We Regret To Inform You

I sure didn’t see it coming.  It never even crossed my mind that it could happen to me.  But it did.  Today.  Delivered in a nondescript plain white envelope. I have been fired.  Fired!!!  Oh sure, they didn’t put it quite that bluntly, but the bottom line is the same.  “The Agency is writing to inform you of some major changes in our federal grant which will effect your status as a volunteer.  The new grant greatly changes our requirements and focus.”  Uh Oh, that doesn’t sound good.  “You like many of our volunteers are doing important work in areas that do not fit within our new guidelines.”  Me.  They are dropping me like a dirty sweat sock.

I of course am not a stranger to “reductions in force”  Over the years I survived no less then five consolidations, each with it’s own set of dear john letters.  But you expected that.  It was part of being employed.  But somehow, I thought that was behind me.  I had walked through the gates of retirement and had been anointed with the balm of “happily ever after.”  So how could this have happened?

After the initial shock wore off, and color began to return to my face, I did what everyone in a similar position (and believe me, there are a lot of us.  I’m not the only one that got one of these letters) would do, I began to rationalize.  I reasoned that it is nothing personal, volunteers get fired every day (don’t they)?  I am sure there are hundreds of them standing in line at the OSV (Office of Surplus Volunteers), registering for lost benefits like unpaid holidays and unpaid vacation and unpaid services.  Some are probably down at the Volunteers Helping Volunteers Mission right now, hoping for an opportunity, or a hug.

They did say that I was free to continue with my present volunteer work unaffected by this change in status.  I thought that was kind of nice, seeing that it is my time and my decision how to use it.  But they are funded by a government grant, so I guess I shouldn’t be surprised by being told what I can do. 

Finally as a concession to my new status, they did say “if you are looking for additional volunteer opportunities, please contact us.”  No, I don’t think so.  I don’t think I could live with the stress of possibly being fired again by the next administration.  I’ll just continue to clandestinely show up the nursing home each week and hope no one notices that I am now flying solo.  Just sayin.






About oldmainer

I am a retired manager living in Southern Maine and a would be writer of poetry, narratives, short stories, and random opinions, and that's how Oldmainer was born. Recently, I decided to try an experiment. I added photography to the mix, using only a cheap cell phone with a limited camera and the editing software that came with it, and added the blog site Inklings at poormanspoet.wordpress.com to showcase the results. So, feel free to use whatever you find interesting or worthy, but please honor the terms of my copyright when and if you do. They may not be much, but they are still a piece of me. I appreciate your checking me out and hope that you find something that will encourage a return visit. Thanks for stopping by.
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23 Responses to We Regret To Inform You

  1. Theresa says:

    Seriously? Can a volunteer be fired???


  2. quiall says:

    I wonder how much it cost them to ‘fire’ people who are already unpaid??? I’m just saying . . .


  3. Basically, they cut the program you were volunteering for, right? If that is true, how can you continue in your present capacity, as they said, no change in status? I don’t get it. But, of course, it doesn’t make ANY sense, so…. Government…heavy sigh. I admit I do like the idea of a department for OSV. You should run with that one:) LOL


    • oldmainer says:

      Well, I can’t. But I can continue to do what I do every week. They just won’t get credit for my hours. No harm. No foul. They will just have to work a little harder to accumulate the volunteer hours that justify there existance.


  4. snoogiefisk says:

    I’m impressed. It takes great skill to be fired from a non-paying job. I hope this doesn’t effect your ability to find another non-paying job. It certainly won’t look good on your resume.


  5. I’m with snoogiefisk’s comment above – it isn’t anyone who can seek out a volunteer opportunity and then get the axe – that sort of thing is usually reserved for those who have hidden well a criminal record. Just trying to find the humour, as you say. But how ridiculous life can be.


  6. msmcword says:

    I think it is time for these government workers to fire themselves.


  7. I’m sitting here flabbergasted


  8. oldmainer says:

    Just when you think you have heard it all, right???


  9. laurie27wsmith says:

    You should be real cheeky on this Bob and write back asking them for some form of severance pay. You know, a blank cheque for a non-paying position. 🙂


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