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Tue Jan 14, 2014, 11:58 AM

Just another ordinary day in paradise.

I woke up this morning, to the sound of rain falling outside my window. Soft tapping on the metal roof of my family's home here in Northern Maine. At first it was nice, the gentle, rhythmic sound of the rain. Then I abruptly realized that it meant the road would be even worse than it had been yesterday - which was already very icy. You see, the driveway is on a slight incline that is covered with about three inches of ice. Despite buying fifty pounds of ice melt and tripping all over the place trying to create walking space, I still have to wear these "grippers" (rubber shoes with spikes in them that go over your shoes) to get up and down the driveway. If I tried to park in it, I'd never get out, so walking to the end of the driveway is necessary any time I want to go somewhere - as my car is parked in a very slight spot just off the side of the road.

As I have on many days, I'll choose my steps with great caution to make my way to my car. Then, even more carefully, I'll attempt to drive down the three miles of the road I live on to reach the highway. Last Saturday I went off the road four times just making the attempt (I had gone maybe a mile, at five MPH) and had to call in to work - the Boss wasn't happy, but there was nothing I could do. Now provided nothing happens and that I can somehow make it to the main roads, I should be able to make it the thirty miles to work. I wonder some times though, how people without snow tires fare. I had to borrow 450 dollars for mine, and I still can barely make it anywhere.

In any event, I'll eventually (hopefully) make it to work at a semi-local hotel. The knowledge that I have bills that are overdue will be dragging my heels, the knowledge that I'm making eight dollars an hour will be filling my head with thoughts of disaster... what if the car breaks down? What if I get sick? No health insurance, can't afford even the day off from work I was forced to take on Saturday. What if I get fired? My boss is increasingly angry and stressed lately - and does not hesitate to yell and threaten. It is very easy to make a mistake when you're working with computer systems, answering phones, and generally trying to manage the front desk of a hotel without breaking anything.

When I woke this morning, there were tears in my eyes, as there are on most mornings - I don't know if it's a sleep thing, or just the knowledge of another ordinary day that makes me sad. Perhaps the feelings and thoughts I normally shove down somewhere dark inside of me emerge at night and are slow to leave in the morning as I groan my way downstairs to make coffee.

The place that holds my car loan is calling every day - I'm a month behind. I have to decide this Friday if I want to beg my parents for help, or take my computer back to the rental place, as I can't afford both payments. If I miss another day of work, poor road conditions or not, I suspect that I'll be let go, which will make the issue moot as I'll lose both.

There is an overwhelming feeling of depression and anxiety that slows my steps even more than the caution of (literally) walking on ice. While I'm giving it everything I've got to shrug off my sadness, just getting ready for work feels like climbing Mt Everest.

I share all of this here because I wonder how many of us feel the same way. There has to be something better, a better way to live, something to inspire hope, ambition, motivation.

Earlier in my youth I sought a way out of this working class misery, thinking perhaps to become a monk or some such thing, as I'm given to quiet reflection and love to read. What stopped me is the fact that I'm agnostic, or perhaps "gnostic" is the proper description. I believe in what my senses tell me, and to some extent, in what I feel inside. I have long been convinced that there is too much misery in this world for me to believe in a higher power.

I feel as if I'm hanging from the edge of a cliff, my hands clinging to a rock wall so hard they bleed - sooner or later, I fear I'm going to slip and lose whatever measure of sanity and hope remains to me.

Forgive my venting, I'm sure many of you have lives that suck worse. There are people who are starving, who are without homes, without warmth, without love in their lives. I have a wonderful family and a place to live, for now at least, I'm safe in the knowledge that my parents will keep food on the table. At twenty-nine years of age though, I feel that I shouldn't have to rely on them for help. In a society that tends to judge a man by the strength of his ambition, by his work ethic, by his ability to take care of at least himself, I often feel a miserable failure.

There are things to be grateful for, all around me, but somehow, this does not lift the depression that seems to follow me around like a dark cloud.

