The LinkedIn Gift of the Magi

"It's good to see you."

"You, too. I can't believe it's been three years."

"I know. I was glad to hear from you. I really needed a happy hour this week, too. Work has been a bear. We're way understaffed. We've had four positions open for months."

"Good. I mean, bad about being understaffed."

"Yeah."

"I have to admit I had a specific reason for asking you to meet up."

"I know."

"You do?"

"Sure. You don't just reach out to a former coworker on LinkedIn because you are looking to be buddies."

"I guess that's true."

"I came because it's a great idea. I liked working with you. It would be cool to work together again."

"Wow. I thought I was going to have to sell you on the idea."

"Not at all. In fact, I already quit."

"What?"

"I quit my job. I can start any time."

"What?"

"I'd love to come work with you. I can start any time."

"No. No, I quit my job. I was hoping to be able to come work with you."

"Oh."

"Yeah."

"Shit."

"Seriously shit."

The two men drink their beers in silence, thinking about worse things than having a watch chain but no watch or having hair combs after cutting your hair short.

Particularly the hair thing.

After all, hair grows back. All you have to do is wait. You don't have to fill out job applications or write cover letters or (hopefully) go on interviews in a job market that has not fully recovered.

At least the guy in the O. Henry story brought his wife a present (albeit one that was useless to her). All these guys were bringing home to their wives was the stench of beer and some fight fodder.

This is not a story of wise men.

This is part of Fiction Friday. Read more short fiction and creative writing here.

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