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  • Writer's pictureGail Weiner

The prick and the silver lining

Back in the early 2000s, I was working at a tech company alongside the most insufferable operations manager you could ever come across. This guy was the epitome of a narcissist, constantly belittling others and sowing discord among colleagues just to boost his own ego. To say he was one of the worst people I've ever encountered would be an understatement. When the CEO finally showed him the door, I breathed a sigh of relief, hoping to never cross paths with him again.

As fate would have it, I had been working at another tech company for eight years, doing alright in a management position. If I had stayed there, my job would have been secure, with a modest annual raise until retirement. Deep down, though, I had always nurtured a desire to start my own business. The only thing holding me back was the fear of giving up the safety net of a monthly salary.

And then, out of the blue, the aforementioned prick-face from the 2000s resurfaced. He actually had the audacity to call me up, inviting me to a barbecue at his place with his family. He claimed to have changed, to be a more laid-back person now. Before I knew it, he offered me a job managing his office in the city where I lived.

I was facing some challenges at my current job and knew that staying there would only lead me to stagnation and frustration. Yet, despite all the previous unpleasantness, I decided to give prick-face's offer a chance. I was a bit too quick to forget and allowed history to repeat itself. So, I bid farewell to my cushy job and accepted prick faces offer of employment.

In my first week at the new job, it dawned on me that everyone in the tiny office of ten people was somehow connected to prick-face. His kids' au pair, his nephew, his cousin, even his ex-wife—they were all part of the equation. He would assign me tasks, and when I diligently carried them out, he would conveniently deny ever giving me those instructions. I soon discovered that he had spies keeping tabs on me at the office, reporting my every move, like when I popped out for a coffee. As if that wasn't enough, during the second week, prick-face started calling me every night, bellowing at me until the late hours.

Then, in week three, the last straw arrived. He called me at the ungodly hour of 7 am, ready to unleash his wrath once again. That's when I finally snapped and told him to stick his job where the sun doesn't shine.

So there I was, suddenly unemployed, relying on my pay check to support my family and elderly mother. I sat there in stunned silence for days on end, feeling lost and bewildered. But amidst the turmoil, I gradually realized that the only way forward was to pick myself up and embark on my own business venture. And so, with determination in my heart, I launched a one-woman recruitment agency, which is still going strong to this day.

Now, let me be clear—I absolutely despise prick-face with every fiber of my being. But in a twisted way, I have to thank him. He inadvertently steered me onto the path that led me to open my own business. If it weren't for his despicable behavior and the chaos he brought into my life, I might have never mustered the courage to leave my dead-end job and chase after my dreams.

You see, there's always a silver lining, even in the darkest of clouds.

Gail x

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