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Arrow 43 replies Author Time Post
Reply Just another ordinary day in paradise. (Original post)
davidthegnome Jan 2014 OP
El_Johns Jan 2014 #1
Prophet 451 Jan 2014 #2
polichick Jan 2014 #3
PotatoChip Jan 2014 #8
davidthegnome Jan 2014 #11
PassingFair Jan 2014 #14
polichick Jan 2014 #17
japple Jan 2014 #4
davidthegnome Jan 2014 #6
japple Jan 2014 #7
davidthegnome Jan 2014 #10
DebJ Jan 2014 #26
davidthegnome Jan 2014 #31
ohheckyeah Jan 2014 #36
LukeFL Jan 2014 #34
G_j Jan 2014 #5
marions ghost Jan 2014 #30
progressoid Jan 2014 #9
zeemike Jan 2014 #12
EC Jan 2014 #13
blur256 Jan 2014 #15
davidthegnome Jan 2014 #18
davidthegnome Jan 2014 #24
blur256 Jan 2014 #25
Stargazer99 Jan 2014 #16
shireen Jan 2014 #38
freedom fighter jh Jan 2014 #19
oldandhappy Jan 2014 #20
freshwest Jan 2014 #21
japple Jan 2014 #22
roody Jan 2014 #23
DebJ Jan 2014 #27
davidthegnome Jan 2014 #32
DebJ Jan 2014 #43
grasswire Jan 2014 #28
davidthegnome Jan 2014 #33
grasswire Jan 2014 #39
erronis Jan 2014 #41
LukeFL Jan 2014 #35
sinkingfeeling Jan 2014 #29
Demo_Chris Jan 2014 #37
Paper Roses Jan 2014 #40
hopemountain Jan 2014 #42

Response to davidthegnome (Original post)

Tue Jan 14, 2014, 12:09 PM

1. K&R

 

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Response to davidthegnome (Original post)

Tue Jan 14, 2014, 12:24 PM

2. Yeah

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Response to davidthegnome (Original post)

Tue Jan 14, 2014, 12:35 PM

3. Thank you for sharing...

I feel as if this is what's happening all over the country. People are under pressure and there's a sense that nothing is secure. Nothing works. Our country doesn't make sense anymore. Even those agencies meant to help are no longer viable. Some people turn those feelings inward (anxiety, depression) and some turn them outward (anger, violence) - but imo the whole country is about to boil over.

Be kind to yourself. Know that your own essence or spirit is powerful (few of us ever really tap into our intuitive wisdom and strength). Everyone needs help sometimes, whether it's financial or emotional - don't hesitate to ask your friends and family. Be grateful for the simple things (as you already are) until times change. Fifty years from now, historians and anthropologists will look at this time as one of great transformation - it's just that we don't yet see what we're transforming into.

k&r

edit: typo

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Response to polichick (Reply #3)

Tue Jan 14, 2014, 01:21 PM

8. +1

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Response to polichick (Reply #3)

Tue Jan 14, 2014, 02:10 PM

11. I hope I have enough strength...

to keep turning those feelings inward, instead of unleashing them in anger. I've never been a violent or angry person - I'm normally the quiet, reserved type - and I have this insatiable need to make people like me. Insecure, perhaps, but generally a nice enough guy. There are a few people I'd love to rage at, but I manage to keep those feelings bottled up, as I do need my job.

Your words are wise, it's good advise to be kind to yourself. I'm struggling with that right now because I have this anger and depression inside that I need to keep bottled up in order to function - I'm ashamed of them, as I feel I should be more grateful, more positive, more determined. Being able to talk about it here is one of the few things keeping me sane right now.

Fifty years from now, perhaps we will have a drink and laugh about how miserable things once were. Right now though, too many of us are living that misery, and barely holding on.

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Response to davidthegnome (Reply #11)

Tue Jan 14, 2014, 02:29 PM

14. Haven't you heard? The economy has RECOVERED!!!1



We are being ground down to grist.

Try to enjoy your job....it is the best revenge.
Dig, dig, dig for the happiness hidden in ordinary moments.

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Response to davidthegnome (Reply #11)


Response to davidthegnome (Original post)

Tue Jan 14, 2014, 12:35 PM

4. I wish I had some answers for you or some good advice. Is there any way

Last edited Tue Jan 14, 2014, 01:12 PM - Edit history (1)

that your boss might let you stay at the hotel when the roads are hazardous to ensure that you would be at work the next day? Or is that even anything that you would consider? Please seek counseling for depression. There is help for those who cannot afford it. Call your county department of social services and ask about mental health counseling. When things look dark, it's sometimes hard to see options for improving your life. (Edit to add: I know this from first-hand experience.)

