Fashion, Travel + Place

“Quitting cherry bomb” outfit

My first real quit: DirecTV call center, February 2002. Crippling social anxiety and a lifelong phone phobia had my number, so I excelled at awkward pauses, nervous laughter, and average call times.

Even if custom designed by the damned to torture me singularly, no greater corporate hellscape could exist. With its fluorescent lighting. Forced cheery attitude. And “this call will be recorded for quality assurance”s.

This “O Fortuna” doomed workplace realization hit hard on September 11th, 2001. I squirmed in a vaguely ergonomic desk chair, staring up at the reality show terror on the big screen surrounds, while numbly guiding shell-shocked midwesterners through common billing question. This, I’ve come to learn time after time, is what we do during a disaster in America. Put on our capitalist blinders. Pretend everything’s normal. Vainly attempt to blandly exist.

Blessedly, in the back of my mind, I had a plan. An Edward Abbey-style monkey-wrench one to wander in the wilderness for months on end. Every needling workaday torture concealed the tiny gem of my freedom. I put in for a two-week vacation when I finally earned the PTO. But really I put my hidden plan into motion. I disconnected my landline. Cleaned out my apartment. Departed for the desert. Never to be seen (on DirecTV) again.

This recent quit was more professional…everything wrapped up in tidy LinkedIn-approved bows. Underneath, tho, the quitting spirit is the same. You know exactly when you light that fuse. You watch the slow burn until it blows. And boom you are the smokeshow.

Poof. Cherry.

Onia Kelly black cherry one piece swimsuit – $60, Poshmark | gold studded Boy Scouts of America official uniform green cargo shorts – $5, Restyle thrift store | purple & black sarong wrap – gift | Dolce Vita sage green velvet slip-ons – $7, Idaho Youth Ranch thrift store | green agate stone three strand necklace, 8,000,000 Turkish lira (in 2004, this was like, $6), Istanbul street vendor

Cheep it at The Great Resignation on Isla Mujeres.