Sunday, January 15, 2017

Furious Meets Curious

As we continue our rush to Friday's changing of the guard the newspapers and television news reports I tend to follow have had more than a double dollop of every flavor of economic news imaginable (and some unimaginable). In my case, it's like being the original Studebaker struggling to be in with the In Crowd

Doings on Wall Street, for me, are akin to black holes and gravity. People smarter than I shall ever be are telling me it's important, though the "why" eludes me, so far. I have the same relationship with the Dow Jones Industrial Average as a squirrel or chipmunk on the side of a road has with the passing traffic: I can only imagine what might happen to me if I lose track of where I am in relation to this creation beyond my understanding. Our reach may have finally exceeded our grasp, if I've understood anything of all of this.

Meanwhile brick and mortar businesses and politicians of all persuasions stand on tip-toe as seas of red ink and operating costs rise to their noses (the latter group tend to talk out of an orifice a far piece from their nostrils) and I try to keep my ear tuned to the roar of some metal-tempered engine on some alien distant shore and then head in the other direction.  

The line between tropical typhoon and business tycoon is way more notional than actual if I'm figuring this right. It's all a play of some kind and with all respect to Lin-Manuel Miranda, it's all about the Benjamins, my brother, and devil take the hindmost. The numbers get so large in all of these discussions, your eyes glaze over or should out of self-defense.

My part in all of this? I'm one of those folks who gets by. Puts a little, very little, away out of each pay packet for savings (actually I have it done automatically, because otherwise it'd never get done at all I fear) and who has enough to pay the bills and that's about it.In my house we turn the dollar over at least once before we spend it and that's not a bad thing. I'm not sinking and I'm not qualifying for the Olympic Swim Team- you're probably in that same situation. (Quick tip: don't wear Speedos. That 'banana hammock' is NOT cool; it's creepy.)

When I come home most nights, I have mail from one or more different banks or credit card companies. Everybody wants to be my friend. One bank card offered me the chance or choice (I've forgotten which) to pick my payment date (I see your smile; yeah, I picked the same date you just thought) and another allowed me to set my own interest rate. And all I could wonder is why it's odd usury never shows up in spelling bees anymore.

I didn't ask for any of the mail. I don't need the offers or the cards and I'm smart enough, finally, to realize I don't want them. I could have dropped them off at your house on my way in to work, but I suspect you got them, too. Here's an idea: If we play our cards (credit and otherwise) right, the recycling folks will have quite a haul on collection day, right? "Another guru in the money /Another mantra in the mail."
-bill kenny

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