At lunch I saw a table full of people from my old job: the President, Vice-President and Sales Manager. Just over eleven years ago these people fired me because I complained about the scarily incompetent manager of my department. After a day of closed door conversations I was fired for incompetence. It was shocking and unfair and very good things happened because of it. I've been at my current company for eleven years now. If they had no fired me I might still be working for that incestuous little business.
I had to smile to see them. They look the same and much older at the same time. The Sales Manager looked pasty and sick. I had a crush on him for a while, wonder if he is still a volunteer fireman. I didn't recognize any of the others at the table. I spent so many years ranting about the unfairness of the way they fired me and feeling bitter. Today I don't care much. I wonder if they are still dysfunctional in that special multi-generation family business way. Does the customer service manager still sleep with the factory manager? Does the president's wife still come in to help out during the busy season and piss everyone off? Do the brothers (Prez and Vice-Prez) still share that huge office in the center of the building?
I used to envision returning there one day to show them just how wrong they were to let me go and how successful I'd been away from them. Today I just wondered if I looked at all familiar to them as I passed their table with laughter in my eyes.