I hope that just writing about your situation made you feel somewhat better. That is what DUers are here for--to support one another and to help if we can. Sending good energies in your direction and hoping that your situation will improve soon. Keep on writing, my friend. You do it well.

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Response to japple (Reply #4)

Tue Jan 14, 2014, 01:11 PM

6. There is limited help available.

On nights when the road conditions are terrible, I could possibly stay at the hotel, there is an employee discount... but I'd have to skip a car payment. Your suggestion is a good one, just really hard to afford.

A couple years ago I was in therapy - without insurance though, you have to pay out of pocket. The psychiatrist charged 350 dollars for a 45 minute session (up front), and had a waiting list of at least a couple months, being the only one in the area, as far as I know. There was a social worker, a nice guy, who charged about 40 dollars per weekly session, but I had to stop that as well as it became unaffordable.

I've applied for health insurance through our state program several times and been rejected - the letters generally informed me that I was not disabled, not poor enough, my household income was too high. Kind of like, "When your life sucks even more, apply again, maybe then we can do something." A little over 150 dollars a week pays for the car, this computer (my only real social outlet) and the gas to get to work. I might have to do without the computer soon - it's frustrating.

A positive perspective, a grateful attitude, a tendency towards optimism - my Father has all of these things and it is often his encouragement that keeps me going. Yet even he is struggling right now with payday loans taken out a year ago to help his children pay for college. He won't admit it, but he gave far more than he could and had to push his retirement back, when he has worked so hard, for so long already.

I don't want to ask my parents for more help than they already give, they provide me with a place to live, and food - and that is far more than many have. Perhaps the only real solution is to double my search effort for a second job, then I might be too busy to give any time or attention to my circumstances.

Writing and venting here at DU - and the advice and empathy of great people like yourself, does help to redeem my faith in humanity.

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Response to davidthegnome (Reply #6)

Tue Jan 14, 2014, 01:18 PM

7. Have you applied for insurance through the Affordable Care Act? I don't know much

about it, but there was a booth at Walmart last week with navigation assistance.

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Response to japple (Reply #7)

Tue Jan 14, 2014, 01:42 PM

10. I have.

All of the plans are unaffordable for me - I called in to ask about subsidies, and the nice lady on the phone told me that I made too little income for Obamacare, or it's subsidies to apply. There was something called a catastrophic plan, or something like that, but that would have been too much for me to pay out of pocket. Her suggestion was to apply for Mainecare, which have, and will probably do again some time in the near future. The problem is that our Republican Governor rejected the Medicaid expansion, and is in the process of cutting the hell out of our State insurance program. Something like eighteen thousand people were just cut, and I expect there will be more cuts in the months to come.

There's also a matter of thousands of dollars in debt in past medical expenses, as well as student loan debt - when someone from a random collection agency called me yesterday to demand a payment of 200 dollars a month, I asked if he'd let me borrow his car then, so I could get to work to pay it - as that payment would make me unable to afford the car I have now. He laughed, before threatening to garnish my wages, maybe take me to court. He told me that he was going out on a limb even making that offer. I told him, "Yes, thank you Sir. Burn in hell very much. Goodbye.", then I hung up. That one will probably come back to bite me... it's not that I dislike the fellow, everyone needs a job - but the companies that employ him are the scum of the earth, kind of like my own big Boss, who owns a couple hotels and frequently bitches that all of his employees have their hand out. I want to tell him that their hands are out because he only pays the eight dollars an hour without benefits... but I wisely keep my mouth shut, and keep my job... for now.

On the one hand, I know that if I snap I'll lose my job and what little I have right now... on the other hand, it is very depressing to be talked down to by a man who just took a very expensive vacation, then came back to inform the wait staff at the Hotel Restaurant that their vacation time no longer existed - he just couldn't afford it. He was offering it out of the goodness of his heart, he said, no other restaurants offer that up here. I wonder if it occurs to him that the heating system is so messed up that on a cold night, it's forty degrees in the kitchen, and even colder in the dining room...

On the off chance that he should ever visit DU and read this (doubtful, as he is, of course, a staunch republican...): Fuck you, Sir.

I almost never get angry, I'm almost never really mean to people... I have always kept my temper on a tight leash. The leash is slipping though, it may be that I'll have a nervous break-down and, disregarding my own circumstances, tell my boss what I really think of him. It would be awesome, I'd get fired, and be even poorer, but... if any man ever deserved telling off more, I do not know him.

