Daily Archives: May 5, 2010

Coffeehouse observation No. 118

Ugh! Someone is running some hardware that is interfering with my Bluetooth! I hate that when that happens!

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Coffeehouse observation No. 117

The proprietor of empresso a little bit ago quietly asked two young women to leave. They each came into the coffeehouse with Starbucks drinks. Why on this green Earth would you go into a coffeehouse and settle down at a table to drink a beverage from a competing coffeehouse? When invited to a friend’s for dinner, do you bring your own food? When you go to a doctor’s office, do you bring your own physician? How very rude. … And the thing is, I don’t think that they understood the breach in common sense.

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Lewiston woman collecting hair to help clean up Gulf oil spill | Lewiston Sun Journal

Lewiston woman collecting hair to help clean up Gulf oil spill | Lewiston Sun Journal

Maine job rate increase lauded | Bangor Daily News

Maine job rate increase lauded – Bangor Daily News.

Motorcyclist in hospital after hitting moose | Bangor Daily News

[A moose usually wins in a vehicle vs. moose crash. Especially, when the crash involves a motorcyclist not wearing a helmet. — KM]

Motorcyclist in hospital after hitting moose – Bangor Daily News.

BIW agrees with Gates: Ships need to cost less | The Portland Press Herald / Maine Sunday Telegram

BIW agrees with Gates: Ships need to cost less | The Portland Press Herald / Maine Sunday Telegram.

Two arrested as Matinicus feuding continues | The Portland Press Herald / Maine Sunday Telegram

Two arrested as Matinicus feuding continues | The Portland Press Herald / Maine Sunday Telegram.

Until now, fighter needed no favors | The Portland Press Herald / Maine Sunday Telegram

Until now, fighter needed no favors | The Portland Press Herald / Maine Sunday Telegram.

Just another day as an unemployed journalist — another step forward

I hate this. I absolutely hate this!

Today makes 14 months since I was laid off from my job at The Record in Stockton, Calif. That is one year and two months; or 56 weeks; or 417 days; or 10,008 hours, give or take; 600,480 minutes.

Give or take. But who’s counting. Phew! …

I’ve written about this before, so I won’t belabor this too much. To make a long story – at 14-month long story – short, I had been a journalist at mid-sized newspapers in Northern California for 22 years. I had been working at The Record since 2006 when I was laid off March 5, 2009.

Underestimating the severity of the downward dive in the economy, I assumed that I would be back to work within three months or so if I made finding a job my job. But three months came and went. And then six months. And nine months. And one year. Now, 14 months.

I have been looking for work every since – at newspapers, wire services, online news services, governments, green industries, nonprofits. I recently applied for a job at a greeting card company, which I’m sure my newspaper buddies will find as ironic as I find ironic. I mean, a long-time curmudgeonly crime and chaos reporter turned curmudgeonly copy editor turned curmudgeonly columnist turned curmudgeonly assistant news editor turned curmudgeonly opinion page editor – you get the point – is not your typical greeting card employee.

Over-qualified or undertrained, that’s been part of my problem. Oh, and trying to find a job in a really shitty economy doesn’t help.

I have applied for hundreds of jobs from sea to shining sea. Seriously, sea to shining sea, and a few places in between. My job search has centered on the West – California, Oregon, Nevada, Arizona and Washington state – and my native New England – Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut and Rhode Island. Frankly, I’ve noticed that the greater the distance the job opening, the lower the chances that I’ll even get an email telling thanks, but no thanks, but I keep trying. Everything has to be about making a step forward every single day.

But – again, frankly – momentum has been a problem. The holidays took a bit of the wind out of my momentum sail – too many three-day weekends that stretched into four-day segments when job websites didn’t post new openings. And – again, frankly – there usually wasn’t many job openings to be posted, even without three-day weekends that stretched into four days.

But things are changing. Or so they say. The economy is picking up. Or so they say. And businesses and nonprofits and governments and everyone is hiring or at least planning on hiring. Or so they say.

I have noticed more and more job openings being posted on job websites and more friends and acquaintances are passing along more job openings.

And I am again gaining momentum and applying for more jobs. I even feel confident enough to be relatively selective in my job pursuit – the greeting card application notwithstanding. (Very frankly, that job would be pretty cool, despite the irony of a crusty, dusty newspaperman participating in something as soft and fluffy as the greeting card biz.)

I’m fed up with being unemployed.

I’m hungry to get back to work.

I’m ready, willing and able to get back to work.

I’m just hunting for a break.

I’m sure that I will be working again. I just want it to be now. Now would be good.

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