Labor Day

by francine Hardaway on September 7, 2009

I've read and seen some pretty grim posts about Labor Day this year; in fact, this is the first year I've seen Labor Day celebrations be so negative. Here's B.L. Ochman writing about her friend who is out of a job, Ronni Bennett writing about what it is like to be prematurely retired, and the NY Times talking about people too depressed to keep looking for a job. Most of the people in question are between 55 and 65, the older Boomers.

So there are two ways of looking at this:

1) What a bummer. The last few administrations have ruined the country, allowing Wall Street to kill off Main Street at its own expense, and robbing millions of hard-working Americans of the dream they signed on for when they joined the work force. Between the Recession/Depression and the loss of American competitiveness, we've destroyed lives and forced people into homelessness and bankruptcy. We're victimized, deprived, angry, and fearful. And we should be. Why should all these bankers be making so much money and we be forced to lower our standard of living as the middle class slides down the slippery slope to povery and hopelessnesd/

2)Well, look what has happened. Now what? Now I get to see if I can figure out a way to live from now on. I cut my burn, pay down my debt, and realize I've been ridiculous.  What am I doing with two dozen pairs of shoes and a 3500 sq. ft house? I've been given a great opportunity to rediscover my friends and family, get off my Blackberry, and figure out where my passion really resides. What do I do well? How can I be of service? And haven't I already lived most of my life anyway? I have nothing to prove to anyone, and I can have some fun now.  I've been given permission.

The first blames everything on "them," those assholes in the outside world/corporate aristocracy/government. The second blows by that (useless) thought process and takes responsibility for the future. I would rather put positive energy out into the universe than negative, and I am happy that the guy in BL Ochman's blog isn't too negative (yet).

Posted via email from Not Really Stealthmode

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Shari Weiss September 7, 2009 at 7:17 pm

Francine, I'm rereading Brian Solis' Putting the Public Back in PR, and I came upon the discussion with you, Scoble, Defren, and others — so I thought I'd look you up.

Voila, I found your Labor Day blog in which you lament the bad news all around . . . so I thought I'd put in a positive note — that actually began with a typical recessionary negative, i.e., I was “laid off” after ten years in the College of Business at San Francisco State TEACHING PR, no less.

What's positive about that? Well, I could have been very happy staying with my position; however, in the last six months I've discovered Social Media — and Brian came to my class several months ago to help orient all of us. [How sad that our marketing department had NO clue about Social Media Marketing and PR 2.0 until early this year!]

The positive: I am now focused on joining the ranks of the Social Media evangelists, and my blog SHARISAX IS OUT THERE [] chronicles my education — and that of my students. And, not only that, but I've started a small social media consulting business which was featured in the Labor Day edition of the Marin Independent Journal story on “laid off Marinites” who've become entrepreneurs.

Anyway, I'm personally excited by the future and am interested in finding more about what you and your readers currently think about PR 2.0. BTW, here's the link to the story:

Looking forward to hearing from you,
Shari Weiss

hardaway September 7, 2009 at 8:28 pm

Shari, you would be surprised how much your life will open up. I have been employed for only a short time in a 40 year career (10 years teaching college English, 1 year at Intel) and I've loved every minute of my roller coaster ride. I'm more knowledgeable, sharper, and more interested (thus interesting) than your average employee.

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