If I quit my job, what will I do instead?
Pity I can't afford to retire fully although given no male in my family has reached 60 yet that might not be true either! Probably should be though as two of those were somewhat self-inflicted and dad was cancer in the 80s.
But I can afford to quit this one if I choose to.
For a start it's been around 10 years which is much longer than i've had any other job for and whilst it's been often challenging and engaging there is always the fair share of frustration and baggage built up over such a span of time. For instance i've had years of work stuck in locked drawers unused. Stuff that should have been published, stuff that may even be published yet. It's even in an industry I don't particularly want to be a part of (not that I can think of any I do want to be part of!). On-top of all this there have been a good few years of very odd circumstances which only came to a head around xmas last year. Circumstances that while discussing with peers in hindsight appear to border on abuse. It was only though incidental rather than malicious intent but the cause doesn't affect the outcome. It's been raised and addressed but it feels too little too late since too much damage has been done that just can't be undone. Actually the initial reaction to the insight i've gained about the workplace itself in the last few weeks is that the whole joint is a complete fuckup and is a big reason i'm thinking of leaving sooner rather than later.
One other particular thing of note that crossed my mind over the last couple of days whilst reflecting on the whole period is that i've made absolutely no new friends during it - not a single one. And I don't just mean "real proper" friends you keep in touch with decades later which can be rare - I've had absolutely no social interaction with anybody outside of being at work itself (or lunch) or the annual xmas party. And the xmas party is mostly contractors i've never worked with. It's not entirely without reasons, to start with there just wasn't that many I did work with, and most people already have their lives done at this age. But it still does seem a little odd in hindsight given i've generally gotten on quite well with most of them and all the time involved.
Despite all this I've usually felt it was adequately compensated with lower and flexible work hours, an almost completely free reign in technology and implementation choices, and extended amounts of summer leave (even if it was usually due to funding shortages). But even these - as absolutely awesomely awesome as they are to me - have their limit of worth.
So I haven't decided yet.
One reason is of course what happens next. I don't really feel like i'm capable of much at all right now (look at the dearth of hacking on this blog for evidence) but that might be more perception than reality and it could change in the blink of an eye. I can however afford to take plenty of time to get my shit together if I need to (decades actually). Another is that I've never had to actually look for any job i've ever had and i'm generally pretty hung up about doing such things for the first time, yeah still. Due to working for Ximian/Novell and now these guys I don't have much of a local 'network', although it's not empty either. And my skills and interests are (probably?) not in much demand around this sleepy city outside of where I am now. Well obviously with my skills and experience I can code almost anything for almost anything (or quickly learn how to) but there's a lot of rather unappealing anythings out there that get coded and there's often some really poor technology taking up the flavour-of-the-month pedestal at any given time as icing on the cake.
If I decide in the positive will I manage to last out the remaining money for this year? Professionally one would think there is no question but personally once a decision like this has been made it will be hard to continue. I'm just a casual employee (no notice needed) and this is not an entirely professional matter I think. Another 3 months? Hmm.
I'll think about it some more I guess.
update: Told 'em. Well, we'll see. They don't want to let me go. I mean really not. I guess i'm worth something.