Running into the person who fired you is kind of like running into an ex (the one who dumped you, of course). You ideally would look your best-10 pounds lighter, having a great hair day, wearing your hottest new outfit. You would have a fabulous new job (or relationship, or both) to brag about.
Unfortunately, you usually run into your ex when you're sweaty, haven't bothered to brush your hair, and are carrying a load of laundry and perhaps a pint of Ben & Jerry's Chubby Hubby. You probably smell.
Likewise, it's pretty much a given that you'll run into your former boss, aka "the one who fired you," in less than idyllic circumstances.
It's probably for that reason that I became certain that my nemesis was on a flight I recently took from West Palm Beach to New York City. I wasn't paying a lick of attention, and then suddenly I was right next to her. Her head was down, revealing that particular shade of brassy blonde hair with the dark roots. She was reading a collection of fashion magazines. Her nails were that coral color I couldn't get out of my head, and honed to sharp points.
It all seemed like bad destiny-including the fact that I was trapped right next to her as the man in front of me wrestled his bag into an overhead compartment.
If she happened to look up, and I knew she would, what in the world could I possibly say?
But when she did look up, it wasn't her. Not this time.
Still, I know that someday it will be, and I'd like to be prepared.
Back when I was first laid off I had revenge fantasies of tripping her on a flight of stairs, throwing a martini in her face, or orchestrating her firing, which I would then somehow witness. Not that I'd really do any of that, but ... it felt good to imagine.
Now that it's 2010 and I'm going to be a much better person and all, I'm just wondering, have you ever run into the person who fired you? What happened?
And if you haven't ... what would you do if you did? Share your stories in the comments below.