I was fired once, actually fired. I don't mean semi-fired, like when I disappeared from the schedule at the IHOP, or when my teaching contract was not renewed after I refused to change a kid's failing grade. I mean actually actively fired, pack up, turn in your badge.
I was a cashier at the university cafeteria, and I was called into the office by my boss, Mr. W____, who asked me to explain how my deposit was 400 dollars short. I couldn't explain. I counted out 800 dollars, wrote 800 dollars on the envelope, slid it into the safe through the slot. And now he was saying there were only 400 dollars in the envelope?
How could that be? A mystery.
My boss did not find it mysterious. He fired me, and there were tears, tears all the way home, tears on the phone to my then-boyfriend Gary, who said, sympathetically, "You are clearly upset! So I won't see you tonight. I'll talk to you tomorrow."
A week later I was in my former workplace, eating lunch, and a fellow cashier told me that since I was last there another person had been called into Mr. W____'s office, again with a short deposit envelope, only this time Mr. W____'s boss noticed a pattern. After Mr. W____ refused to take a lie detector test, he himself was fired.
Cocaine? Gambling? We wondered, but that would stay a mystery. I had already nabbed a better job in the library days after I was canned, so I was actually better off. (In addition, Gary learned that when your girlfriend has been fired that is not a reason to break your date.)
I never had trouble getting a job after that, though I never tried for another job where I handled money. I never tried to clear my name, because I felt anyone who knew the situation knew the resolution. The nice thing is, nothing that awful has happened since.