Monday, December 01, 2008

whatever you do, don't ask "what's next?"

because i'm telling you -- you don't want to know.

could be the neighbor (the guy who's been carrying on a clandestine affair for five years) who is laying off half his company and taking a pay cut. sure, maybe he deserves the bad karma, but his family and employees don't.

could be the missus, similarly laying off people at her office -- i don't believe there's any parallel affair to report.

could be the friends -- one a realtor, one a residential construction contractor -- who now are struggling to keep their family together. because homes aren't selling, and because his company went out of business. so he's gone back to a previous vocation -- working on a crab boat in alaska. he's 50 years old.

could be another neighbor -- a carpenter who has done much work around our house. he hasn't had a significant project in weeks, and isn't talking about any on the horizon.

could be the friends on queen anne. she's an elementary school teacher hearing rumors that her school might be on the "closing" list. this on the heels of a report that washington state is drastically cutting education funding due to major budget shortfalls.

washington mutual -- bankrupt and bought out by jp morgan -- is laying off 80% of its employees in seattle. that's 3,400 jobs.

the dow dropped 680 points today, the recession was declared "official," and george bush declared he was "sorry" for all the hubbub. [note to george: fuck you.]

i realize these little anecdotes are the tip of a much scarier iceberg. that the PNW will probably fare better than the rest of the country -- not to mention the rest of the world.

but we're not out of order to speculate where the bottom might be, and when we'll get there. and how long it might take for all of us to get back to where we were, 401(k)-wise.

we're not out of line to ask, "how did this happen?" reasonable people can be forgiven for inquiring, "what the fuck?"

but whatever you do, don't ask...that question above.

right now it just doesn't seem wise.

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