Saturday, April 14, 2007

Temp Work

In 2001 I made twenty thousand dollars a year, now I’m lucky if I can pull in twelve. This is not new. In fact, the majority of people in the Unites States are in a similar situation. You just won’t hear about it in the news. The news media prefers to report information that appeals to a richer audience.

I’m working as a Temp for an agency. I’m on assignment with a hospital doing clerical work. What makes it so difficult is my age. I’ll be 43 years old in July 2007.

Every day I dread will be my last. The sword of Damocles twists overhead, hanging by a thread. Knowing that the assignment is temporary prevents me from taking risks with my money, like getting an apartment or a mortgage, or taking out a loan or credit card for anything. So I live with my mother.

Technically, I am homeless. I don’t own my own home. My privacy outside the few moments I spend in the bathroom is limited to a lock box in a dresser drawer.

Being a Temp is even more difficult when you are surrounded by conceited snobs. Being a temp means that nobody wants anything from you but your work. They know they can put you out the door without even a stroke of a pen. They are as comfortable as I once was before June, 2001.

There is a massive glass fortress of nepotism and cronyism surrounding the very old well established service industries that pay wages at or over ten dollars per hour. But at the same time, there lies within that fortress, a glass ceiling between where I work, and the unseen management.

The one consolation is that you get recycled as a Temp, while full-time employees have no new assignments waiting for them when they get laid off, not if they get laid off, but when they get laid off.

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