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November 19, 2008

Is that a yes or a no?

November 19. Day 142.

A few months ago, I submitted a small project to a large public service organization, as part of the consulting work that I do. (For those of you who have started reading more recently, I do occasional freelance work on the side of my grad school studies.) My supervisor replied with a Thanks, I'm really busy right now, but I will get back to you soon. And I never heard from him again. I emailed twice to ask if everything was okay, but no answer.

So I sort wrote it off, assuming he didn't like what I put together and didn't have the time or inclination to tell me.

But it kept gnawing at me. Was he just incredibly busy? Did he truly lack even the time to let me know, "I'm not going to use your work after all"?

For two months, I thought about calling him. But I put it off, since uncertainty was better than rejection. He works for a venerated institution, and I had been thrilled he hired me. But finally, this morning I did call, steeling myself for rejection. I reminded him who I am and which project I had been assigned to, since I was a new contractor. I asked if he was still interested.

"We've been pretty busy, dealing with this global financial situation," he replied. "But when things calm down, I'm going to use it. I'll be in touch in a few weeks."

I asked him if in the meantime, I should update the data or adjust anything, since a few months have passed since I submitted it.

That would be a good idea, he told me.

So, we're still on.

Gained: R-E-L-I-E-F.
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