Saturday, April 19, 2014

Layoff and recovery, the end of the American dream, and more



  • hibu cuts jobs across the company. I was one of an estimated 300 laid off in King of Prussia. I'm not all that bitter. Great pay while it lasted, good training, and a year and a half of solid experience writing Web content at a real company, not the online freelancing I had before, so I am really out of the print business after nearly 20 years. No longer chained to a sinking industry. hibu essentially rewrote my résumé, so I got to market myself as a different person from two years ago. 10 days after being given notice I had another job in the same field, this time for a new, still small but nimble office of a German-owned company that has no print product; it's all Internet. A pay cut for now... back to what the newspaper paid. So I didn't lose anything. Deo gratias.
  • Learned on the job hunt: Facts about the modeling biz and scouting for it. Answered an ad and was called in as part of a cattle call for, of all things, a talent scout's job for a modeling agency. Of course it wasn't right for me - the job would have involved approaching people cold and taking down their names, phone numbers, and email addresses, and IF the agency signs them up, you get a commission. Worth showing up for the presentation. Educational and entertaining. For example, only about 2% of the population can be high-fashion runway models, a certain tall height and size and with certain looks, so that the designers don't have to worry about size when making expensive custom prototypes of clothes. Pack up the clothes, go to the next city, and they fit the models, no problem. The window of opportunity for such people is ages 16-22; they can literally become millionaires just because of nature and luck. Prospects can come from anywhere but some people just throw away the chance of a lifetime. A girl was discovered working at Target and was signed up for a TV appearance and several photo shoots just for starters; she blew off the TV appearance because, she figured, someone else could fill in for her just like at Target. (TV shoots are costly; you have to have lots of union crews doing their respective jobs, so delays can be disastrous financially. So this girl was through.) Small thinking; small life. Again, if she was a little smarter, she would be a millionaire now and possibly a household name like Heidi Klum. Most modeling and acting jobs are literally for all kinds of people for all kinds of ads and shows.
  • Holy Week and Easter. This year is one of the rare ones when all of apostolic, “Catholic” Christianity is in sync. Modestinus: It’s always wonderful when East and West can commemorate these holiest of days in unison. By the way, Greek Catholics in their traditional homelands use the Orthodox date for Easter (Greek refers to rite; most of them are western Ukrainians), as I understand Roman Riters in Greece do.
    • A Catholic diocesan bishop will go to Greek Orthodox Easter Vespers. Wonderful! The right kind of ecumenism. Bishop McManus will be the guest of Metropolitan Methodios shown above.
    • But of course there's this reality: Two metropolitans in Greece send an anti-Catholic rant to the Pope. Old stuff to anybody who's hung around online Orthodox. The thing is, while we have defined doctrine about them, seeing them as an estranged part of us, not Protestants, they have none about us, so these two's view, that we are frauds, is an acceptable opinion in their church. When they're backed by your teachings, you are who you are in communion with. Just like I'm pro-Russian (Христосъ воскресе! Christ is risen!) despite the Russians not liking us (and the Ukrainian Catholics joining an anti-Russian revolution in their country didn't help in that regard), because I'm what I am, and part of our calling is working for the unity of all the apostolic churches (yes, under Rome, but ideally as a loose federation of conservative churches, almost like the Orthodox; phase out the Novus Ordo), I say to Mets. Andrew and Seraphim: Χριστός ἀνέστη! (I love saying that at Greek diners and pizzerias in the spring; after a split second of surprise I get back: Ἀληθῶς ἀνέστη! Indeed he is risen!) And better a bishop who believes in one true church than the wrong kind of ecumenist (indifferentist, which would say there's no church). The right kind of ecumenism's great, but the great apostolic family (which equals Catholicism's criteria for valid orders) won't reunite in the Catholic Church any time soon. By the way, the Ukrainian Catholic Church siding with the Kyiv Patriarchate is like when the Episcopalians host Dignity and Roman Catholic Womenpriests to spite us.
    • Easter facts. Of course the theological among us say it tops Christmas, but Christmas won the hearts of the people over this feast long ago.
  • From Bob Wallace: The American dream died in February 1973. When real wages stopped going up. (Right before that, sure, "turn on, tune in, and drop out" to go slumming for a bit, because you had the luxury of being able to drop back in whenever you wanted.) Interestingly the same time the, yes, evil Western cultural revolution that started around 1968 just about completely took over the mainstream.
  • From Cracked: Growing up in Communist Romania. A pro-capitalist true story. Ceausescu allowed "Dallas" on Romanian TV as anti-capitalist propaganda and it backfired. The Romanians, beaten down into poverty by a system that obviously didn't work, loved J.R.'s high life and wondered how they could have it. The rest, as they say, is history.
  • In the news: A high-school English teacher quits over the government hindering real education. Good points and very heartfelt, but libertarians will note that turning kids into cogs for "the Machine" was always the "progressive" goal of modern (post-Industrial Revolution) schooling. It's the left's fault, going back more than a century. Public school really is a lot like jail, and it's hell for a lot of kids, such as the dreamy and creative. Update: she gets it. Can we escape the Matrix?
  • From Takimag: Feminist fallout: a roll call of regret. Most women would be happier at home raising a family, and many are just going through the motions by choosing careers.
  • From Roissy: Social distrust is up among millennials. I saw some of this at the old job. The kind of observations a whole blog, Face to Face, is dedicated to. New to me: "to catfish" means "to pretend to be someone you're not online by posting false information."

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