Being sacked - Heroism, ignominy, deserved, and undeserved

A very close family member ended up in rehab twice within the space of months a couple of years ago. He was back in the pub the evening of the second day of being released.

I was effectively primary carer. It was absolutely exhausting - and these things have a way plugging into one's own mental health issues. I slightly came apart at the seams as a result, and needed counselling help.

Any acknowledgment, or thanks? Nope. Not a bit. Not even a text message. Calls went unanswered.

A mutual friend ran into my relative in a pub some months later. Said relative said that 'he just wanted to be left to live' his life.

You can't help some. Some don't deserve it.

As someone who went through a very similar experience with a work colleague, I can absolutely sympathise. It is truly exhausting, and thankless thing to go through.
Someone else I worked with at the time said something wise that stuck with me: addicts are selfish people. Either they were, or they become so through the experience.
 

Oyibo

LE
Moving away from the depressing alcoholism tales (instructive though they are), I have another story of a missing person whose contract was not renewed. It starts thus:

A colleague came to my office to tell me he had a drilling engineer missing somewhere in Africa perhaps. I hate missing person cases.

After some questioning it transpired that the Saffa engineer had been working in Nigeria and had gone into a full-on breakdown due to divorce & kids etc. The local staff had realised he was cracking up so booked a flight from Lagos to Jo'burg, and then onto the Eastern Cape.

Fair play to the Nigerian staff - They escorted him right to the business lounge to make sure he was airside.

But he did not turn up in Jo'burg. He had hold baggage so the Nigerian authorities would have known if he had not got on board. His family hired a private detective to find him. No joy. I called the SA police service, no joy. And then the story eventually came out.

About an hour into the flight he started shouting that he had a bomb in the hold of the plane. The plane diverted to Libreville, Gabon where he was arrested rather physically. He went to court in Gabon and they decided that he was not guilty, but mad. So he was sent to a Gabonese mental hospital.

He eventually got back to SA where SAA tried to ban him from their flights. The courts decided that as he had already been found not guilty in Gabon, by reasons of insanity, he could not be charged again.

His contract was not renewed.
 
Between my military and contractoring careers I had three years in Port Moresby, wherein I had numerous PNG chaps/esses working for me. One of the areas in which some were employed was the heavy earthmoving/quarrying and concrete mixer trucks maintenance workshops.
I’d had occasion to administer two of the duty “three strikes” counselling sessions, as required by the PNG Labour Department, to one bloke, who was a very good tool-maker/mechanic, who and who had been remarked upon by his direct, expat, boss for high work ethic, ie working under vehicles during lunch/breaks etc and offering to do overtime.
His problems were mainly related to himself “counselling” his missus, and thereby causing mayhem in the employees accommodation in the compound, and receiving unauthorised visitors to his flat during nightimes (an infraction of his employee accommodation). He’d been referred to me for another chat, which would have resulted in dismissal, and did not appear at the specified time.
That PNG has a huge “raskol” problem is well known, and when the RPNG Constabulary came looking for him, it should not have come as a surprise when a couple of the other blokes casually mentioned “... it’s probably ‘coz he was going to get done for making homemade handguns” during all those extra working times. My PA came in to see me a couple of weeks later as he was waiting in the Sales Office, to ask if he could collect his tools, as he had a new job lined up! The RPNGC Commissioner mentioned to me that his work was very highy regarded amongst the Raskol element, and his prices were extremely favourable ...
Had to Google it...
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Back in the early 90's I used to work at a steel printing plant division as a Production Scheduler when one day a new Management VP called us all into the boardroom for a meeting. He started with "This division is bleeding money and dragging down the entire company. There are nine managers and supervisors sitting here today by the end of the month there will be five. I do not know who will be leaving but some of you will not be here!" To be fair he had a point the two Unions were running the place ragged, the Plant Manager was way out of his depth, and almost anyone could walk up to a printing line stop the press and change the schedule even in mid print to run their preferred job. The majority of my day was spent fielding customer complaints about why their job wasn't delivered on time. It was a nightmare.

Back in the meeting one manager basically fired himself within ten minutes.
VP (staring at an empty machine): "Where can I get a coffee around here?"
Tim: "The coffee machine broke."
VP: "There was a spare one at the head office, go see if it's still there." Tim F's off to make the call and pops his head back in the door, "Yep they still have it should I ask them to send it up?"
VP: "Gee I dunno Tim, I'm making some big decisions here, what do YOU THINK?" Tim was let go that afternoon.

