence, and the light of my face they did not cast down.
I chose their way and sat as chief, and I lived like a king among his troops, like one who comforts mourners.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Bad business models

As the good old USA swirls down the shitter, I wonder if it's such a bad thing. Some of these businesses need to go away. Most businesses that are built on exploiting the system have been exposed. Let the decline of our civilization continue because we are not worthy of survival.

Saturday, June 04, 2011

Back around the same corner

Well my new dream job, the one I thought would last the rest of my working life, lasted a whole 30 days.Yes, that's right 30 days! I did every thing required and exceeded the only criteria I was to be evaluated on. Not only that I got an email on Friday saying that I was accepted into the training program and it also contained a comment from the home office saying that they heard how well I was doing. On Monday I was let go. I found out in the meantime they hired a guy who had come from a competitor. This means he could bring in a book of potential clients. They bought his leads. Well however unethical this was to his former company and the treatment of me, it simply didn't matter, business is business. The manager was only thinking of the short term bottom line. This is exactly what's wrong in American right now.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

New job crash

Well it's over as quickly as it started. I was told I had 60 days to prove myself. I was also told he would know in 6 weeks if I could do the job. So embarked on the evaluation period. The criteria was setting appointments. That was the number one objective I was told. If I could cold call and set quality appointments I would go to training. Well I exceeded that goal. Never was there ever one critical thing said to me. I understand they wanted to see me on my own. Well I got and email telling me how I had succeeded and that training was set for June. That was Friday, I went in Monday and was let go. I was only given the reason that they didn't feel I had the sales skill set for this business. What! I was never given ANY training and was not even aware of how this could be evaluated. I believe it was something else beyond me personally. Anyhow after 30 days embarking what I thought was the final journey in my career I'm back on the street again.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

New career

Well I've been at my new career for 3 weeks now. What I've learned in the past has strengthen me. It has almost killed me. I still have issues and regrets. Like Crestcom, why did God allowed those thieving pirates to take my dreams and my money? I need to get closure on that. It's hard to move forward, with that unresolved.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011


I haven't posted this new year. It seems like blogs have given way to immediate/instant places like Facebook and twitter. Time waits for no man. Oh well.
New stuff same old bandits right Hal- gotta stay up with the times ya old pickpocket.