In Praise of Union Jobs

Anyone who is leery of those of us who work in union jobs I dare say has bought into the divide-and-conquer tactics of the government.

I make the case for getting a union job as opposed to a job with a private employer.

My experience sheltering in place in the time of the COVID-19 outbreak in New York City gave me the idea to write in detail about the benefits of having a union job.

Not a lot of union jobs exist anymore because of the union-busting tactics of the government as well.

My job is a union job for city employees. While the library has shut down we are getting paychecks every two weeks.

Having a union job that offers a perk like automatic paychecks in a crisis can make the difference between affording to pay your rent or mortgage and going into debt just to be able to live.

In 2000 when I graduated library school I chose not to pursue a job in a library in a legal or corporate office.

Decades later I’m glad I choose to get a union library job.

With a union job your chance for a promotion isn’t linked to the whim of whether your supervisor is willing to give you that chance.

With a union job you often have a pension when you retire which is now rare for private business jobs.

With a union job you could have the benefit of signing up for a 403(b)–a retirement plan for nonprofit agencies that is like a 401(k) for private employers.

With a union job you might have the benefit of an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) to get counseling services and financial help information.

With a union job you could possibly be able to use free legal services to hire a real estate attorney or a lawyer who can help you create a will for free.

What’s not to like about a union job?

In New York City you can go on NYC.gov to find civil service and other government jobs.

The number-one benefit of having a union job is that you cannot summarily or capriciously be fired or laid off.

You have protections in place as a union worker.

In a coming blog entry I’m going to talk about the benefit of an Employee Assistance Program (EAP).

Engaging Your Mind in a Time of Crisis

While I’m no fan of the president who I’ve taken to calling Mr. Toupee over the years I’m impressed with one thing he said in a speech concerning life in the time of the CO-VID19 outbreak:

“All Americans including the young and healthy should engage in learning from home.”

It impresses me that a president who rules the country via Twitter fiats urged us to flex your mental muscles as a way to cope.

Not only did Staples deliver my ink and paper so I could continue my writing projects at home:

Amazon is set to deliver a book to my house.

Reading books and magazines would be in my estimation a productive use of our mental energy when we’re sheltering in place.

For you watching TV might be a pleasant way to pass the time when you’re sheltering in place. By all means continue to watch TV should this give you great joy.

Watching TV sitcoms all day on a good day is my version of a great way to dull my mind if not outright damage my mental health.

To keep my mind sharp and alert I’m reading a book one of my friends published last year.

Talking on the telephone to my family also helps me ride out this crisis.

Like I said the number-one act of healing for me has been to use the creative process to express myself.

So when the ink and paper runs out I’ll fire up the credit card and order new ink and toner from Staples.

We’ll get through this together.

Americans have always been resilient in the face of hardship.

Flexing your mental muscles?

I’m all for this as a game plan.

Eating Well in a Time of Crisis

Italians like I am eat to live more than we live to eat.

The Mediterranean Diet has been touted since the early 1990s as a healthful eating plan.

The number-one goal in a time of crisis as I see the goal is to keep up eating healthfully consistently every day.

From FreshDirect I order an organic CSA box of Lancaster Farms produce. It costs $39 and contains a mound of cheese and carton of eggs as well as 5 types of produce.

Either stopping eating or eating too much is the drawback in a time of crisis.

So far I’ve snacked my way through 3 bags of potato chips. Yes–you heard me right–3 bags of potato chips in 2 weeks.

I quickly threw out the 3rd bag of chips before it was all gone. The snacks are gone for good. And I won’t be ordering anymore chips at all from the online grocery.

Not bringing junk food into your house in the first place is the foolproof tactic for eating well in a time of crisis.

I’ve learned to cool it out with the chips and the pretzels.

Having breakfast lunch and dinner is imperative when you’re told to shelter in place indoors and not go out.

My goal is to have dinner before nine o’clock at night. Preferably by eight o’clock.

Eggs are great to have for breakfast.

Soup or salads are good to have for lunch.

Dinner can be as simple as turkey or chicken and a vegetable.

I was pleased to find out I could order healthful organic turkey burgers from FreshDirect online. They come in a 4-pack.

The CO-VID19 outbreak is no joke. Stay indoors when you must.

More to come in the next blog entry.