Trying not to be Mr. Buzzkill

I spent a nice Easter with a lady friend and her family. Very nice people and a fine time was had by all. Still, when you’ve got the burden of joblessness weighing down on you, it’s hard to really let go and have fun. The young lady made the point during the day that she wished I could be as happy as she was but she certainly understood why I wasn’t.

Something along those lines came up during my first class at the outplacement service paid for by my former employer. The person leading the class noted that those of us now not working would be (or are) going through a series of emotions. She noted 5 stages developed by the Swiss psychiatrist, Elisabeth Kübler-Ross (denial, anger, bargaining, depression, acceptance).

The first time I heard the Kübler-Ross model was during a very funny section of the movie “All That Jazz.”  That’s the movie directed by Bob Fosse that takes a bittersweet look at the life of… Bob Fosse.  Roy Schieder, playing Fosse doppelgänger Joe Gideon, is editing a film very similar to “Lenny.” The difficult actor is played by Cliff Gorman (who played Lenny Bruce in the stage version, but was passed over for “name” actor Dustin Hoffman when that film was made).

Anyway, I say all that to say when the comedian brings up the 5 stages, he notes that they were first noted in a book “On Death and Dying.” The outplacement instructor didn’t mention that, but I thought it was interesting that she’d draw a reference from that to help us through losing our jobs. Which has actually seemed a little like dying at times.

Still, there are “up” things that are occurring. I found out that regardless of what I read on one State of Tennessee website, I don’t actually have to show up in person to file for unemployment. I had a very good interview last week. I’m writing up a sample script for that organization now (okay, I’m writing the blog right now to take a break from writing the script, but I’m making very good progress). My trivia team plays tonight. I might jinx us, but we’ve won three weeks in a row (stop by the downtown Blue Monkey any Mondays at 8pm, or follow the action at http://memphistrivialeague.com/).

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