Coming as no kind of surprise — it was just a question of when — my place of employ let go five of its employees last Thursday (two of whom remain on staff until the end of the year) and even though I believe myself to be somewhat secure thanks to the services I provide I'm still sitting here with a bit of a knot in my stomach.
I've been through the layoff dance a couple of times and I probably don't have to tell you that it's a major downer for all of a workplace's staffers, leaving those who remain after the axings with a sense of survivor's guilt but also with a feeling of tension and possibly impending doom. It kills kills morale stone dead and hampers productivity, and no matter how much the higher-ups may make promises to the contrary there are always cuts to be made in these uncertain economic times. At least here at the design 'ho house there is no blatant psychological cruelty involved in the layoffs; when Marvel Comics ended up in Chapter 11 in the 1990's, the powers that be over there tried to put a ludicrous positive spin on things by giving the corporate clear-cutting the catchy name "Marvelution," and some of the people from the floors that had a clue as to who was up for the chop during the long cycle of culling would actually brush past some of us Bullpenners in the hallway and cryptically tell us things like "I'd get ready for something heavy today if I were you" and other such uncalled-for bits of torment, putting us into even more of an agitated state than we already were. And despite such dire "warnings" the layoffs would sometimes not come for weeks, leaving people fucked up and scared throughout, but at least some of the suits got their jollies...
In fact, if I remember the dates correctly, it took some three or four years from the announcement of Marvelution before I got let go after nearly nine years of service, so we're talking years' worth of uncertainty and anxiety.
But this time around, should the axe fall upon my beige neck I'm ready for it and I'll just have to man up and sell boy-pussy in videos with titles like BEEF CHUNX 'N' GRAVY or BEARS' NIGHT OUT.