I got fired three days later
.
The VP and the GM were out on the front patio talking to the Plant Manager (Bob) when I was asked to join them. Idle chat then wham......
VP: "Why did you pull that job yesterday for CBO (our biggest customer) that decision cost us 5 grand?"
Me: " I didn't, Bob told me to do it." Bob loses his shit...
Bob: " You're FIRED. GO PACK YOUR STUFF UP." He storms back into the building.
GM: "Well Alrighty then, what are you going to do now?"
Me: "I'm going to go back to my office and carry on doing my job."
VP: I like it, we'll chat later." Bob was let go that day. The VP put in a rule that NO ONE could stop a job that was already running unless I or he authorized it in writing before hand. What a difference that made.

Others were let go until there were six of us left. Near the end of the month I was sitting at my desk and the phone rang. It was the GM Howard, who was a part owner and a great guy to work for.
GM: "Steve, We need you to come down to the head office."
Me: "No, I'm not coming."
GM: (Laughing) "Waddya mean NO, I need you down here!"
Me: "No, I'm not coming. You come up here, everybody who leaves here to go there never comes back"
GM: "Your not getting fired you British twat get your ass down here." I went to the meeting.
.....and then there were five. I ended up as Plant Manager.

The thing is even before the 1st VP meeting the GM had whispered in my ear that myself and one other manager had been tagged to run the plant and provided we didn't drop a major bollock to consider ourselves safe. I worked there for seven years surpassing even the new VP who was fired two years later. I left on my own accord to start a new division within a Trade Show Display company. The greatest job I ever had until......
 
PNG “Tok Pisin” (=pidjin English, the major language for most of the population) for “rascal”, the term used to cover a multitude of antisocial elements who live off the illegal fringe ... which in PNG’s case seems to be about 60% of the population. With over 300 dialects, a common language has developed from the mixture of phonetic understanding of German and English, mixed with a considerable anount of the various dialects ... for example below: “road work ahead ... all car must stop ... lookout for red sign”. Very sensible, and can be quite poetic ie “lukim yu behain” means “see ya later”.View attachment 546090

The language spoken by the Belters on the @mazon Sci-Fi series The Expanse reminds me of Pidjin.
 
We had a large facility with around 45 Germans and half a dozen military based in Ord Svcs Viersen, not really part of the Depot, just sort of located there. The trade had another location just down the road in JHQ with a few civvy's, run by a Sgt. If they ever had a problem, or needed anything big doing we were the point of contact to help them get it done. We were only a small trade of 32 blokes from LCpl up to WO1 with no officers.

Early one Wednesday morning the WO1 comes strolling out to me and asks me where Sgt XXXXXX is, the bloke running JHQ. "Nope, sorry boss, not seen him since the last time he came here, why for?" I was assuming that he was at our place for a job and had buggered off to get himself some brealfast, or something from the civvy canteen. The boss then says, "He's been missing since last Friday when he went out for happy hour doing the rounds of the JHQ drinking dens".

I knew the bloke from before I was in the trade, he had been at the Depot working in our little outpost there as a Cpl. Having seen him perform several times those years earlier I knew he was a pisshead who did not know when to stop. His Mrs had apparently called RMP worried sick. RMP had informed his administrative boss in the Big House (JHQ). His boss had called our WO1 and things were not starting to look good, the boss man at JHQ had already said he did not want him back.

A couple of hours later SGT XXXXXX wanders into my area at work where I have some 30+ civvys in a huge open plan space. Well actually not so much wandering as swaying and staggering, he is shitfaced, wearing the same clothes from the previous Friday, gopping and stinking like a dosser who has pissed himself. I indicate my German foreman to go and get the WO1, he calls RMP, our man was banged up in JHQ, dropped to CPL and sent back to the UK.

Three weeks prior I had completed the RPC1 regimental course and was told I was getting bumped to acting Sgt and was off to JHQ to cover the job. On day one I was stood at attention in front of the JHQ admin officer and asked if I was a piss artist, or reliable. I told him I was reliable. He told me that I had a month to impress him. Six weeks later I got an official posting to JHQ and picked up Sub-Sgt on the next board a couple of months later. Out of 5 people eligible for promotion to Sgt and beyond I was the only one with no mental breakdown, money issues, or detected crime............what a fcuking trade.
 
