Monday, September 27, 2010

A Friend Speaks Out

My blog today is a guest post. This note came to me as an email from a close friend, and captures some of the feelings of anger and frustration I've experienced as well. The names have been removed to protect the innocent, but the guilty should read this and burn with remorse.

Yesterday as I walked Chicago's downtown, dodging the masses as I headed toward the attorney's high rise mansion, I began to get angry. Surrounding me, hoards of people were scurrying to make their 8:00 AM start times, police officers were directing honking traffic, and city workers were digging up century old concrete to fix a broken water line. The morning was spewing forth life in the form of work, and money, and yet here I stood without income and health insurance almost a year after being the victim of a drive-by restructuring. I began to question how in the world someone with my credentials, and my extreme willingness to work, can be the one "left behind".

When I walked into the law firm's board room for a quick rehearsal of this morning's deposition, I must have looked preoccupied. One of the company's attorneys, upon greeting me, asked if all was well. Realizing I must be carrying all this hurt, anger and tension on my face, I calmly asked them how important my testimony would be to the success of the case. With their response of "critical", I got even angrier.

I asked them how it happens that their lawsuit is dependent on a man who can't find a job, doesn't have insurance, has no money, and who's testimony will enable the company that fired him to save millions. That took the legal team by surprise.

It took the team by even further surprise when I noted how easy it would be to turn the tables on those that had put me in this situation. How tempting it was. How good it would feel.

The room became very quiet, and I knew then my point was something they too had secretly been worried about.

I somehow managed a smile and said "let's start going over the agenda. You're fortunate that an honest man will be in front of the camera today".

The corporate sucks you dry.

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