I have news – um, News. Front-page news. Shout-it-to-the-world news.

I have a job.

After 8-1/2 months of grueling, relentless and terrifying job searching — yes, read that again, 8-1/2 monthsI have finally arrived at an open door of someone who is willing to give me a job.

I don't know whether to cry from exhaustion or dance for glee; some of each.

I have a job! So why am I not bursting out of my skin with unbridled excitement? I'll tell you, in two words: Mercury retrograde.

I'm an unofficial and unpaid astrologer. And Mercury turns retrograde on Thursday and remains in reverse motion for 3-1/2 weeks, until May 30, when it resumes direct.

I've written of Mercury retrograde before and am in no mood to do so again, repetition gets boring. Suffice it to say that it's as they say: Starting a job in a retrograde is ill advised, actually on the Merc retro list of Don't Do's (If You Can Avoid It). If doing so, prepare for it not to last or work out. For there to be surprise developments of the unfavorable sort, headaches, annoyances and detours and an all-around itchy dust that can't be shaken.

With a couple exceptions, best advice I'd offer someone starting a job in an MR is: Keep your eye on the exit door. Your expectations of it working out low. And your patience and flexibility high.

I know all this from my studies. Also, since I'm a skeptic in all things, I put the retrograde-and-jobs theory to the test. Experience is my teacher. Before I was a doubter, now I'm a believer.

When does my job start? Right-o. Three days into the retrograde.

I should add there's some cause for optimism. Because I've applied to this job before — well, not this one but the catering/banquet services –  that past connection serves as a sort of teflon coating during the upcoming retrograde. It's complicated and cumbersome to explain astrologically so you'll just have to take my word for it: The hotel kitchen job stands a better chance of working out than normally under the retro influence.

Still, I'd be remiss not to keep my eyes wide open and silly to settle in for the long haul.

Whew. That was hard to convey.

The job? The job that took me nearly nine months of wading knee hip waist chest neck deep in the murky terrifying waters of the economic cesspool to land? Aide in a Best Western hotel kitchen. (Not my career but it beats unemployment.)

Saturday I start. At 8 a.m. How I'm gonna pull that off will be tricky, my bedtime's about 4 a.m.

What'll I be doing? Well, let me ask, what's Sunday? Why, Mother's Day. And where do many folks go on Mother's Day? Brunches. And the hotel's having a big brunch buffet so come Saturday I'll be chopping and dicing and slicing and whatever else needs to be done in preparation for the buffet that's expected to serve a few hundred.

This should return some good stories for the blog.

Finally, for the Just When You Think Things Were Settled department:

On my way home from that interview yesterday, I got a call. Couldn't answer it because I was driving. Yes, I'm one of those freaks of nature who doesn't talk while driving! Gasp! Who takes my responsibility behind the wheel seriously. Say it ain't so!

Turned out to be a call from a deli. They want to interview me. Today. They're looking to fill slots this week.

And while I've unofficially (no signed papers) committed to the hotel kitchen job, for various reasons it behooves me to take a look at this deli gig across the bridge in the next town.

A job that {drats!} too starts in a retrograde! It's cosmic hilarity that after three-quarters of a year looking for A Job Any Job that two interviews land in my lap for jobs both starting in a retro.

All of which summarily tidies up to this:

Sometimes you win the jackpot. And sometimes you win reprieves from homelessness and shelters. And I'm down with that.

So, my friends, circle 'round in celebrating this muy excellent news! I'm soon to be officially employed again – somewhere!

The bar's now open {ding ding ding}. Whatever your pleasure! It's on me!

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