April Fools

01 Apr 2020

Mad Real World

By my count, I have been in self-isolation for 15 days as of this writing. It doesn’t seem like much, when put that way. Hmmm, interesting. It certainly feels like it’s been much, much longer than that. One day at a time, we’re all in this together, yada, yada, yada.

At this stage in isolation, things are starting to happen. There is some news at work (and the world, writ large, of course), as well as just a general feeling of unease [dread]. It’s becoming quite clear that the isolation and #stayathome measures being taken to prevent the spread of COVID19 will have a dramatic effect on the economy. We’re likely headed for a recession, and a lot of businesses in the service industry (i.e. bars and restaurants) that are closed right now will probably never reopen. It’s still too early to tell, but early reports range from really bad to devastating. So… there’s that.

I mentioned news at work, and here it is. Whatever pay raise might have happened this year has officially been cancelled. It’s possible the writing was on the wall long before COVID19 became a household word. I had my annual review meeting with my boss, but the financial part of the review had not yet been finalized. That’s happened before, so I didn’t think much of it. On top of that, the annual bonus (which has been trending downward) is also cancelled for 2020. Not solely due to the COVID19 crisis, I’m sure. With how closely tied my company is with the Oil & Gas industry, $20/barrel oil does not bode well. To quote any of the Star Wars movies: “I have a bad feeling about this…” I have a feeling that the austerity measures are not done yet. We’ll probably see a reduction in staff in some way. Whether it’s chopping interns first or other types of layoffs is yet to be seen, but I think something else is on the horizon.

I don’t expect to be laid off anytime soon, but should some form of voluntary separation become available to me, I might be interested in it this time around. My plan at that point would be to dive into a data science boot camp program. One where job placement is guaranteed upon completion. I’ve been interested in this field for 4-5 years (!) now. It’s time to put whatever smarts I have to use for the good of the people.