Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Unenjoyment 2010

As I write this I can't even believe that this has become my life. A year of hope for better things has pretty much turned into total despair with the arrival of the new year.

Today I spent 20 minutes waiting for a Dept of Labor person to get on the phone and explain to me why my benefits have expired, and why I'm not eligible for the new extension. I have so many questions that nobody seems capable of answering, and that the FAQs portion of the Unemployment website does not cover. My situation is complicated. I freelance, plus I was penalized for a stupid move I made over the spring. I have not actually received unemployment benefits since July. Basically forcing me to spend the last six months being a "slutty cowgirl" when there were absolutely no funds coming in. I have since paid my penalty, which would make me eligible for benefits again, no?

Which is why I called the Dept of Labor, and waited for 20 fucking minutes. I want someone to explain to me what my rights are, what I'm entitled to, what I have to look forward to. Because as much as $1600/week ain't much, it's better than nothing.

I finally got a dude on the line who I could barely understand. If there is an accent that sounds like marbles, then he had it. He could only speak to me at an elevated decibel, bordering on yelling, and spent a good ten minutes berating me. I'm not exactly sure why he was berating me, as his marble accent deterred me from understanding him completely, but I felt like I was talking to my dad circa 1986. It made me cry.

And, of course, when the call was over I still had no answers.

I'm stupidly putting off a visit to the Dept of Labor headquarters. The idea of standing on a line for an entire day in the hopes that I can speak to a person with half a brain is just too much for me to deal with. But I guess it must be done.

Full-time jobs are still few and far between. I was lucky enough to have a good 3 month streak of work at the end of last year, but I'm not confident that I will find more anytime soon. So my new obsession is thinking of things that I am passionate about that could translate into some sort of job. In no particular order, here is what I've come up with: sex worker, burlesque dancer, food taster, cocktail waitress, or mattress tester.

Of course, I could just give in and find a sugar daddy for once and for all.


Scott Jones School of Dance said...

I am so sorry. If you went to the DOLH, the wait may not be all day, you may get to speak to someone half decent, and you may be able to get your benefits. Sucks though.

Slutty cowgirl? I hope this means waitressing, but having to pretend to be a SC doesn't sound fun.

It's funny the other things you put before coctail waitressing :)

I hope things get better for you. Lots of people are in the same situation. You are not alone. My monopoly utility company has a hiring freeze right now, even when people are quitting/dying/sick.

~~Silk said...

"Because as much as $1600/week ain't much, it's better than nothing."

I keep coming back to this post to see if that number gets "corrected", or if anyone else commented on it. "Ain't much"? Entire families work hard for, and live, on less, even in your area.

Is that what you're getting as a SC? If so, that seems a lot! If it's what you get from unemployment, it blows my mind. In the extremely high COL areas around NYC, it's $800 a week.

I'm confused.

i like cheese said...

Silk, you are correct in being confused. I meant to say $1600 per month. Unemployment in NYC pays $400 a wk which barely covers my rent. Hope that clears up your confusion and males me sound like less of a spoiled brat. PS my hostessing job ie slutty cowgirl paid me $60 a week after taxes. Since you were curious and all.

i like cheese said...

Also in re-reading your comment I wanted to correct you...no one in nyc gets $800/wk on unemployment. All of nyc is a high cost of living area, and the MAX is $430/wk.