I, UNEMPLOYED: Diary Of A 42-Year Old TV Producer With A Family Of Five Who Got Laid Off 420 Days Ago

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The writer known as “Sir Bacon” is a 42-year old television producer who has been unemployed since the end 2008.  He is married, with three kids, and hunting for a new job.

In the meantime, he is writing an excellent blog:

MY UNEMPLOYED JOURNEY: The twist to my real-life reality show came when I was handed my pink slip after 25 successful years in the working world. At age 42, married and a father of three, this is not the way the script was supposed to go. This is my journey, bumps and all, as I try to get back on my feet.
Sir Bacon has been kind enough to let us reprint some of his posts here.  You can get a taste of his journey on the next few pages and then read the rest here.

Here’s how Sir Bacon’s all-too-familiar journey starts…

Today is the first day of the new year, the first day of the new decade and hopefully the first day of a new life.

I enter 2010, like one of many million Americans, whose office door was slammed in my face, through no fault of my own, leaving me unemployed and unhappy.

There are a lot of ways to fight back, but in the best interest of sanity (and staying off the top 10 most wanted list), I am taking a different approach…

Keep reading >

January 1, 2010: The Journey To Unemployment

January 2, 2010: The Beginning And The End

January 8, 2010: mum and Me

My 80-year old mother and I have a great relationship.

For as long as I can remember, there has NEVER been a time that she wasn't on my side.

She is patient with me. She is supportive. She has never judged any decision that I have made.

Did I mention that she is bipolar?

She's been called a lot of names over the years, from manic-depressive to chemical imbalance to just plain crazy, but to me, she's just mum.

It has taken me a long time to accept the fact that her behaviour is out of her control. It has taken her a long time to accept that there are medications that can help her.

Unfortunately, my mum was dealt a bad set of cards.

She didn't know her father. She lost her five-year old daughter to a terrible accident. She sat by and watched her eldest son battle cancer for two years.

Bipolar? I believe the appropriate diagnosis for her is, unlucky.

Even with all that she has been put through, she wakes up every day with just one goal in mind -- love life.

Somedays, that is easier than others.

After I lost my job, my mum lost her balance.

One hip surgery, one wrist surgery and three months in a rehab facility later, we decided that it was time for her to move closer than the 1000 miles that she had lived from us.

We tried to make that new home in our basement, but after several months and several emergency trips to the emergency room, reality set in.

We needed to go to Plan M -- Plan Medicaid.

Fortunately, there are still programs in this country that will take care of those who need care.

Unfortunately, you can't do it without patience and persistence.

By no means, especially financial, was my mother able to take care of the forms and forms.... and forms that it takes to get Medicaid approved.

The good news is, I am unemployed.

At least I was until I took on the full-time employment of dealing with all the paperwork. I must remind you that this new job of mine doesn't come with a salary, but the benefits are incredible.

I filled out the 50-something page application for my mum, leaving only the place for her to give her 20+ autographs.

I'm not sure where my state ranks, but with the degree of difficulty in getting the form filled out accurately, it could be an olympic event.

After printing and re-printing, faxing and re-faxing, I had successfully muddled my way through all of the paperwork -- no small feat considering I had to answer more questions than the SAT.

That's enough to drive anybody crazy.

Finally, through the grace of God, the support of Debbie at the Medicaid office and the flipping of three pages on my month-by-month calendar, the application was approved.

My mum now lives in a senior facility, 15 minutes from our house, where all meals and medication are prepared for her.

Thankfully, I am unemployed again. From: My Unemployed Journey

January 13, 2010: False Alarm

When you've been out of the office for as long as I have -- approaching 14 months now -- it's pretty easy to get excited when a possible job comes your way.

It really doesn't take very much. A phone call, an email... sometimes, even a billboard on the side of the road can give you some hope.

Well, last weekend I got a major lead and this time, it wasn't another mirage. This was the real deal.

A former colleague of mine, who has helped me get work in the past, sent me an email asking if I would be interested in a job with him.

Interested?

Uh, in a word -- of course.

The description of the job spoke directly to what I had been doing for the majority of my career.

Of course, I have been through this sudoku puzzle before -- job comes my way, I get excited about job, job runs in other direction as quickly as possible.

Wow, that reminds me of my dating life in college.

Well, this time it felt different. This was my reliable friend, not some temp agency.

That was Saturday. This is Wednesday, NIGHT.

I'll bet whoever said patience is a virtue, must've spent most of their life on the unemployment line. If you can sit still without a job, you can sit still anywhere.

For those of you counting -- the initial contact came on Saturday, now, here we are, nearly five days later with nothing.

(Actually, it's closer to four days later, but this glass half full thing has left town.)

Is there really a chance that this will be my golden ticket?

47 hours ago, I thought that answer was yes, but who's counting.

Now, I have no idea.

Even with all the bruises of this process, I still have not lost my desire to work. I have not lost my confidence to work well. And I have certainly not lost my hope that there will be a happy ending here.

I am very talented, creative and motivated -- skills that didn't wash away with my last paycheck.

But why is this happening? Actually, why is this happening TO ME?

I know there are millions of Americans being hazed on a daily basis in this horrendous fraternity, but I'm the only person I have to wake up with every morning. Well, me and my wife.

And as amazingly supportive as she has been, I think it's starting to take a toll on her as well.

Like me, she bought into this phantom job.

She bought in on Saturday morning.

Bought in on Sunday.

Asked if he called on Monday.

Wondered why he didn't call on Tuesday.

Started to get mad on Wednesday.

I can't wait for Thursday. From: My Unemployed Journey

January 14, 2010: An Extra Shot Of Reality

January 15, 2010: Man At Work

January 26, 2010: Bed, Blog, and Beyond

Postscript

'Sir Bacon' is still unemployed... and still blogging.

If you have a job for him, drop him a line. He is happy to relocate.

Or just read more of his excellent writings at My Unemployed Journey >.

Hopefully for him and millions of other Americans, that journey won't last too much longer.

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