I’m still working from home, and I’m grateful for the paycheck, (and hey, isn’t it awesome how the US ties our health care to employment, so we just threw 10 million people out of work and also off health insurance during a pandemic?)
As I’ve mentioned, I’m a contractor and have been for years, and normally it’s fine, but this week two things happened: I participated in a conference call with the company where I work (not my employer) and heard what they’re doing for their employees to help them out, and I got an email from my own employer.
The contrast was, um, striking. The employees are getting cash, extra paid time off, flexible schedules where possible. Someone asked if the company would do anything for the many, many contractors who work alongside the employees, and the answer was, “We’re trying to keep them working.” In other words, nope.
My own employer, source of my paycheck and health insurance, emailed us to say that they’re not doing anything extra for us, but hey, if our contracted positions go away we can always apply for unemployment, and good luck with health insurance. So, yeah, that was this week.
By yesterday I really could feel my nerves fraying; I think we’re all just starting to wrap our minds around the fact that the normal we knew before is never going to come back in quite the same way. We’ll get through it, most of us, but we’ll never be the same.
A friend shared a wonderful, darkly hilarious and profane essay by Chuck Wendig on Facebook. I’ve shared the link to it below; go read it. The entire essay resonated with me, but this part in particular:
” You cannot meet abnormality with increased normalcy. It just doesn’t work. There’s no countermanding it that way. We’re told we can be more productive, that we’re all work-from-home now, but lemme tell you: this isn’t your average way to work-from-home. This isn’t how to accelerate productivity. It’s like being told to work-from-home during a locust plague and a forest fire.“
Read the entire excellent essay here.