Self Induced Midlife Crisis

This may take more than one margarita…

I’m employed on a mountain called Vesuvius. One minute you’re employed, the next minute wiped out by a flow of magma. Magma is unpredictable. There is no safe place. Fear of being crisped by hot lava, caused some to flee.

Most of us at the job feel our days are numbered. I have a low tolerance for bullshit and tend toward truth. I tell the truth as in, “employee appreciation luncheon, please bring a covered dish” to which I replied, “What a bunch of cheapskates.”

I come from an exuberant family and also tend toward being loud. “Multi-million dollar bonuses elsewhere and we have to appreciate ourselves by bringing our own lunchmeat and cheese platter?” Many overheard and shared my sentiments. The luncheon was a bust.

I thought it best to consider other employment options before the next eruption came from either me or the mountain. The better paying jobs, such as waitress and bartender, which relied on the generosity of patrons for a decent wage, pitted me against young, college graduates.

Fast food establishments held no appeal. I wasn’t into clogging people’s arteries.

I’d be bored to death with a bank job. Corporate greed gets under my skin and I’m tired of being the butt of its joke. I considered unconventional employment opportunities.

The first option came to mind when my sister, a photographer, told me her camera club paid thirty-five dollars a head to photograph a trolley graveyard. A place where they bury old street cars? What do they put on the tombstones? “Here lies old Number Seven. He served us well and then his motor went to hell?”.

“A what?” I said.

“A trolley graveyard, a man collected old trolley cars and antique autos and put them on a piece of land. A film maker shot a zombie movie on the property too.”

Sit back, watch junk rust, and collect money, where did one acquire trolleys past their prime? The biggest drawback, besides my neighbors no longer inviting me to BBQ’s, would be the size of my yard. I could squish three trolley shells in the backyard, but that wouldn’t leave much room for zombies to run about. I might fit a VW shell in the front yard across the sidewalk.

As appealing as making money on rust seemed, I didn’t want zombies stomping on my tomatoes. The mailman might complain about crawling over a rusted VW shell to deliver all those checks.

Another possible employment opportunity sprang up when my dad got in trouble for using a feather from Mom’s Christmas ornament to tie a fly. Dad, a fly fisherman, made trout bait from feathers, fur, and wool. I thought I could make and sell fake bugs.

This opportunity had an initial low investment. Dad had an extra fly tying thingy I could use. Not knowing what the devise is called may be an impediment. I’d also need to learn a bunch of bug names such as Caddis Fly. I did have scrounging abilities and a dog that’s a never-ending source of fur though.

A friend suggested a china shiner after a client of her daughter’s couldn’t make an appointment. The client had a china shiner scheduled. An internet search turned up nothing. We deduced a china shiner was someone who shined china. Her daughter lives in the oil rich state of Texas. In our depressed former steel town, I may go hungry taking up the china shiner trade.

So far my best option looks like the fly tying gig. It’s not like I’m used to dental or eye care plans or even healthcare. I’ve yet to see a job search turn up work for harbinger of truth or hell raiser.

I’m tired of volcanoes. I’d like a new job preferably on a beach with an occasional margarita that’s not BYOB.

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