Dear Aunt Helen,
I am considering taking a huge career risk. It would mean relinquishing my health insurance, 401K, biweekly paycheck and all job security. All of my friends are trying to talk me out of doing this, but I feel like if I don’t take this chance I will always wonder. This is the most confusion I have ever felt; I am giving up a wonderful professional life for a chance at being my own boss and gaining some personal regard and esteem. Am I crazy?
Torn in Tallahassee
Dear Mr. Massad,
When I awoke this morning, on the floor outside the freight elevator in the basement of the fish-cleaning plant, I had no idea what was awaiting me taped to the door of my home. When I first saw the stamped red letters EVICTION! on the outside of the envelope I assumed that it was a flyer for a new musical similar to the one about AIDS and sexual promiscuity that was so popular over a decade ago. Needless to say, it was nothing of the kind! Instead of an invitation to watch otherwise unemployable young people of varying ethnicities singing about deviant sexual behavior, I was confronted with the information that for reasons of “unpaid rent” I was to be thrown on to the street like some Eastern Bloc mongrel, and forced to subsist on the scraps left by the garbage receptacle collection man.
Had you been kind enough, Mister Landlord, to inquire as to the reason for this alleged “nonpayment’ of rent you would have found out that my Social Security checks have, for reasons unexplained, mysteriously stopped arriving. I have been most furiously trying to get to the bottom of this, but the incompetent dolts at the post office continue to deny responsibility. I have for some time considered taking legal action against them, but with no funds to pay a lawyer, you understand the bind that I am in. I am especially displeased by the tape you placed over the door jamb, attempting to block me from accessing my own home! Cease and desist, I say, you vile usurpian!
I am leaving my payment on your doorstep. Rather than the vulgar “cash” you claim to accept, I am leaving a basket filled with antique Hummel figurines, ceramic dogs, miniature bucolic sculptures of milkmaids, and those charming children with large eyes, bible verses, and large-eyed biblical puppies to match. They are among the earth’s richest treasures and I think you will see, after visiting an antique consignment shop, should be more than an adequate payment for any financial compensation you feel you have been denied. Truly, it is more than I can bear to part ways with those large sad-eyed children and puppies, blessing us all with their innocence and bedtime prayers..
You sicken me.