My Beautiful Wickedness


I don’t scare easy.
February 6, 2009, 1:49 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

The headlines today are making me a little sick. My god, I know so many people out of work. I know so many people losing their homes. My adult cousins are combining households, migrating back to the homesteads, hunkering down and preparing to hold on. Their trailers are being repossessed, but the company who is supposed to take them back doesn’t have enough workers to take them back (and the ice storm made all the roads too slick), so the former owners are just squatting and waiting for their homes to be taken away. They’ve put their furniture in my mom’s steel shed. They’re hoping that their home doesn’t get taken until it’s warm enough for them to live in the shed They’re living on Frito-Lays, PallMalls, and squirrel. AK Steel is starting up again, but only for a few days at a time. The men go in because it’s all they can do.

My job is, I think, safe…though clearly anyone teaching in a private college is going to have to wise up and realize that few families will be able to send kids to school full-time. My work will surely change, but at least I’ll have a job. It would be miraculous if my husband’s job endures more than another year. Restaurants and luxury-good stores are shuttering. Whatever industry was left is cut back to the bone. I live in a government town, but in a year or two, it’s going to look like a neutron bomb went off. Huge government buildings are going to be emptied of workers; the laughably overbuilt highways of Albany will be deserted. Our life is going to change and the changes will be hard. Change is life. Blah blah blah. Opportunities in change, yeah yeah. I get it. But this isn’t going to be good change. This will be change to cry over at night when the kids are asleep, change to darn and resew into the holes in our clothes, change to make our eyes old.

I guess I don’t mind so much for myself — my stay in the middle-class has been as a bemused guest worker and I haven’t been here long enough to feel entitled to stay — but I hate it that some greedy assholes on Wall Street and a group of nonchalantly corrupt politicians have sentenced my kid back to the struggle that me and my family have been struggling for hundreds of years. I thought, I hoped that my work was going to finally be the push that put us over the wall, that made her life and her children’s lives economically secure.

I just can’t express how disappointed I am about that.

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4 Comments so far
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I usually predict ‘gloom an’ doom’ It’s in my nature….

For Christ’s sake! People are *killing* themselves over this now, when they lose their jobs.

I have seen more and more co-workers, friends, just get walked out of the door.

It’ll happen to me, because of the gut trouble that nailed me again today. I just don’t know when.

And my family…if they go so far as to offer to take me in…
I just might have to do it.

And the politicians making a *show* out of this business…

Give me fifteen minutes and a podium. I’ll either have a stroke, or shame them into decency

Comment by imfunny2

My husband’s stuck in a job that he hates. He is verbally abused on a daily basis. But he has NO alternatives. There are simply no jobs out there for him. So many resumes sent, and nothing.

I try to tell myself that we’ll be fine. I joke that maybe Sallie Mae will decide to forgive student loans to help the economy. But deep down, I’m very scared. The dean’s told me that the college’s financial situation won’t be a consideration when I apply for tenure, but I’m still scared. Very scared.

Comment by Angela Gordon

My “stupid” decision to take the $65K or so that was in my 401k and the $30K or so that was in my Lump Sum Retirement account and put it into my house (mostly for purchase and rehab) and a very slow growth IRA seems to have worked out fairly well. I may starve to death, but nobody’s getting this house while I’m still breathing.

Comment by democommie

Interesting – your last paragraph. It’s fascinated me since I’ve known you that we share similar backgrounds (in a broad sense), yet what we took out of our experiences couldn’t be more opposite.

I will say no more – that conversation is best for email.

On a side note, all of these posts I’ve seen lately about how we’re entering Great Depression 2.0 have got me singing Billy Joel’s “I’ve Loved These Days”. It just seems so appropriate, if the curtain is indeed drawing on prosperity for good. I tend to be more sanguine, but my attitude is out of favor right now, so I’ll just keep singing.

Comment by Slartibartfast




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