Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Layoffs R Us

Corporate America. Getting rid of excess waste in style.

I was let go from my work place this morning along with hundreds of folks. My former colleagues were very somber about it, and either chose not to look at me or to give me puppy dog eyes. It's that age-old phrase: the company loves misery. It stinks to feel rejected, but it's not the worst way to go. Imagine the last time you got dumped. If that person helped you get your things together, thanked you for being nice and then gave you some cash, maybe you would have thought twice before putting their number on Craigslist.

I never felt comfortable talking about my job on the blog, but now that I don't work there anymore, I can finally reveal what I did for a living: I wrote descriptions for Sky Mall.

You know that litter box that looks like a space ship? I'm the one who thought to call it "an intimate get-away for your pet". When we tested it, most cats were too afraid to go inside, so I added, "You won't be able to tell they've used it!" Engineers from Sweden would send in their ridiculous inventions, and it was my job to trick people into buying them. The key is to make the impractical seem necessary. The upright hot dog and bun warmer? "An exclusive toaster for exclusive tastes." The giant, wall-sized cross word puzzle? "Hiding punch-holes has never been this fun...or educational." The ice cream maker that needs no ice OR chemicals? "Uh...soup recipes included."

I guess the only thing I would have changed is being let go by an animatronic Elvis bust.

"You ain't nothing but a hound dog!"

But Boss, I can do better.

"...cryin' all the time."

No. I told myself I would not cry. I just wanted to say one thing.

"A little less conversation--"

I know, a little more action. I remember the company slogan. I'll...see myself out.

Some of the staff were very cool. I will miss Victor who always called me Bee-bee and said my Spanish was very good. And if I may have a private word just between the two of us: Hola. Bien gracias y tu? Muy bien. Uh...I don't know that one. Bueno? Okay. Later.

I will miss the weird painting on the wall made of blue blotches that always looked like a screaming face. I will miss my desk by the men's room. I will miss the stale contents of that desk. Namely the packet of dried chicken noodle-flavored soup labeled, "Beat the 3PM Slump!" that always reminded me to go to Starbucks. Especially at this time of year, I will miss the phone call announcing the non-negotiable bonus and the follow-up question, "So how does that sound to you?"

Good bye Sky Mall! See you next to the barf bag.


Abbi said...

Re: Anonymous said...
Abbi, I had to watch two of my co-workers get let go this morning. Then I went to e-mail you and you were gone. I just cannot believe it. That company really, really stinks. You can do way better. I am getting out of there as soon as I can. I still feel nauseous over the whole thing.

Thanks so much. You were definitely one of the highlights of that job. We'll be in touch!

Jerell said...

There's always Spencer's Gifts. You can describe this pole dancing kit. For the nineteen year old, mother of two, in all of us.

fantasy weather league said...

Aw hell.
That sucks, I was wondering if you were still here... (my peeps on the loading dock tell me we've got a thousand more to go, whoo!)

Skymall is gonna miss you big time, who else would have thought to buy up overstock from that scary German sex-shop, call them "back massgers" and then follow up with a winky little sentence like "The Body Back Buddy has a total of 11 knobs ... so you have more options for how to put it to good use."

You were the ballsiest copy writer this joint has ever seen, but you know, the hard die young...

(or whatever Billy Joel said)

Mo Diggs said...

Sorry to hear that. I hear Guantanomo Bay is looking for people to make their services look more palatable.

Anonymous said...

they should send those greedy money-whore ceos to go "fight for democracy" in iraq...and "Pal" too.

keep your head up.

DiSa said...

That is my dream job. You are a personal hero of mine now. Must hear more.

Abbi said...

Thanks, you guys are the best. Like Entourage-in-a-Box, you are a delightful assortment of talking heads that may be placed on your mantle, in your kitchen or anywhere you need a reminder or encouragement before you start your day. Release date is Christmas '09. Varieties include the cast of The Office, Krazy Kardashians and Effeminate Oprah Stylists.