The recession is staying in the house on the weekend because you don’t have enough money to go out with your friends. Even if they agree to pay the cover charge then you still can’t afford to have a drink so what’s the point?
And if your friends agree to buy you drinks in addition to paying your cover, then you would still rather stay home because you feel as though having to depend on someone else to provide for you all night would be the equivalent of having your pride publicly mutilated.
Speaking of pride, behind the more than one million lost jobs, pride has to be the most significant casualty of the current economic collapse.
For it is very difficult to be proud while explaining to your six-year-old daughter why she can no longer be in gymnastics, why she can’t have a jumper at her birthday party and why you can’t take her to the movie theater. It seems that pride, like full time work, is a thing of the past. Right now full time work sounds like one of those long lost things that the old folks speak so highly of – like listening to a championship boxing match broadcast live on the radio.
Last Labor Day, President Obama spoke candidly about the recession. He spoke directly to the masses of unemployed Americans when he said, among other things, that when you lose your job you lose “a sense of purpose.” It was a great speech and he appeared to be as genuine as any politician can possibly be, but somewhere along the way he lost me.
I applaud the President for trying to empathize, but he can’t. It’s just that simple.
I think it is impossible for not only the President, but for the majority of Americans who are gainfully employed to understand what it’s like to have an education that is virtually useless because there are no jobs. And to spend your whole life avoiding every pitfall the ghetto has to offer, earn a Master’s degree and not only be broke, but be worse than broke because you’ve accrued a massive amount of debt – $45,000 to be specific – and I never thought that I would feel like such an idiot for going to school.
There is a stack of bills on my dining room table. Often times I can pay them in a timely manner, but sometimes I can’t. I look at them and they make me drowsy. I yawn into my hand and smell my own breath, which serves as a rather rancid reminder that I haven’t been to the dentist in more than five years. One of my friends tells me that there is a dental school in the city that cleans teeth for cheap, but unfortunately for me, cheap is too expensive. When it comes to a dentist, I can only afford free.
There are millions of Americans who are struggling just like me, most of whom have it far worse than I do, and I suppose that should make me feel better, but it doesn’t. It only makes me feel more dejected as I wonder will the economy improve or will the hope of a country be the next casualty of this ghastly recession.