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The language spoken by the Belters on the @mazon Sci-Fi series The Expanse reminds me of Pidjin.
As it should, because it is a constructed pidjin. Just one of several types of language or dialect that develop in reality when speakers of different languages intermix.
The city language heard in Blade Runner is another example.
 

Joshua Slocum

LE
Book Reviewer
We had a large facility with around 45 Germans and half a dozen military based in Ord Svcs Viersen, not really part of the Depot, just sort of located there. The trade had another location just down the road in JHQ with a few civvy's, run by a Sgt. If they ever had a problem, or needed anything big doing we were the point of contact to help them get it done. We were only a small trade of 32 blokes from LCpl up to WO1 with no officers.

Early one Wednesday morning the WO1 comes strolling out to me and asks me where Sgt XXXXXX is, the bloke running JHQ. "Nope, sorry boss, not seen him since the last time he came here, why for?" I was assuming that he was at our place for a job and had buggered off to get himself some brealfast, or something from the civvy canteen. The boss then says, "He's been missing since last Friday when he went out for happy hour doing the rounds of the JHQ drinking dens".

I knew the bloke from before I was in the trade, he had been at the Depot working in our little outpost there as a Cpl. Having seen him perform several times those years before I knew he was a pisshead who did not know when to stop. His Mrs had apparently called RMP worried sick. RMP had informed his administrative boss in the Big House (JHQ). His boss had called our WO1 and things were not starting to look good, the boss man at JHQ had already said he did not want him back.

A couple of hours later SGT XXXXXX wanders into my area at work where I have some 30+ civvys in a huge open plan space. Well actually not so much wandering as swaying and staggering, he is shitfaced, wearing the same clothes from the previous Friday, gopping and stinking like a dosser who has pissed himself. I indicate my German foreman to go and get the WO1, he calls RMP, our man was banged up in JHQ, dropped to CPL and sent back to the UK.

Three weeks prior I had completed the RPC1 regimental course and was told I was getting bumped to acting Sgt and was off to JHQ to cover the job. On day one I was stood at attention in front of the JHQ admin officer and asked if I was a piss artist, or reliable. I told him I was reliable. He told me that I had a month to impress him. Six weeks later I got an official posting to JHQ and picked up Sub-Sgt on the next board a couple of months later. Out of 5 people eligible for promotion to Sgt and beyond I was the only one with no mental breakdown, money issues, or detected crime............what a fcuking trade.
Thats last line is epic
detected crime !!!
My dads old chum never had his crime detected when he left the REME in 1960
he died a few weeks ago
my old man kept the secret
 

ACAB

LE
Also never been fired but once got a written reprimand (for exceeding my authority).

Framed it and hung it on my office wall.
I done that with Reg 7 (Service Complaints) But I hung them in the bog.
 
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JAD

LE
Thats last line is epic
detected crime !!!
My dads old chum never had his crime detected when he left the REME in 1960
he died a few weeks ago
my old man kept the secret
Go on then Joshua, let us in on yer old fella's blag. I'm sure that everyone else involved and from the same era will have let it pass by now.
Unless of course it was a bit of a unsolved "who done it" style murder mystery he was covering for. In that case, no wonder he kept his secret to the end; he didn't wanna get fired for it. I understand, careless talk and all that!
 
Go on then Joshua, let us in on yer old fella's blag. I'm sure that everyone else involved and from the same era will have let it pass by now.
Unless of course it was a bit of a unsolved "who done it" style murder mystery he was covering for. In that case, no wonder he kept his secret to the end; he didn't wanna get fired for it. I understand, careless talk and all that!
Allow me- after a day on the ranges, and upon declaring no live rounds etc at the declaration-failed to disclose the spitfire that had somehow ended up in his smock breast pocket.
 
With all this talk of evil employers, one top tip is to make sure your home insurance has legal expenses cover.

I reckon this saved me a good £40k in legal fees some years ago.
 
Back in the early 90's I used to work at a steel printing plant division as a Production Scheduler when one day a new Management VP called us all into the boardroom for a meeting. He started with "This division is bleeding money and dragging down the entire company. There are nine managers and supervisors sitting here today by the end of the month there will be five. I do not know who will be leaving but some of you will not be here!" To be fair he had a point the two Unions were running the place ragged, the Plant Manager was way out of his depth, and almost anyone could walk up to a printing line stop the press and change the schedule even in mid print to run their preferred job. The majority of my day was spent fielding customer complaints about why their job wasn't delivered on time. It was a nightmare.
I had a similar experience at my first ever Christmas conference with the company I joined after leaving the army.

