20081218

Serving up a "Soup Sandwich"

I can't remember exactly when, or the situation i was in, i first heard the phrase "Soup Sandwich". Go ahead... let your mind turn the phrase over to decipher it. I can wait... I served over twenty years in the Army National Guard. Before i joined i had never eaten eggs. I guess i had formed some sort of food prejudice against them or something, but a funny thing happened in basic training. We were being fed for breakfast: two pancakes or slices of French toast, two slices of toast, a piece of fruit, a bowl of cereal, two pieces of bacon/sausage, two glasses of juice, a glass of milk, and 2 eggs. Now after reading all that you would think... that has got to be enough even without the eggs... but you know what? It wasn't. I learned to two things... to barter, and to make a sandwich out of them. To this day it is still the only way i eat eggs. On average i was in uniform 40 out of 365 days, expected to train to the same standards as the full time Army, and all that while coordinating my duty with a full time career (and/or college) - not including being called up for active duty, flood/natural disaster duty, or other "critical" state missions. As you can imagine there were times when something unsavory was being "crammed down your throat" (not necessarily food - i think you get the idea). But when you are in the military you do not have the option of saying "no". You suck up whatever cards you've been dealt and drive on. It was a life lesson that has served me well over the years. But there are times when the situation you've been dealt does not have a "win" option. You are going to dive in, get messy, and look like _____ when it's all over. Now picture what happens when you try and eat a soup sandwich and i think you get the idea. :-) Well my career has been served up a "soup sandwich". My employer managed to position themselves out of the running for the contract which i currently work under. The good news is that my government "handlers" have expressed the desire to keep the people in place... \o/. Unfortunately it looks like my soon to be new employer has differing ideas as to what we should get compensation-wise. Don't get me wrong... i am very, very happy to know that i still have a job - especially in these tough economic times. The news is filled with layoffs, bankruptcy, bailouts, company failures, so to know that i will still be employed is huge, i just wish the situation was a little bit more palatable. There are times when you just need to scoop up that soppy bread and take a big honkin' bite of slop, let it dribble down your chin onto your nice collared shirt and khakis, and move on. Sure, you're messy, sure your not happy with the situation, but at least you are still up and moving. And for that i am very grateful to God. I am just still working on my attitude...

3 comments:

2nd Cup of Coffee said...

We went through a tough week a few days back, nearly 1/3 of my husband's co-workers lost jobs, and until the day the firings were officially ended, we never knew from week to week what would become of his job. He feels very much like the survivor of a terrible accident, with ambiguous guilt and all. Still, we are so very grateful to have a job, as you said. And I think the soup sandwich is a great analogy, a little like making lemonade from lemons, but with more imagery!

JOSEPH PETER said...

Wow ! I thought of giving a toast to the orphans during this festive season. Do you love Orphans ? I sometimes get this question put to me in a trance.

Ms. Coffee said...

I have no doubt you will make lemonade out of those grapes being handed to you!

You and your beloved are strong people and you will make it work somehow!

God still has you provided with a job; so now to figure out what His bigger plans are with this!

I can't wait to see the outcome.