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Response to davidthegnome (Reply #10)

Wed Jan 15, 2014, 02:26 AM

26. I have always been told that if you send even like $5 a month on a debt

there's not much a collection agency can really do. It shows you are trying, good faith or something like that.
Just in case that might make them let up on you and pick on someone else.

I think there is a good reason that economically rough times are called 'depressions'.

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Response to DebJ (Reply #26)

Wed Jan 15, 2014, 12:50 PM

31. That will probably be my solution, in the end.

For now, they're still in the process of trying to get me to make high payments that I can't afford. Eventually I think they'll either settle for a small monthly amount, or take me to court... or perhaps garnish my wages. If they do garnish my wages, quitting my job is going to become extremely tempting.

I don't really have extra money, but often, when I go to the local grocery store or gas station (usually for my parents)... I will see a donation box. It might be for orphaned cats, for children struggling with disease, for a local man to have a surgical operation, toys for tots... for any number of things. Every time I see one, I put something in it. Some times it's a dollar, some times it's a five. Some times it's just whatever few quarters I have left of my paycheck after paying bills. But I always give something... because I figure, they can use it more than I can, and maybe there is such a thing as karma, maybe if I give enough, one day, something will come back to me. And if not... well, then at least I have done something to help those who are struggling, be they human or animal.

Or maybe it's irresponsible idealism (if I make these donations with money I don't have and, on occasion, have to ask my parents for gas money) as I'm sure some would say - but regardless, I intend to continue this practice until they nail shut my coffin.

Depressions... you know, I think that's an excellent point. Much as some insist that the economy has recovered... it's still basically a depression for most of us.

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Response to davidthegnome (Reply #10)

Wed Jan 15, 2014, 02:51 PM

36. I don't have any real advice on getting a better job,

but I can speak to the anger and depression. I went through a serious depression and for me it was suppressed anger. Once I learned how to express it the depression lifted. Find a safe place to express your anger, even if it's just a walk in the woods and yelling at a tree. My safe place was the desert. I kicked a lot of innocent rocks.

I wish you the best. There was a time when I could have hooked you up with a work at home job, but even those jobs are getting harder to find.

By-the-way, the fact that there are people worse off doesn't make your situation any better. Quit judging yourself so harshly - you don't have to be perfect to be a good person. You feel what you feel and you can't make yourself feel more grateful, or whatever it is you think you should feel.

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Response to davidthegnome (Reply #6)

Wed Jan 15, 2014, 02:35 PM

34. Have you considered instead of

Getting a second job going to school for a different career? A technical career where you can make more money in the future?

I mean, you are still very young- anything is possible. Give yourself short term goals when it comes to school. I know school is not for everyone but if having a different job/ career will make you feel better because it will increase the prospect of you earning more, you should not only give it try- you should go for it.

There are different technical professions that do not require a 4 year degree- a one and half year is sometimes all you need to make real changes to your life.

You work at a hotel, have you tried researching for culinary schools?
I know someone who is graduating from a two year culinary school program and already has job offers. The pay will also be excellent.

Anything you can do to improve your way if life? I know it's difficult ( trust me, I am going through my own Financial and prrsonal problems) but we must continue to live. It's this life- there won't be another one.

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Response to davidthegnome (Original post)

Tue Jan 14, 2014, 12:42 PM

5. this is why poverty is "grinding"

the stress of a thousand worries. Could those assholes in DC even contemplate when someone can't even afford a box of band-aids, or a pair of new socks?

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Response to G_j (Reply #5)

Wed Jan 15, 2014, 10:55 AM

30. No, they have no understanding

of living near the edge. That's the problem. If you have not got a lot of money, you have no representation.

To davidthegnome: It is not your fault -- and you are not alone. Can you find others in your situation and network?

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Response to davidthegnome (Original post)

Tue Jan 14, 2014, 01:35 PM

9. ...



I don't have any easy answers but I know the feeling all too well ...

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Response to davidthegnome (Original post)

Tue Jan 14, 2014, 02:24 PM

12. I feel your story is all to common.

And it is a national shame that at 29 you are barely getting by when you should be approaching your most productive years.

But yes there is a better way, but we have a long hard struggle to get there from here...like your trip to work...and even a harder struggle to even voice a plan to do so.

