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Sunday, November 16, 2014

Fringeville #127, November 16 2014

The unstoppable ..and thank God for that ..David Yonki



Congratulations, LuLac Political Letter for winning the NEPA BlogCon 2014 Political Blog of the Year!
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...people tell me to slow down. There's plenty of time for that after they plant me.

I made a somewhat ambiguous post on my Facebook page this past Friday. It concerned yet another big exclamation point in my life this year.

As Ricky Ricardo would say, "...Let me 'splain, Lucy."

"...this time, I've got 'splaining to do, Lucy. Then you 'splain why Fred is dead on the floor and his wallet is empty."

Coming into 2014 I'd ended my second full year of living in a post-job-restructuring world. Sane people would likely have run screaming after the first year, but as many of you have long suspected I do not think like most people. I do believe I am sane, but I also think my brain is wired a wee bit differently. I was able to stay calm when I went from making good money to no money to a smidgeon of money in the first twelve months. In 2013, I made more progress and landed a great job with a local small business. Financially, I still had a long way to go and the money was still flowing in the wrong direction.

But I had a master plan: I would pick up a second full-time job in 2014 to go along with the one I had already (plus some small but steady income from a monthly bookkeeping gig).

The whole plan came crashing down in March when I got prostate cancer.

Yet I stayed calm while all around me things seemed to be devolving at a rate that was bordering on the spectacular. Whole new piles of bills came in, which I dutifully ignored because they scared the bejesus out of me and I had no way to pay them. I bounced back from surgery very quickly, but my stamina wasn't what it was. I also seem to have lost forever the ability to sleep like a normal human being.

What kept me going through all this, behind only the tremendous moral support of my family and friends, was working with Melanie Madeira's campaign in Lackawanna County, putting together some activities together for the Third District GOP with my pal Susan Zaykoski, and working a bit with the Luzerne County Teenage Republicans. I kept myself so busy that I didn't have much time to dwell on my own mortality or the precariousness of my own finances.

Then, about a month ago, and for no particular reason, I was overwhelmed by a sense that things were going to take a turn. In my favor. I had no rational reason to feel that way. I told my wife I was on the cusp of something good. She looked at me, and for very good reason, as if I'd lost my mind.

I was physically back at 100%, and I'd been looking for 3rd shift work (my original 2014 plan). I did two interviews not long after I told my wife we were about to turn a corner. On this past Friday, I signed an offer letter.

This will cause a few folks to scratch their heads: "...Umm... Jimbo're going to work TWO full time jobs? That's terrible!"

Ummm. No it is not.

I prayed for this. I basically looked up at the sky and said: "Big Guy, I need this one. Can you pull a string here?"

It is going to be hard work, but as my good friend Yonk says: "All work is noble."

In my life I have worked as a laborer, a manager, as a self-employed one-man business, and I've even done a little reporting. I belong to that odd subset of people born with "Bear Bryant Syndrome:" In short, retire-and-die-immediately. I will never stop working. If I'm not working, go through my pockets for loose change: I'm dead. I've also never looked down at anyone for the type of work they do (revisit the Yonk quote above). And I never will. 

...Keep your butt moving Jimbo. Now drop and gimmee a dozen. Wings.

You know I don't blog about my work place (current or in this case soon-to-be second workplace). I think when you do that you're juggling hand grenades and sooner or later a pin comes out of one of them and you blow yourself up. But what I will say is that strategically this job will fix some holes that have needed filling since 2011. It will increase my cash flow and reduce my outlay in some other areas. It will allow me to begin replacing the savings that the last two years wiped out completely. (The last of that disappeared two hours ...TWO HOURS ...before my phone rang with the job offer. To my atheist friends out there, excuse me for seeing the hand of God in that. But it is what it is. I prayed. Prayer answered. And the timing was incredible.)

Since I have not yet figured out how to either clone myself or do without sleep entirely, something has to give. And my decision is to take a dramatically smaller role in politics.  I will end my current term as a GOP committee member but I will not seek another term in 2016 and will immediately scale back what I am doing in that capacity. I most certainly will NOT run for any kind of office in the foreseeable future. Please chisel that in stone. I will help a very few select candidates who can put up with me, but the vast bulk of what time I have available will be spent with my family. They must come first, because as with any cancer I don't know if I'm going to be around until I die at the end of a double shift at age 95 at a business I own (my super-secret long-term plan) or if I'm essentially a human milk carton with a 5-10 year expiration date.

So that's it. That's the big news. It may not seem all that spectacular to some folks. But it is huge for me. It puts me back on track. It mean's I'm working hard, which means I'm happy.

And I will be able to splurge on the occasional Wing Night at Dan's Keystone Grille.

Until next post... live large and eat more wings.

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