Since it seems increasingly to be national pink slip time, a period of ""disemployment"" unequalled in decades, this hearty little self-helper may be a timely anodyne. (See also Morin, below.) To the market of the burgeoning battalions who are getting the axe comes one-time NFL football coach George Allen, who says he knows all about being fired. So far, he's been bounced four times (albeit mostly by the same employer). Eminent jocks, it seems, don't relish that bad news either. Along with his own experience, Allen provides virtuous parables from women's service magazines, tales of prudence from businessmen's journals, and bits-and-pieces that he's read or clipped on the subject in recent years. It adds up to basic, well-intentioned counsel for those who've been sacked. Whatever one's career, grace under pressure is the guiding principle. Have a game plan, says Coach Allen. He offers a few sample rÃ‰sumÃ‰s, along with some words regarding job interviews and self-discipline. There's nothing startling or unique about any of this, of course. It's much the same stuff that slick consultants--those professional firing squads who are paid to ease the hell of disemployment--offer at substantial cost to discharged executives or their erstwhile bosses. Still, the old locker-room exhortation to win one, not for the Gipper this time but for oneself, may be just the ticket in a society where the tactics of sports and business demeanor often seem fused. And if Allen's couple of hundred pages were meant, after all, merely to be his own elaborate rÃ‰sumÃ‰, it just may have worked: since his text was written, he's gone back headlong into football, the trade he loves best.