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Posts Tagged ‘Recession’

I call us the Christmas party babies – the seven family members who celebrate their births during August and September. The Rocker almost always had a beach party in August; I remember painting a hundred rocks gold for a Dick Tracy treasure hunt one year. The Bride’s party, in September, was a bit easier rounding up (or rather down) a guest list since school had started. We could invite her whole class instead of the whole beach club. This was before Evites and cell phones people!

And today is Bob’s big day. Happy Birthday to my honey.

Bob is now officially older than dirt, um me, for a few weeks at least. He’s been celebrating early, recreating our time in Tuscany last year, by making pasta with Ms Berdelle’s vintage pasta machine. We figure he’s got the ravioli down, which is a good thing since our local Italian market was just demolished to make way for progress. Will this new chef be able to recreate Lazzaroli’s goat cheese and pear ravioli? He’s already perfected the classic spinach and ricotta.

And I must admit Bob’s fettuccini this week, paired with our home-grown-home-made pesto, was bellissima!

What to get the man who wants nothing? I married a guy who defined “Minimalism” long before it was cool. Every few years we go into a store to buy him the same number Levi jeans he’s been wearing since I first met him 57 years ago! No wait, he needed a new alarm clock this week so he tried battling it out at Target with incoming Vandy students. He lost. Only two small travel clocks were left on the shelf. So he gave up and drove home in a huff, reluctantly searching the evil Empire of Amazon.

Which only reaffirmed his opinion of shopping.

Tomorrow the Love Bug turns 7! I think she grew 3 inches this summer. I was lucky enough to have Nana Camp extended another week because she came down with an ear infection and persistent fever; unlucky for her, she missed her first week of second grade. We played games, watched Disney channel, painted with water colors, and once we even ventured out to the Farmer’s Market. So even though I wanted to give her a new bike for her birthday, she told me she wanted another American Girl Doll.

Now I hate, really hate to sound old, but when I was young we got ONE doll and lots of different clothes. That doll would even cry and wet her diaper! Sometimes our mothers would even sew the doll clothes, and if we were lucky we had a doll trunk or a wardrobe to keep everything nice and organized.

But the Bride had lots of Barbies growing up since her allergies only allowed for plastic toys. The price differential however of a 1980s Barbie and an almost 2020 American Girl Doll is off the charts. My effort to convince the Bug that she only needed one doll was futile.

We’ll have a small family party tomorrow, highlighted by my 3-layer carrot cake, the Groom’s favorite. She has already had a class party shared with one of her school buddies – now why hadn’t I thought of that?

How is it possible Labor Day is right around the bend? We’ve been thinking if the Second Coming returns from the G7 with his proverbial foot in his puckered mouth, we may have to reinvent ourselves and go back to work. I could always try selling my necklaces and Bob could start a pasta food truck! Here are my birthday babes learning all about honey!

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“Nothing and no one goes unchanged.” If I wanted to write my life story through a music score, this R&B classic would feature prominently. There was a time in my life when this song played non-stop in my car’s tape deck. Written by Benard Ighner in 1974, it was first performed by Quincy Jones, then later in 1977 brilliantly, of course, by George Benson. I most likely was driving through tears over some broken promise – very Dustin Hoffman rushing over the Golden Gate to rescue his lost love.

The biggest recession I’ve lived through was that 70’s show. Post-college and divorce, I filled out the application to be a stewardess for TWA (remember them). My older sister, Kay, was a Lipstick Feminist – flying for National Airlines in the 60’s when she had to ‘make weight’ and could not be married with children. My French was good and I thought I had half-a-chance for an international dream job. But TWA was laying off its pilots and instituted a hiring freeze. People were lining up for gas by the order of numbers in their license plates…that was a pretty bleak time. The Vietnam War was ending, and OPEC decided to quadruple gas prices. It was called “stagflation,” because it was a long period of time (1973-75, and some would argue until 1980) when high unemployment coincided with high inflation. The jobless rate peaked at 9%.

If we compare that time to this prolonged recession, it’s not fair to compare job growth. According to most economists, that number is a “…lagging indicator, which reflects economic conditions in the past rather than pointing to future growth.” Supposedly we’ve come out of a recession in 2009, though you couldn’t tell by most personal narratives. And now we’re heading into a “double-dip” or off the “fiscal cliff!” http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/05/23/fiscal-cliff-recession-government-action-cbo_n_1537692.html And here’s the quote that hits home:

“$1.2 trillion in across-the-board reductions in spending on federal programs would begin to phase in as a result of Congress’ failure late last year to find a comprehensive deal to cut the budget deficit.” One point two TRILLION!

What kind of job did I get back then? I took a job that was funded by a government grant. There was a need for mental health day treatment centers when the flood gates opened from ancient, closing mental institutions. Patients were being returned to their communities, patients who had no idea how to function in society after so many years of institutionalization. And I was hired to actually drive a mini-bus and pick them up from their group homes, and design group activities for them in a an entry-level social work position. Less glamorous than flying to Paris, driving through hallucinations in Pequannock, NJ. But it gave me a start when I thought all was lost.

So go ahead and blame Obamacare if you must. Keep trying to repeal it, try 33 more times to vote for selfishness, and corporate greed. Waste another 50 Million taxpayer dollars. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/11/health-care-law-repeal_n_1666917.html?ncid=edlinkusaolp00000009 We all know what has to change, and it’s this intransigent Tea Party Congress.

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