I got lured back this morning, by several contrite voice mail messages, a great deal of begging from the business manager and a promise of this week’s paycheck. Needless to say the newspaper owner’s manic behavior continued and there was no actual ‘pay’ in the paycheck, it was basically a promissory note asking me to wait until after “the first or second issue” to be reimbursed. Now there have been many many times in my life when I could be cajoled into something so foolish, but at 45 with my utilities winking on and off like neon lights on a Vegas strip, now isn’t one of them. And I really and truly draw the line at convincing freelancers to sign on for payment deferred, if I am going to ask folks to produce work, there sure as hell better be money in the kitty to pay them. So, on my second way out the door, I was informed that not only wouldn’t I be paid for any work I had done, but he was going to take me to court to get back the per diem he paid me last week. Yes, you can laugh, it’s okay – we all know there’s no blood in this stone.
Another week wasted, along with 312 miles, 543 cell phone minutes, some various faxing and photocopying, various office supply purchases etc etc. . . . but lesson learned. My New mantra: “Show me the money,” which if I am not mistaken is EXACTLY what my creditors have been demanding of me these days.