All of the site managers, ops managers, HR managers etc were enjoying the annual winter conference at a delightful country hotel in North Yorkshire. The day's conference briefings had finished and we were sat at our tables after having dinner and copious amounts of free booze.

The company director stood up and started to give his summing up of the year's achievements and a look forward to the next year.

He said ( and I paraphrase),..

"Imagine this company as a ship and I'm the Captain, stood in the wheelhouse, looking down at every crew member who is essential to ensuring the safety of both the vessel and their fellow crew. I notice that the ship is listing heavily because certain crew members are more interested in lining their own pockets rather than ensuring the ballast tanks are working correctly.

Without everyone working as a team we will sink!

Now, take a look at the person sitting to your left and right whilst you are enjoying my hospitality this evening and I will promise you that the same people will not be sat here for the summer conference.

Merry Christmas to you all"

True to his word, over the next few weeks we lost several site managers and support staff that had been falsely claiming expenses & overtime payments and viewing porn on the firm's IT systems.

The blagging civvie cnuts.
 

HCL

LE
Allow me- after a day on the ranges, and upon declaring no live rounds etc at the declaration-failed to disclose the spitfire that had somehow ended up in his smock breast pocket.

Pah!

I was rocked up outside the Sgt's cubby hole with about 70 live blanks, the Monday after endex. They'd been in my gungy DPM's pockets that I tossed into a bin bag and repacked into the bottom of my large. At stupid o'clock after debussing, I loaded up the dirty gear into the washing machine and bogged off to my pit. Arose refreshed and awake to hang the stuff up and jingle jingle jingle they starred to tumble onto the floor. Oops! Being stupid, I gathered them up into a placky bag and stuffed them in my locker till after first works parade Monday.
Unfortunately our new Rupert happened to put his head around the door as my Sgt was holding up a handful of now very shiny, freshly laundered blanks.
"Morning Sgt, morning errr... HCL. What have you got there, Sgt?"
"Turn around sir, and go away. I'll fill you in later."
Sgt turns to me and says, "Get out of my sight. I will see you later. "
Later advice was given. I found Witch Hazel is very soothing on lumps and bruises. I recommend it.
Section Corporal later asks, WTF didn't you just bury them in the woods out back. Yes. I wondered about that too.
Lessons learned, 1) honesty is for fools and idiots, 2) see above re witch Hazel.
 

Mufulira42

Old-Salt
Having learnt quite a bit about Americans whilst living here now I actually find that some of their military training is akin the old Sov training. As an example the Sov's used to only teach their officers to use a map and compass. Everyone was in a professional military cubby hole and did not have a clue what went on in the military cubby hole next door unless specifically trained in that element.

I once had a REME armourer tell me that he had spent time with an American unit in Germany. Like all REME armourers he would use his issued hammer and screwdriver on any type of gat. Not so the Americans he told me, they had to attend specific courses for each weapon. My understanding was that they do their trade training and qualify on one weapon, go to a unit and start fettling that weapon. Then when the time was right they got sent on a course for another weapon, and so on.

I can actually believe that as I have attended factory run armourer courses for specific gats here and they are indeed short courses of one, two, or three days. Many of those attending were police armourers, or individual police officers and one time a couple of rotund chaps. The rotund chaps both worked as salesmen in a gun shop and had landed armourers jobs with a PMC in AFG but they had to attend several factory run weapon specific courses (at their own expense) before their start date. I would say that REME armourers are more like good general gunsmiths in comparison.
IIRC working alongside a well-trained Saffie armourer with scads of experience and know-how, the experience was tinged with a little bitterness at times as he recalled when in 5 Bde in Western Desert was damn near annihilated by DAK and speed was essential and lugging a great bag of Armourer's tools was not an option -- he demo'd quite often how a hammer/screwdriver combo could fix/repair a wide range of Small Arms.
 
Those Peruvians are such sticklers for the rules, and following the procedures, aren’t they?
Yeh. There was a judge here in the states that I'd heard about who used to enjoy a crafty tug while sitting at the bench hearing a case. No harm, no foul. One has to keep one amused during the long drawn out arguments of the attorneys.
 
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