66 Days

Today, that’s where we stand. 66 days left. Tomorrow will be 65. But then, we’ll have to wait until Monday to start the countdown again.

When I first calculated the time remaining, I wrote it on the calendar. January 30th was 85. A handful of weeks later, here we are. As with most things, particularly as I get ever-older, time just cruises on by.

I guess I need to explain:

As I mentioned, January 30th was when it all started. Well, that’s not exactly true. Two months prior, I knew the end was near. I just didn’t know exactly when. Turns out, May 26th was defined as the culmination, the third date circled on the wall. So the beginning and end were clear, but the second circle on the wall? February 13th? That’s where the problem lies.

Yeah. Me too, Bitmoji. At least, I was. For several years. And until recently, the disorientation ramped up its intensity. Now, although my path is clear, it’s also oddly problematic. Again, it goes back to February 13th.

No, Bitmoji. I think you’re confusing Friday the 13th with February the 13th. That day’s a Monday.

It was a simple mistake, so don’t beat yourself up. And even if it did happen to be a Friday, I’m not really a superstitious guy. I mean, there are two days in 2023 when the 13th happens to be on a Friday, approximately a a 0.5% percent chance. Not great, but not implausible either.

True dat, my idiotic avatar.

Sorry, brah. But you’re constantly starting crap. It’s about time I turned the tables. How’s that make you feel?

Not likely, Bitmoji. Although you’re ability to read a simple calendar is suspect, your hearing is not.

Let’s continue. Friday…

Ummm…sure, I guess.


What the heck are you even talking about? I’m confused.

Sure. Whatever. But seriously, what are you talking about?

Huh? I’m still confused, Bitmoji.

Yeah? Ooooh, I get it. Your “Statistics” comment. It was sarcastic, feigned enthusiasm.


Just…fuck off, Dickmoji.

As I was saying…

The second circled date—the 13th—is just another indication of how many days remaining. That’s it. Nothing more. The first circle was 85 days; the second was 75 days. You can see it. Right there on the calendar.

Yeah, I guess. It’s..

I wasn’t going to say that, Dickmoji. Because it still is a big deal. At least, to me.

That problem isn’t really that specific day. It’s the process. The process of circling it. Writing it down. Cementing in my mind how much time is left. It’s like staring at a hourglass that’s dropping individual grains of sand. In slow motion.

Remember how I said earlier that time tends to cruise on by much more quickly as I age? Well, in this case, it’s not entirely true. Looking back, it’s like, “Damn, I can’t believe there’s only 65 days left.” But each morning, it’s the opposite. “Holy shit, I still have 65 more to go?!” And writing it down? Makes the grains of sand fall even slower. I just need to forget about it and do what I need to do, without it being throw in my face how much longer I have.

No! It’s not that. I mean, all of us are going to die…at some point. So technically, I am dying. But not in 65 days. At least, I hope not. And why the little hearts above your head, implying you’d love for me to die?! I don’t expect that sentiment from you. From my mother, yes. The bitch wrote three letters to me, wishing I were already dead. But your desire for my demise is pretty self-destructive, considering that when I die, you die. I created you, after all. And I can destroy you. For that matter, I could eliminate you right now—no need to wait for my funeral. I have that power, ya’ know?

More sarcasm? How charming you are.😊

True. So I’m a hypocrite. But this back and forth banter between us? It’s gotta stop. This fucking blog is taking forever.

Agreed. Let’s pick up the pace.

So the 65 days does not signify a countdown until I die. In case you haven’t figured it out yet, Dear Reader, here’s a final clue: the highlighted Fridays on the calendar are my paychecks. Putting that all together, the 26th of May will be my last…

Yes, Bitmoji. My last day at work. Your smiling face, though? Not a true representation. When I get up and have to go to the office, it’s like my soul is being sucked from my body.

Yep, more like that. And this frame of mind is exactly why I don’t need the constant reminder of how many more times I have to endure my shitty job. It’s fucking hard to go into a place that steals your joy. In the larger picture, it’s a blip in time. But in that moment? The very process of getting out of bed is challenging, to say the least.

I started out my career in 1992. It should’ve actually been 1990, but I was on the extended six year college program (We’ll save that story for another blog. Spoiler alert: It’ll involve lots of alcohol and generally irresponsible, immature behavior.).

I kinda fell into my profession, not knowing what I wanted to do with my life. I knew I wanted to pursue some sort of technical/computer/science/engineering field, but what that looked like? Zero clue. That is, until I enrolled in a History of Metals elective. That’s all that was required. I was hooked: Metallurgy would be my profession.

And I kinda-sorta liked it, for awhile. It was interesting, and I felt like I was fairly decent at it. Not a genius, but I worked hard and was a natural leader, advancing into management.

More than 30 years later, I’m bored as fuck. Besides the paycheck and a handful of people I get along with, there’s little I enjoy about work. I’ve been coasting for several years, not putting in the effort to give me any sort of self-satisfaction and doing little to improve or learn. Honestly, if I had an employee like myself, I would’ve fired him years ago.

But it’s not just me. The company itself is dysfunctional, lacking basic communication skills. The culture thrives on arrogance—the arrogance of an undeniable history as a world-renowned producer of large-as-fuck forged components. At the company’s highest pay grade are several long-standing individuals, who constantly harken back to the glory days, reminding us not to try anything new, as “this is the way it’s always been done.” The president himself pushes that narrative; anything new is met with a series of roadblocks that must be overcome with hand wringing and countless meetings. Even then, new jobs are estimated with so many layers of fat and extraordinary precautions that the probability of landing the opportunity is essentially zero. And everyone knows that, so quotations are a fruitless endeavor; we spend hours upon hours working on tasks that are meaningless, considering there isn’t any hope of gaining new customers.

With arrogance and cowardice rampant, the job itself is uninspiring. Much of our time is devoted on products we’ve produced hundreds of times. Copy and paste, my friend.

On top of all that, I truly believe I’m comparatively incompetent. Perhaps fifteen years ago, in a company that was innovative, I could’ve excelled. Perhaps. But given our company’s wealth of experience and brain power, I feel like a fucking imposter.

Another reason I’m counting the days? Ethics. The component we produce are utilized for an industry that doesn’t align with my morals. I don’t want to make these products; I’d much rather make items that I believed in. And if that’s not possible, at the very least I no longer want to produce products that I don’t believe in. Each day, I feel dirty. Not from the inherently unclean, grimy environment, but from the nature of the work itself.

For my own mental health, it’s time for a change. And the company—despite me not really giving two shits about them—deserves better. I’m tired of going to meetings and not contributing, concerned that someone will actually ask my opinion. Concerned that I’ll be exposed as an imposter.

Change is good. But it’s also a little anxiety inducing, particularly when you’re staring at the calendar every single day. So I won’t. Tomorrow, I’m gonna rip that freaking thing off the wall. Tomorrow, I’m just going to live in the moment, letting the days play out as they will. Not worrying about how quickly—or slowly—March 26th will come.


Thanks for the reminder. And fuck you, Dickmoji.

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