Like anyone who has ever had a job—I have fantasized about quitting my job frequently, especially when ridiculous things happen. How empowering and rewarding would it be in to pick up your purse in the middle of being yelled at by your boss, grab your coat, walk for the door and just say, “Guess what? I quit.” I’ve had this little fantasy running through my brain every time I’ve been called down to the carpet for something. Sometimes it’s so vivid in my mind that for a horrifying moment I think I’ve actually said something out loud.
However, when it came down to actually giving my notice yesterday, the whole exercise was surprisingly civil. And to clarify, for the vast majority of those I work with I have ZERO animosity and I even will really miss working with them. But for maybe a few key players, I was really looking forward to saying the things I’ve choked down for the past year. Mostly out of fear of the repercussions, which in my mind always lead eventually to me turning tricks and living in a box by the river. So when I turned in my little piece of paper, a carefully crafted gracious letter of resignation, somehow it felt like a breakup where you think of all the terrible things you want to say to your ex, but instead you just end up giving him back his CDs and wishing him well. And while the vindictive, insane part of my brain is kicking the back of my eyeballs screaming, “you should have said THIS!” overall I’m glad I was tactful and diplomatic.
They say revenge is a dish best served cold, and I think everyone at one point in their lives has imagined themselves to be Robert DeNiro’s character in “Cape Fear,” doing sit ups in a jail cell, laying in wait to take revenge upon those unsuspecting fools who wronged you. My five year high school reunion is coming up, and I can’t tell you how much I wanted to come back with a huge diamond ring on my finger, a lawyer/doctor/Jew/ on my arm, and 30 lbs missing from my frame. That would show ‘em—all those assholes who were mean to be in High School.
Another thing they say about revenge, however, is that the best revenge is living well, and the more wisdom and life experience I gain, the more I realize how true that really is. This is why I’m not going to my high school reunion. And that’s why I have every intention of making sure that I leave work on the best possible terms—instead of ripping off my clothes like the incredible hulk and flipping over desks on my last day. Because I don’t need to exact revenge for all those times I was made to feel like a child, or the late hours I worked without so much as a “thank you”, or the times I was yelled at over something for which I had no responsibility. My revenge will be living well. And in a little less than a month I’ll be in Baltimore. And I’ll be living well.