Tag is exactly jobless
2020-10-15Just a couple weeks ago I adopted a nine week old mini australian shepherd puppy, named Ozzy, who is in the photograph. There were many factors that went into adopting my first ever puppy, and a lot of it had to do with the world pandemic: coronavirus. All summer while everyone was staying inside their houses quarantined, I was out working at a breakfast restaurant. Of course, all employees wore masks, but not every customer that walked into the restaurant was aware of the severity of the pandemic. Some would refuse to wear masks, even though it was a state law, cough or sneeze in your face, while being ruthless and careless. Although the government is showing action by recommending everyone to wear masks, it is not necessarily helping the current state of our country. I believe that more action needs to be taken for the pandemic to be resolved or improved. This led me to leave my job, and spend more time at home to protect the safety of me and my family. Scrolling on the internet with all my free time I saw that a lot of dogs were in need of a home due to shelters and pet stores overflowing. This led me to find the most perfect puppy, and now he is a part of my family. Contrary to my beliefs there is always a bright side in unfortunate situations. Ozzy turned out to be the light at the end of the tunnel, providing me with the happiness I was missing in the past few months due to the declining state of the world.
2020-08-10T01:26:13-04:00The day we entered quarantine was one of the most bizarre days I can remember. I was working my normal shift at the restaurant, and the dining room was completely empty. This in itself was strange for a place usually running on a few hours wait and constantly full of people. There had been talk about the restaurant closing its doors, but the thought seemed so absurd that no one really believed it. The air felt heavy, and my manager was nervously pacing around taking call after call. As I waited for guests to arrive I robotically folded my linens wondering if I was going to have a job in the coming days. The TV above the bar flickered with images of people in masks, hospitals filled with sick patients, scientists and doctors on podiums at the White House, the President trying to calm the public, and the words CORONAVIRUS UPDATE. I looked away. I felt like I couldn’t escape the impending disaster. I was supposed to work a double shift that day, March 16, but after not getting a single table, my manager sent me home and told me not to come in for dinner. I could see the stress etched on his face as he told me he would be let me know what was going on as soon as he knew. I learned the restaurant group was probably going to close all its restaurants for “two to three weeks.” Little did we know that it would be much longer. I drove home on deserted roads. I played no music and instead sat in silence trying not to panic about whether or not I would be jobless soon. I remember my dad texting me to go get gas in case the gas stations closed and pick up any groceries I may need for my apartment. What kind of times are we living in? Unprecedented times. It was surreal. When I got back to my apartment my roommates were both home. They informed me that for the next nine weeks they were instructed to work from home. I immediately packed a bag and headed for my parents house (at least I’d have more room and it would be quiet). I ended up spending most of the quarantine with my family. The restaurant I worked at closed for over three months. I had to file for unemployment and only received a fraction of what I used to bring in while employed. Times were tough. My dad, a pilot for American Airlines, took a six month leave, and I was glad to know my family was safe at home. The news never strayed from constant Covid-19 updates: potential vaccines in the works, testing sites erected all over the country, lockdowns across the globe, borders closing, toilet paper shortages, unemployment numbers skyrocketing, business failing. The good news never came, only a bombardment of the bad. The days seemed bleak. One day flowed into the next, and the weeks became an unsettling blur of constant unease and unrest. It seemed that the condition of the sick went from bad to worse. Death tolls increased by the day. The only thing left to do was pray, occupy your mind so that you wouldn’t become sick with worry, “find a hobby” they said, “learn a language” they said. I prayed with my family. We streamed mass every Sunday, and for that forty five minute service there existed a glimmer of hope, structure, and strength. I tried to be strong. I tried not to let my family see how much stress I felt at the thought of the struggling families going without paychecks and the exhaustion of workers on the front line. I tried not to think about my grandparents alone in their dark house with no one to check on them- only a daily phone call for months on end. I could hear the sadness in their voices when I called. “It shouldn’t be much longer now” I’d say, but my words sounded hollow. My family has a strong faith. I leaned on my family more than I had in a long time during the quarantine, and I witnessed my parents’ united display of trust in God. They had faith that things would get better, that humanity would prevail, and that we’d come out of this stronger. I listened to them say the rosary every night as they prayed for the sick and struggling world. It was all they could do, and they said it with as much conviction as they could muster. Praying provided them comfort, and I found myself chiming in, sitting with them as they closed their eyes and raised their concerns to God. As I returned to work in late June things had drastically changed. The world as we knew it was gone and in its place was a fractured society slowing healing from the devastation of Coronavirus. The generosity of the guests as they returned to the restaurant was like nothing I’d ever seen before. People went the extra mile to help each other as we integrated back into some level of normalcy. I saw one of the darkest times in recent history overcome with the most eye opening displays of kindness, understanding, and commitment to helping each other out. Experiencing the quarantine was a profound moment in my life. Not only did I find strength in my family and my faith, but also in my fellow man as we navigated these unprecedented times together.
March 25, 2020I am jobless, and RIT is doing little to help. Many of my peers are in a similar situation where RIT is not paying them for shifts they were scheduled for (me that’s hockey games) but either got cancelled or suspended because of Cuomo’s order. I am unable to make rent for next month without this pay, and I am incredibly stressed and frustrated. I am disappointed in my college for their decisions on student employment and payroll, and how my requests have been denied without proper explanation. Pay your student workers for the shifts they were scheduled for. If I could give a message to myself at the start of this semester, what would I say? Save, save, save.
2020-05-30This short video discusses the plight of a LGBTQ person who is forced to return to an unaccepting home environment after losing her job due to the pandemic. This is another example of the ways that Covid-19 has impacted the LGBTQ community in struggles unique to the community. I never even thought about this as a potential problem because I am fortunate enough to have a family that accepts me for who I am. It makes me worry for LGBTQ youth who were able to move out on their own and get away from a toxic home life.