Friday, October 9, 2009


The numbers on the spreadsheet were a rude awakening. It was horrifying to see it all laid out in black and white. In the space of three years our net worth had plummeted from just short of three million down to just short of three hundred, and I don’t mean three hundred thousand, I mean the three hundred with those two little zeros. Not enough to do much of anything and believe me there’s a lot to be done. The kindness of family is getting us through with a roof over our heads and food on a our plates, a car to get us from place to place and the all important connection to the internet. Yet the lack of funds is not damping our spirits or deadening our innovation. We are continuing to wake up every morning and look for good fortune under every stone.

Emmy took the first step by making herself a ginny pig for acne research, now Rick has cast his pride to the wind. Tomorrow he goes in for his initial training session as a salesperson in the housewares department at The Boston Store. Tomorrow will bring seven hours of learning how to ring up a sale, where to punch in your time card, and how to tell melamine from china. I figure he’s got this one pretty much under control. My guess is that within a fortnight he‘ll have the blue hairs and mall-walkers of Madison’s Eastside lining up for his advise on which sheets have the highest thread count and whether to go for 100% cotton or percale. Right now, the position is purely part-time and a means to give us a pinch of spending money and a modicum of self-respect. It also gets Rick out on his own in a foreign land making some of his own friends and stretching his independence. From the height of the new York design world to nine dollars an hour behind a counter at a mid-range department store, how low would you go?

Remember, a little is always better than nothing at all. If you have to start out small it’s okay. The road up means starting at the bottom and chugging on up, anyway you can.

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