If I were a saner man, I would breathed a sigh of relief after learning I’d been spared in the recent round of layoffs. Granted, avoiding the ax doesn’t give me license to spend my workday surfing porn but if I get my work done and and not piss off anybody, I should have nothing to worry about. The staff needed pruning. It was pruned. I’m still here. End of story.
Unfortunately, there are parts of my psyche that are just not wired up that way. Doom for others in the past raises the chances of doom for me in the present, regardless of all the evidence to the contrary.
Here’s an example. This morning, the engineering VP came over to have a chat with my boss. This is not unusual as there are often production issues that need to be addressed. Even though my boss and I sit about 10 feet away from each other, I was working on some stuff so I didn’t pay much attention to the conversation.
The one part I did overhear was the VP saying, “That thing we talked about. I’ll send out an email.”
The rational part of my mind shrugged it off as something that was not my concern. Unfortunately, the what-if part of my brain could not resist the urge to offer up a conspiracy theory.
“Dave, you’re fucked,” it said. “That email is going to HR to inform them of your impending termination. I wouldn’t be surprised if they hire Blackwater to handle security. Hell, they might even have you shot in the head and your body shipped to China for organ harvest.”
Fortunately, the what-if part of my brain is fond enough of hyperbole for me to seldom take it seriously.