Many’s the time I’ve been mistaken
And many times confused
I’ve finished my online job applications routine for the day. A total of six. My goal is no fewer than three a day, every day, and thus far I’ve stuck to it since the day last August when I was laid off. Thus, at minimum I’ve filled out no fewer than 744 applications, with the actual number doubtless far higher as most days I’ve done five or more. Out of which I’ve had, as best as I can recall, less than a dozen first interviews, three second interviews, one third interview… and nothing beyond that. Unless you count the dozens of “we’ll get back to you by such-and-such date” that almost invariably translate into said date apparently not present on the promiser’s calendar.
Yes and I’ve often felt forsaken
And certainly misused
It’s interesting, although that may not be the most accurate word, how people react when they learn I’m on unemployment. I’ve lost track of how many snide “get a job” snarks I’ve heard from people on the right, people who at least in theory should be my allies, as if my current unemployment can either be magically whisked away or is a clear case of me being a hardcore slacker mooching off the public dole. If this is slacking, I’d like to know what aggressively pursuing employment looks like. No, folks, I’m not enjoying this. Not at all. I’d much rather be working, making money and also stimulating the economy by having at least some to spend. I too would like the new iPad, being able to go on vacation, and buy the occasional CD. Really, I would. So to those who’ve chided me on Twitter and elsewhere, kindly go blow a rabid porcupine.
Oh but I’m all right I’m all right
I’m just weary to my bones
One of the things I’ve learned during this time of searching for work is how it’s both more work than actual work and vastly less rewarding to boot. It sounds odd to say that unemployment is exhausting, but if you’re doing what you can to end it, it is exhausting on all levels. Which can be dangerous.
Still you don’t expect to be bright and bon vivant
So far away from home
So far away from home
It is frustrating, clearly seeing the goal yet finding it so elusive. It’s hard to keep your spirits up, remaining hopeful while simultaneously not getting your hopes up as it’s certain they will be dashed. I’ve stopped expecting people to call back when they’ve said they would, or for them to call back at all. Still, the employment equivalent of Dear John letters sting. As does the silence.
I don’t know a soul who’s not been battered
I don’t have a friend who feels at ease
As the bills mount, there are moments of throat-tightening fear. It’s easy to say that I’m a believer, God will take care of things, consider the lilies of the field and all that. It was easy enough for me to say to others when I was at least semi-comfortable and secure. Now that I’m not, the prayers have become more desperate, more pleading, more angry. I freely confess there have been several instances when I’ve questioned God’s love or even His existence. These moments seldom last long, but they are intense. I still cry out to Jesus, but I wouldn’t object to hearing back from Him more often. And I know I’m not alone in this.
I don’t know a dream that’s not been shattered
Or driven to its knees
Sometimes, and far more often than not privately, I hear from fellow conservatives in similar straits. I’ve occasionally muttered how the only two sins left in America are having sex with a child and uttering a racial epithet; everyone else is forgivable with the right kind of apology and a dash of victimization as justification tossed in. I’m thinking the need has arisen to add a third: being an unemployed conservative. As mentioned above, sympathy and support are scarce commodities. Thankfully there are many good and great people who can and do stand beside you no matter what. However, there are just as many if not more who’d rather jeer. Should the tables ever turn, may God guide me to not do unto others as they have done unto me. I add that while I have no doubt that had I ever met and talked with the late Andrew Breitbart he would have in some manner directly helped me, not with a handout but with a hand up, his followers are an entirely different story.
Oh but it’s all right it’s all right
For we’ve lived so well so long
Still, while things are bad they could be far worse. We’re not too far behind on the bills, and we have not yet been forced to start selling things off to make ends meet. I still have my modest guitar collection, and we can still eat out once in a while. Provided it’s from the dollar menu at McDonald’s, but hey.
Still when I think of the road we’re traveling on
I wonder what’s gone wrong
I can’t help it I wonder what’s gone wrong
Something is very wrong in this country. The Democrats practice class warfare and have no hesitation maintaining an entitlement lower class in exchange for continuing to hold the reins of power. The Republicans preach free market, but have yet to fully deliver on a promise of improved employment prospects for those seeking a return to self-sufficiency. These are rough times.
And I dreamed I was dying
I dreamed that my soul rose unexpectedly
And looking back down on me
There have been moments of despair, but thankfully I have not succumbed to them. I know I’m good enough to do the work for which I’m applying. I know I have a solid track record of accomplishments. I know I have the skills. Despite it all, I have kept a realistic perspective of my strengths and weaknesses. Could there be improvement? Of course. But neither am I without resources. I can be a valued asset to an employer, and I’m doing my best to present this to them.
And I dreamed I was flying
And high up above my eyes could clearly see
The Statue of Liberty
Sailing away to sea
And I dreamed I was flying
I do fear for this country’s direction. Our economy remains weak and stagnant; the debt is crushing us all, and we lack both clarity and purpose in our relationships with other nations. Or, for that matter, ourselves. The media is forever throwing squirrels out to chase in lieu of reporting the actual state of affairs, racial divides are deepening, and screeches of political correctness and purity have replaced public discourse and the necessary compromises for government to function.
Oh we come on a ship they call the Mayflower
We come on a ship that sailed the moon
We as a nation are losing touch with our greatness, our willingness to embrace hardships and danger in order to achieve our goals. We are so rich, yet we have made ourselves poor by not encouraging and exhorting each other to higher levels. We can do better. We must do better.
We come in the age’s most uncertain hours
And sing an American tune
Yet, there is no other country in which I’d rather live. I’d rather press on where there is at least a hope of rejoining the workforce than a European quasi-socialist system where the government facilitates perpetual dependence on itself. That’s no way to live.
Ah and it’s all right it’s all right it’s all right
You can’t be forever blessed
I’ve certainly learned that once these days are over and I’m back on the job, I will never take it for granted. I’ve also learned the vital need of showing proper respect for, and offering encouragement along with whatever assistance I can provide to, others in the boat I’m now rowing. Compassion and kindness are crucial. Only those who have been through the fire can speak with authority to those still engulfed in flames. Once my fire is out, may I rush back in with water for those being burned.
Still tomorrow’s gonna be another working day
And I’m trying to get some rest
That’s all I’m trying
To get some rest
I could use some rest. Please, Lord, bring it quickly.