May 2022: bad news are poison
Ugh, this month was much more about work than I had hoped, but I’ll try not to get too caught up in this.
As most people know by now, Klarna (and a bunch of other tech companies) announced a massive layoff last week. Luckily I wasn’t directly impacted by this and my job still stands, but it’s been a very emotional and chaotic week at work. There are still many things I can’t wrap my head around, but there’s really no point in dwelling on the details.
What is worth saying is that this whole situation definitely brought to surface many sentiments I have about the company and the tech industry as a whole, particularly when it comes to hypergrowth and this constant need for more, no matter what. I still feel pretty new to this career and it really bothers me that this is “just how companies are”. Am I just too naive to believe there should be a better way?
I’ve been mostly able to ignore how uncomfortable I feel working towards these goals because of how much I learn everyday and how it truly is a pleasure to work with the amazing people around me, but this last week made it harder to focus. In any case, tomorrow I start in a new team (which was already planned before things went awry) and I’m hoping the next weeks will bring some more clarity, if not from the company, at least on how I want to move forward.
On a happier note, we had our first pet sitting experience this month! My partner and I have talked about adopting a dog a few times, but are still unsure about the commitment (and also didn’t have the space until last month), so it was great to be able to have Yoshi for a week while my colleague was on holidays. And I can now confirm that Shibas are indeed very stubborn, but cute nonetheless! (I still can’t add images here, but he’s an Instagram dog!)
This month I also took another step into Germanness and bought a SodaStream! Although it’s probably more German to buy big crates of water bottles, for some reason.
(Added after I finished writing the whole thing:) With all of that I totally forgot to mention that I got a promotion! Bad news have a really nasty way of pushing through and making it hard to see the good things, but yes, that also happened this month. I’m officially a mid-level engineer according to Klarna standards and already feeling like I have so much to catch up to in terms of knowledge and expectations! Also maybe it’s time to spend some money on a proper chair…
I just realised I’ve only been to the movies once in May, to watch Everything Everywhere All at Once (Daniel Scheinert, Daniel Kwan, 2022). So refreshing and funny and highly recommended, especially if you know nothing about it, which is my favorite way of approaching a movie.
To compensate for the lack of movies, I’ve been to two (!) live (!!) concerts (!!!) this month. Hard to believe this is actually a thing again.
I’ve seen Kate Nash for the 4th time and I’ll see her again whenever I have the opportunity. She has such a good energy and it was so nice to see how happy she was to be on stage again. It also always feels extra special because the first time I saw her in Brazil (2011), we asked for a song (Merry Happy) and she couldn’t remember how to play it. She sat on the piano and tried to figure it out while we sang it. The second time she came she remembered that and told us this time she had prepared it for us. And she’s still playing it to this day!
The second concert was Adriana Calcanhotto, a Brazilian singer songwriter that I’ve always loved and finally had the chance to see live, it was great!
The last thing I’d like to mention/recommend is the Dark Matter exhibition. I’ve been hearing about it for months and I had a friend visiting last weekend so I finally made it to the other side of the city. And it was totally worth it. I particularly loved the Inverse installation (it reminded me of the movie Arrival) and the Grid. I could’ve watched it for hours. I might come back.
I’m slightly surprised to report I’ve read three books in the last four weeks!
Você não vai dizer nada by Julia Codo: I picked this book at random at a book stand in Brazil last month and can now say it was a very good choice. The title translates to “You won’t say anything” and it’s short stories about the beauty (and sadness) of human connections.
Notes on grief by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: I bought this book for a grieving friend but it turned out she already had it, so I’m keeping it to myself. I’ll probably read whatever Chimamanda writes.
Pedro Páramo by Juan Rulfo: last but definitely not least, a Mexican classic. In 2020 I tried one of those social media book exchanges where you send a book to someone you don’t know and other people send you books. To my surprise, a friend’s friend actually sent me a book, this book. I had never heard of it before and it took me some time to get to it, but I’m so glad I did. It’s kind of funny to read a book from someone you never heard of that inspired many others you actually know (like Gabriel García Márquez). A dream-like tale you can almost watch while reading.
And that's a wrap! Feel free to reach out if you want to chat. Until next month!
Written on a Tuesday in May, 2022