I am old so it don't matter for me, but for you young people it really sucks.

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Response to davidthegnome (Original post)

Tue Jan 14, 2014, 02:26 PM

13. Hope something changes for you soon.

Most of my life has been like this. Just a vicious circle. Not being able to pay the bills and then the companies adding late fees and penelties just making it harder to pay didn't help. This country is awful for the working poor. Things did get better for me - of course I had to wait for Survivor social security benefits and Obamacare did help me.

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Response to davidthegnome (Original post)

Tue Jan 14, 2014, 02:36 PM

15. You are definitely not alone.

I'm right there with you as well as millions of other Americans barely getting by. I have a master's degree, but at the moment I am working two jobs just to be able to pay rent and pay barely enough on my utilities so they don't get shut off (which has happened to me several times in the past). I was fortunate enough to have a relative give me money to pay off some debt a few months ago, which was great. But what he doesn't understand, and what most of the people in my family don't understand is the reality of what people like myself and you and a ton of other people face. That is a band-aid for a gaping wound. The reality is that the way this country works is that poor people just keep getting poorer. Money to fix debt is great, but that doesn't help me pay my everyday bills. I just took out another payday loan so that my electric wouldn't be turned off. I will have to pay that back from my next paycheck plus an extra $100 because the interest is so high. And then I will have to turn back around and take out another loan from them so I can pay the other half of my rent that I couldn't pay my landlord on time this month. It's a vicious cycle. Poor people just keep getting poorer trying to live a shitty life.

And then family asks why you don't call or why you are so closed off. It's because you get depressed when you can't do "normal" things like go to the movies every so once in awhile or go out to dinner. What kind of life is it when you can't afford to live? The stress and pressure of just keeping a roof over your head becomes so high, it makes it impossible to have normal relationships with people because you can't see how other people can't see how hard it is for you to live. Being poor can make a person super lonely, which makes everything else worse.

The harsh reality is that there seem to be fewer and fewer jobs that pay a decent wage. That's what really needs to change. People need to be paid at least enough to live on if they are willing to work. End of story. I don't care what your job is, if you are doing something that is considered a job, you should be paid enough to do it. I don't care if you are a janitor, a server, a liquor store cashier or you work at Walmart. These jobs benefit someone somewhere, so why should you work at that job and not get paid to live a decent life like the people you help?

And I read your post about the heat not working at your job... The same thing happened to me. During the polar vortex no less. Our heat went out at the store I work at for about a week. I worked every single one of those days with multiple layers on freezing because they didn't seem to care that it was cold out. The only reason they got the heater fixed was because one of those days my boss had to work for a bit and he didn't like it. Go figure. No one cares about the little people anymore. And what really pisses me off is that he made his money by lying about his academic background to get a great sales job where he made ridiculous commission (he said he graduated from a great school when really he flunked out after 3 semesters). And here I am, working for $9 an hour wasting my hard earned degrees (for which I am going to have to pay back a ton of money that I don't have because I can't a job that I'm supposed to get with my expensive degree).

So sorry, I went on a rant as well, but you, myself and everyone else in this position has a right to rant. This is our LIVES. Every single person who is willing to work but is still living in poverty has a right to rant. And we SHOULD RANT. Rant to everyone who has never experienced this. Rant to our government that is allowing this to happen. Rant and rant and rant until every single one of us has been heard and things are changed. People should not to live in fear for their lives because they are poor.

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Response to blur256 (Reply #15)

Tue Jan 14, 2014, 02:48 PM

18. With a masters degree...

Some times I think to myself that if I finish my degree, perhaps life will get better, as I'll be able to get a better job. I can't imagine going through all that school, borrowing so much money, and then getting screwed in the end when there are no jobs that will pay you enough to live.

Hopefully when I get home tonight, I'll have more time to devote to the response your post deserves. It's shitty... and you're right, we should rant, until the powers that be start paying attention. For now though, I'd better get to work, the roads are lousy and I'll have to drive slow.

If nothing else happens, I'll be back tonight some time. Thank you all for the encouragement, for the words of kindness and wisdom - for the empathy. DU often reminds me that there truly are people out there who give a damn, that it's worth it to keep up the fight.

