Looks like the government is finally figuring out what we've known for a while. We are not in an economic upswing. They haven't quite come out and admitted we're in a recession, but I figure they'll let us get used to the bad news first before they hit us with the really bad news. But how can anyone think we're in good shape when gas is well over $2 a gallon, groceries have gone up over 50 % in the last couple of months, and working people are on the verge of disaster?
My husband is in the concrete business which is very closely tied to the economy. If business is anything to go by, we've been in a recession since Sept. 11, 2001. My youngest two are feeling it the most. The second youngest is in college, having to take on increasingly heavy loans just to stay in school because his father and I are barely making ends meet. The youngest is the one it's really affecting, though. It's her senior year in high school, a time when she should be walking on air. Instead, she's having to make her own graduation invitations because we couldn't afford the $3 a piece ones from Josten's. She won't get to have a graduation tea like her friends, a graduation dinner, and I'm in serious doubt about the graduation party. If it weren't for scholarships, she wouldn't be going to college at all, but getting her to and from the out of state school she's chosen is going to be interesting.
The publishing business is feeling the pinch, too. Fewer books are being sold, editors are being choosier about what they buy and fewer new authors are being bought. Instead, publishers are recycling old books from popular authors. Personally, it really pisses me off when I buy what I think is a new book, only to find out it's a recycled old one. I've started making note of the publisher's name when that happens, not just the author. I used to be a huge Nora Roberts fan, still am I guess, but I haven't bought one of her books in two years because I can't tell which are the new ones and which are the old. I don't have time to stand in the store and read a few pages to see if I've read it before, so I pass them by. Which just reinforces the book-buying slump. Think the publishers will eventually get the message?
One of my best friends lost her brother to suicide yesterday. Why do people do that? Don't they realize that, while it might be the easy way out for them, it causes such tremendous devastation in those they leave behind that they might never recover? Many hugs and prayers for everyone touched by tragedy today.