Monday, June 2, 2008

The Day I Dreaded

For so many years, I covered tragedy from afar. While working as a journalist, I covered car wrecks, murders, robberies, layoffs, drownings, house fires, etc. I didn't like it. It's one of the reasons I decided, early on in my broadcast career to concentrate on meteorology, so I wouldn't have to stick a microphone into the face of someone who's world had just been shattered. Instead, I wanted to warn people of impending danger in the form of dangerous storms, and on calm weather days, I wanted to lighten the moment, and maybe bring a smile or two.

Today, the shoe was on the other foot. I had to participate in the meetings in which good employees at Paducah Transit were told they were going to be laid off effective July 1st. It broke my heart. They're my co-workers and friends. They have families and children. They're good people who did nothing wrong, and in fact, most of them are excellent workers. They're simply victims of circumstance. They just got dealt a bad set of cards. I pray they find another job soon. I pray we can hire them back when the storm is over.

I talked to several media outlets today who were doing stories about the layoffs. I tried to tell them how good these people are in hopes that some good employer will snatch them up. I pray they do. Some of them had been there much longer than I. They may have thought I deserved to be laid off before them. I wonder about that too. Maybe they're right. I had no control over the decision. I just know life's circumstances are sometimes merely whose coin comes up heads and whose comes up tails. Sometimes it's a cruel world. I've been dealt some bad hands too along the way, but at other times I've been lucky. Sometimes, though, even when you're lucky, you don't feel so good.

3 comments:

hulagirlatheart said...

Ah, a lesson in management my friend. It can sometimes be very painful to have to be a part of such things. Layoffs..right up there with firings and difficult conversations. It's the things that make managers' guts churn when no one's watching. I'm sorry for your friends, and glad you were one of the lucky ones.

Leonard Riggs Jr said...

Yeah, it's the downfall of being in management. Been there myself.....glad you were spared!

Emily said...

It shows that you have a heart. There are some managers that would not give a second thought to it, as long as they knew their job was safe.

I'm sorry that you had to do that. It has to hurt.