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Response to blur256 (Reply #15)

Wed Jan 15, 2014, 12:47 AM

24. This is part of the reason I love reading so much.

As a small boy, there were various reasons that I wanted to escape my circumstances (yeah, even then) and I often did so at the local library. My problems all seemed small in comparison to, say, Frodo's quest to destroy the one ring, or Robinson Crusoe's mighty effort to survive and eventually escape his deserted island. Stories of mythical and/or legendary and fantastical heroes have always been my favorites, perhaps because they have the power to do what I can only dream of. Yeah, I'm something of a nerd.

Reality IS harsh - and it is especially so when you are poor and working. You're right about normal relationships becoming difficult, about the overwhelming stress... not being able to do those "normal" things people do. A few weeks ago, I had my first date in several months - and being old fashioned in some regards, I insisted on paying for everything she would let me pay for. The day after that date - I realized that, damn, I'm too poor to date. I had to skip a car payment for a week. I have to manage my bills weekly, as I get paid weekly and the money runs really fast.

Every day I am in service to those who have far more money than me. Some times I look at them and wonder what life is like when you have a career you can take pride in, when you have true hope and purpose - when you can see a future that does not look grim. I envy them. My parents have good careers, college educations, nice cars and a nice home. They fall under average working middle class. I am deeply grateful to them, but some times I catch myself envying them, too.

Payday loans... god those things are awful. They can help you get out of a bind, but they will screw you in the end. Screw you real bad. My Father makes pretty decent money, but after a couple of payday loans, he nearly went under himself. It's just a matter of living paycheck to paycheck, trying to balance and juggle so many things...

When I was a child, I hated being a child. I couldn't wait to grow up, so that people would not bully me anymore for being shy, quiet, awkward - and a little chubby. Now that I am more or less an adult... I realize that the bullying not only continues, but becomes even worse, it is simply somewhat more subtle. I was reminded of this tonight when my Boss yelled at me, for managing to knock the phone off the desk (I was reaching for a pen with the phone in my hand, and the cord is small, so... whoops) and ranted, "Are you a klutz? Do you break everything you touch?" I didn't know if the boss was joking or not, so I shrugged and said, "Yeah, I guess I'm clumsy."

Little things, but eventually they add up until I feel like screaming - and I actually do scream, some times, in the car, with the music up. It's somewhat therapeutic.

I'm lonely, but I love my family. I'm poor, but I'm surviving. I hate my job - but I do have a job. So many others live in circumstances far worse than my own, that I have to remind myself frequently that it could always be worse. Perhaps it helps keep me going. There are days when I really despise myself for complaining too much. Still, if I don't occasionally open that little bottle of emotions and let something out, I'll end up a ranting madman (more so than I am already).

I can picture myself wandering the streets naked, an algebra book in my hand instead of the bible, as I speak to people in numbers to warn them of the end times. Ugh. I don't know if that made any sense.

I'm tired, this working poor shit really takes a lot out of you. My feet hurt, I'm hungry, frustrated and depressed... and I have to go do this crap all over again tomorrow.

I don't even dream of winning the lottery anymore. I figure if I always expect the worst, my surprises will be pleasant.

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Response to davidthegnome (Reply #24)

Wed Jan 15, 2014, 01:38 AM

25. We have a lot in common

it sounds like. I'm getting ready to go to bed (worked two jobs again today and I am worn out), but I will reply tomorrow to help explain. Hang in there!

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Response to davidthegnome (Original post)

Tue Jan 14, 2014, 02:45 PM

16. You put it quite well, more people than you are probably aware

Are feeling the same way you are. I keep wondering when enough people get fed-up with our "superiors" and start putting in decent democrats in EVERY position to ensure laws are finally making sense and enforced. The well-to-do have become arrogant, morally repugnant. They are destroying the vary nation that has allowed them to prosper. Personally, I am sick of the well-to-do and corporations (300,000 people cannot drink their water in this country because they dumped chemicals in drinking water and had no federal inspection for years (keep voting Republican stupids as they feel business should be unfettered) and those that cater to them. I no longer salute the flag after the system let my daughter die from lack of medical care. Why should I honor a country that screws the little man while letting the rich and powerful pull off things you and I would be put in the slammer for. Compassionate conservatives, what a laugh, compassionate as a coiled rattlesnake! The French had a solution hundreds of years ago, even monarchy bit the dust.

