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12/26/08 update Well, it t'was a Charley Brown Xmas ... to a point. Lemme tell you, those of you who are divorced, become FRIENDS with your ex. Firstly, the kids will THRIVE. Second, when the chips are down, they'll step up. We never cut it as man and wife, should have STAYED friends. It works SO much better. Christmas was WELL taken care of. The kids had a good time. Of course, having THREE sets of Grandparents doesn't hurt either. :) I'm planning on a small Xmas in January for the extended family and friends. Still nothing from AT&T ... -Supposedly- the 'check is in the mail' .... Shall see. Till then, there's food in the pantry, gas in the truck and I've got all day to clean, clean, clean !!! (And, perhaps, a bit of Fu :P ) I finally have time to get this place the way I like it !! :):) Again, Thank you ALL for your support. ... ... GAWD, I sound like a Wine Cooler Commercial. Yeah, I'm old. :P:P .. Can you name the brand?? :P *~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~**~*~ Well ... MANY of you have been asking whats been going on, so I thought I'd write it all out .... WAAAAAY too much typing. 4 weeks ago, I was notified that my department will be closing down. (We've known for a year) Effective December, my company will be out of the Payphone business and the other functions will be transferred to alternate departments. Considering that our Union Contract guarantees employment, I -thought- I'd be 'safe'. I've been checking the transfer boards, looking for another field of work for 16 months. There is NOTHING pending. Not even service rep or operator. Our contract comes due in April, hence the lack of transfers. A bit of history: 9 years ago, Pacific Bell was bought out by SBC. (fyi~ SBC doesn't 'stand' for anything, it is a holding company for multiple Baby Bells) AS you might know, we are now AT&T, we just bought the name .... the game remains the same. Well ..... SBC does NOT like doing business in California. Our privacy laws and restrictions, enforced by the CPUC, drives them CRAZY!! As a result, ALL indoor jobs are migrating to Houston by 2nd quarter of next year. AT&T is in the midst of a MASSIVE labor shift. With the contract coming due, the Company is attempting to drop its labor force, hire temp workers (ALL U-Verse workers are currently contract employees, making 2/3 the standard pay!!) and contract employees. I -did- apply for a Cable Maint position, fully qualified etc ..... The Company chose to retract the requisition and hire a contractor for the work. That is against the Contract. When I advised the Union, I was told that it's just one position and that with the contract coming up, they 'Don't want to upset the negotiations'. i.e.- It's not worth it to hinder the talks when only ONE job is at stake. -- Just figured it out last week .... I've paid those morons $22,941 over almost 20 years .... and this is the response I get when I -finally- need help??? UGH!!! As a result, I'm taking a buyout. The package is -ok-. I won't have to work for a few months if I choose not to. (As if !!! ... I think I'll travel a bit then get back to the Rat Race) However, I DO have 18 months of transfer opportunity back into the company. That takes me well past the contract (There WILL be a lengthy strike come April!!) so it looks 'OK'. I've worked for the Company for 19.8 years, yeah, some of you Fu's were in diapers !! :p I don't like this whole sitch, it just SMELLS! But, needs must when the Devil drives. Thank you ALL for your support. Its gonna be tight for a while .... Given the weird rules, first buyout check wont be seen till early January!! Gonna be a Charley Brown Xmas, tis all good .... The kids have been notified. Thank Gawd, they're older and can understand!! As is my nature, I'm looking forward and I'm eager to see what other opportunities arise. Ya never know !!
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