So I need to come clean about something. It isn't a good thing, but it's something I think I need to say. I've been a bad boy.
Other than working a crazy (returned to last year's level) amount of overtime (but probably only for this week), there a whole parcel of other things happening with the day thing. As you may be aware, Bob, the economy sucks rocks. Or in the immortal words of Colonel Sandurz in Spaceballs, "She's gone from suck to blow." There's some newer tech that'll be installed in the next week which may siphon some of my work away (at least until they realize that the myths they've told themselves aren't true, but who know what direction it may take after that).
Printing and design are like canaries in the coal mine. We're usually the first to drop over as the economic air turns acerbic. It's been a little strange, and we've been slow at times, but so far no layoffs. However, I was getting a little anxious as we approached the end of the year. Good thing for us is there's still work coming in and (even though I jump on them at times) the sales team has been bringing in new clients.
Then we have one person retiring at the end of the month. So there's a staff reduction by volunteerism. And now we hear that another coworker needs to take extended leave to deal with a family issue. This really sucks, and I hope they're able to make it through it. I have some personal history with the issue, and it's not going to be a fun time and I feel very bad they have to go through this. It's a rough thing to go through, and I'm not sure I'd be able to make it if it were me.
There was a little part of me, though, that felt relieved. One more volunteer (although this employee will come back at some point), and I felt a little easier about work. And as I felt that unclenching release of "maybe I will have a job through the next year, and we'll make it through this downturn," I realized just how horrible that feeling was. Survivor's guilt is what they call it.
A bad economy, it brings out the best and worse in people. There's a movie quote, and I can't quite pull it out of memory, but I think it's Scotty from Star Trek that says something like, "Aye, and what a bastardly lot it makes us." Exactly how I feel at the moment.