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Response to Stargazer99 (Reply #16)

Wed Jan 15, 2014, 03:54 PM

38. i'm so sorry to hear about your daughter

What you, the OP and others have to bear is so wrong. It's wrong. You all deserve far better.


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Response to davidthegnome (Original post)

Tue Jan 14, 2014, 03:07 PM

19. You don't have to believe in God to seek spiritual help.

Check out iamhome.org and click on "Sangha Directory" to find meditation groups. They have a number of places in Maine. Don't know where you are or whether there is one close to you, and clearly you won't be traveling more than necessary until some of the ice is gone, but anyway I hope this helps.

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Response to davidthegnome (Original post)

Tue Jan 14, 2014, 05:39 PM

20. I am sorry.

Our systems do not work. I am sorry for your frustration and reality. And I am glad you have your family. Have no answers or wisdom. Just sending hugs and best wishes and lots and lots of hope. I am working get out the vote in my precinct. If we can replace our local rep and others can replace their local reps and we can take back the House of Not representing me, maybe we can raise the minimum wage. But that does not help you now.

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Response to davidthegnome (Original post)


Response to davidthegnome (Original post)

Tue Jan 14, 2014, 08:28 PM

22. Kicking for the evening crowd.

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Response to davidthegnome (Original post)

Tue Jan 14, 2014, 10:49 PM

23. You are young and blessed to have family

to take care of you. You have many years ahead to create the life you want.

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Response to davidthegnome (Original post)

Wed Jan 15, 2014, 02:33 AM

27. Do any of your siblings have residence somewhere

in an area where employment opportunities might be better or improving, and
could you crash with them awhile and pursue that?

From your description, it sounds like you are in a very rural area. Reminded me
of my parent's retirement place in WV. The 'good' jobs there were at the
chicken-plucking/processing plant for like 25 cents an hour above minimum wage.
That's how it was when they retired there 25 years ago. That's how it is today,
and it's never going to get better up there.

I'd like to slap your boss in the face. I worked for quite a number of jerks over my
40 years of working life. About one in three were hideous like this guy, but it seems
most of those were coming one after another in the later years. In the earlier years,
employees were mostly treated with respect (and pay and benefits)...and certainly
so to their faces. I was a boss with a crew of up to 50 people working for me.
They worked their tails off for me because they knew I genuinely respected and
cared for them as individuals. It's not rocket science....it's just being a decent
person and treating people as you'd want to be treated. So that gave me even
less respect for the jerks. No matter how crappy MY current boss might have been,
that only made me MORE determined to insure I never rolled the crap downhill...
I wouldn't lower myself to their behaviors. I hate jerks.

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Response to DebJ (Reply #27)

Wed Jan 15, 2014, 01:01 PM

32. In addition to owning the hotels..

my boss is what they might call a local slum lord. He owns a few apartment buildings and rents out apartments. Some times the tenants are late with their rent... one day I heard him shouting on the phone (his office is right behind the hotel front desk, which makes things awkward when he's there) "Get the money. DO NOT FUCK WITH ME!". Followed by the sound of the phone being angrily slammed down.

Fortunately, he's usually only around for a few days a month, as he lives primarily in a big house somewhere downstate. He comes, "Just long enough to make everyone miserable" as a co-worker put it one day.

My siblings all live up here too. One is an English teacher in a small town, one is a college student in her fifth (and hopefully final) year of school. One (who lives here with me and mom and dad) manages a restaurant and also works for a semi-local (45 miles away or so) TV station. They are all beautiful, hard working women whom it is my pleasure and honor to know. I'd do absolutely anything for them - as I'm sure they would for me, but they are all struggling with their own financial issues.

I hate jerks, too - especially the rich sort, who can afford to be kind and generous, and simply choose not to be. I don't think slapping my boss would have any effect really, it would be kind of like punching a rock wall. You'd only hurt your hand.




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Response to davidthegnome (Reply #32)

Thu Jan 16, 2014, 12:01 AM

43. Karma will give the slap he needs one day.

for me to imagine slapping him just made ME feel better to say..........

I wish my family had stayed close. Two of my three sisters moved so far away
many many years ago, so far I've only seen them a few days every so many years..like
maybe every 5 years for a day or two. Parents moved away too; too far to visit
except a few times a year, and soon they will be joining one of my sisters who
lives too far away to visit. So it's hard for me to suggest that maybe some other
town could offer you a better financial opportunity.

