Tuesday, December 9, 2008

An Economy in Turmoil Brings Our Hands Back to Life

While I was growing up the last thing my father wanted me doing was working in the union like he did. A Wallpaper Hanger his whole life, he paid strict attention to his union stamps, always made sure he worked on the books and never touched his annnuity. "Just put as much into it as possible and pretend it's not even there." He'd tell me this in reference to building my 401K, a similar parallel to his annuity. Although he was blue collar and worked his ass off for thirty-five years, he's now 56, retired, and living comfortably off his pension and annuity.

I went to my auto mechanic the other day because my brakes were yodeling like a jingle for swiss chocolate. Practically before I even put that puppy in park for the peek up-the-skirt, I find out I need new struts, new maxi-pads, a rubber rotation, a leather fan belt and some feathered pasties. 'It'll be $657.25." "Are you serious???! What if I pay you cash?" "Well we can take the tax off, so that'll getcha somewhere round $600.00." Honestly, what occupation can you completely tell someone they need something that they have no idea what they really need, and make $600 cash for it? You might say Orthodontist but those laughing g-asses have layaway plans and payment periods like Capital One. Here they'll take a tire rench to ya if ya don't fork ova the cash!! Ok, maybe that's from a movie, but imagine, this could've been one of possibly 5, maybe even 10 jobs his business had completed throughout the day.

I like to make a point so I'll tie these together....two occupations off the top of my head ( the union's have at least 50 different occupations like painter, steam fitter, electrician, operating engineers, iron worker, etc.) that were never even a glimmer in my hopeful college graduate mind. That right there's where we're thinking single-tracked. College was supposed to mean successful career, and that was never synonymous with auto mechanic or paperhanger. So why now would these ever make for decent options? Well, although manual labor might make you dry heave in the middle of christmas dinner, in an economy like this you're jumping into a pool of sharks just competing for corporate occupations paying 50K. Also, when contemplating a undergrad or graduate education that's worth a shyza, student loans tend to sink your battleship through monthly puncture wounds. As private universities are concerned, if their domestic economy shits the bed, they're not going to wash the sheets, what do you think they're Motel 6? They import cleaner more expensive ones, around 200,000 ply; thicker than a spring break foam party. "You no likey?? No buyee." I think this is going to surge a movement toward manual labor occupations and a candle-lit resurrection of the dying arts of our immigrant grandparents. Unless of course we just take our bailout money and invest it in cheaper labor and the construction of operating plants overseas...which dilutes our intellectual capital even more and adds goodness to the bellies of those who might otherwise despise the US. If that's the case I'd rather put 100 jobs online for anyone willing to cut the heads out of 1-dollar bills so they could be mounted on urinals right in the perfect spot to piss, like that black fly you see every once in a while...this way we don't have wet pants from the deflection of our own excrement and our money at least was used to cheer up the lives of those who continually put money into it every paycheck. Sorry, there is one positive, and I shouldn't forget to mention it....for those patient renters out there.......you might finally be able to afford a home soon enough. Co-signer, anyone?

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