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Response to davidthegnome (Original post)

Wed Jan 15, 2014, 02:45 AM

28. David, I wish you could find or make work that is not connected...

....to your locale, because your locale is very limiting as you know. Your boss mistreats his employees precisely because there is no perceived alternative for them.

You write very well. You are smart, and thoughtful. You would be great at customer service. (And some companies employ customer service agents who work from home.)

But I sense there is something bigger out there. Something finely suited to your skills, your personality. Imagine it. Dream it. What would it be? And what would you need to make that happen?

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Response to grasswire (Reply #28)

Wed Jan 15, 2014, 02:34 PM

33. I hope you're right.

I will think on that... as I'm not really sure what it would be or what I need to make it happen. I'm about to head off to another night at work - even though my mind and body are screaming at me not to do it, to quit, throw in the towel, wait for something better to come along.... I have to keep this up, have to. I won't get anywhere by giving up, but there are days when I want to, more than I can say.

Perhaps the alternative will present itself, perhaps I will somehow find it. Maybe I'll start submitting things I've written to magazines or news papers, it could be a start. Yet my self doubt is extremely high, it's a struggle for me to share anything I've written because I am my own worst, most nasty critic.

Thank you for the encouragement. I will try to dream that dream, I will try to imagine it.

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Response to davidthegnome (Reply #33)

Wed Jan 15, 2014, 07:29 PM

39. you know, it's not easy to make a living as a writer

But a person can work at something akin to writing and then write on the side. Your job is exhausting you mentally and emotionally. I can see how it would be very hard to do something else on the side. A plan and a dream would refresh you and allow you to quit that soul-killing place.

As I have read about your love of books, I have thought about how it might be for you to be a library worker; to encourage that same kind of love of reading in others and be paid to work with books. I know your student loan is in collection, but I wonder what it would take for you to be able to go back to school.

And there are other paths, too. You could get some training and work as an editor, from home. Wouldn't have to move for that. Or maybe you could be an apprentice at a publishing house.

And when you are free from that job by implementing a short-term plan, you could develop your writing.

Diversification of revenue streams is important for a young writer. That means more than one source of income.

Stay in touch here. Report in. We are rooting for you.

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Response to grasswire (Reply #39)

Wed Jan 15, 2014, 10:07 PM

41. Thanks for helping with your words of wisdom - I may come looking someday also.

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Response to grasswire (Reply #28)

Wed Jan 15, 2014, 02:46 PM

35. Love your response

Very inspiring. Similar to mine above. David seems to posses several skills. He must not stop to seek his full potential. Move to a different city David!

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Response to davidthegnome (Original post)

Wed Jan 15, 2014, 10:41 AM

29. Thanks for sharing. I wish I had words of wisdom to offer, but I don't.

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Response to davidthegnome (Original post)

Wed Jan 15, 2014, 02:58 PM

37. rec

 

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Response to davidthegnome (Original post)

Wed Jan 15, 2014, 07:30 PM

40. I wish you the best, you are part of a huge group.

We are all trying to keep our heads above water. Your youth is as asset, you will rebound, I'm sure. I tell myself to just keep moving on and something will break. Maybe, maybe not, but we all have to hope things will get better.
Your post is a story for all of us to absorb. Not a vent. No need to apologize.

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Response to davidthegnome (Original post)

Wed Jan 15, 2014, 11:42 PM

42. yes, davidthegnome, know this -

you have many gifts - from what i gather and understand from your writing - and these gifts can serve you as well as the need in the world for you to share them.

what is going on in our country and in the world is terrible for those who are suffering - and suffering accomplishes for far too many - one thing - it dashes the spirit - and tries to extinguish hope and dreams and the good in humanity. there is a bigger picture and this is all the more reason to fight it with whatever one has to fight a good fight.

thank you for writing. i know my daughter is walking in your shoes (looming student debt, low paying job, etc). your story reminds me how much she is still suffering from the "recession". it is hard to be grateful for a shitty job, a roof over your head and food in your belly when it seems there is no hope.

stand in your truth. keep a strong heart. someone mentioned meditation and i encourage you to try it - indeed, awareness of one's awareness is a path to true freedom.

i don't know when things will turn better for you - but as a 61 year old woman who has been through everything (the whole catastrophe) - things do get better.

keep writing.


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