Thursday, September 18, 2008

Zero Credit and No Money Down? Approved!!

As I sit in my cubicle watching Rome crumble before me, I can’t help but feel like the captain of the Titanic. Amidst the current chaos that is the financial industry, a certain sense of calm envelops me as I watch my coworkers pray to Allah for some sort of reprieve. My peers justifiably have concerns for their future employment as rumors of our potential takeover / sell off spread like wild fire. All these unfounded rumors only fuel anxieties but folks enjoy torturing themselves and they are buying into everything they hear. By noon, we had been acquired by Goldman Sachs and the lights were turned out due to lack of capital. By close of business day, we had stopped trading and Bank of America was in the forefront of our takeover, although Wells Fargo was also a contender. I am sure by the time I arrive tomorrow, we would have been acquired by McDonalds and big Macs would have become our primary revenue stream. Pa da pa pa pa, I’m lovin’ it!

I currently work for an investment bank whose name cannot be revealed (rhymes with semen) for I have signed many non disclosure agreements and divulging information could result in termination (not that I am privy to any insider information anyway). Given current market conditions however, my termination, along with thousands more looks eminent. We, along with the rest of the country, have been sucked into the current real estate crisis and have paid for it handily. Bear Stearns was the first investment bank to collapse and the main indicator that our economy was rapidly approaching recession. Coupled with the troubles of the MAC & MAE families (Aunt Fanny, Uncle Freddie and little baby Indy), there seems to be no end in sight.

We live in the United States of Denial (USD) and a recession will never be publicly acknowledged until we are all naked wearing barrels and using ration tickets for meals. Acknowledging economic downturn may certainly exacerbate the issue but what are the benefits of not recognizing it exists? That course of action all but guarantees the problem will compound at an annual growth rate of 3 holy shits per day. Hindsight is 20/ 20 but I am certain steps could have been taken to avert the current predicament. Common sense could have seen the housing collapse approaching a mile away. When run down brownstones are being sold to low income families for 800 thousand per unit, one can reasonably deduce that a loan or two may go defunct. Far be it from me to tell banks who to loan money to but if Tyrone Biggums enters your establishment requesting a 450 thousand dollar home loan, assume he will not be capable of paying it back (and that a crack party is all but certain). Me thinks greed played a major role in all of this. As I am currently a corporate tool however, far be it from me to throw stones for corporate America keeps my cable on. Sidebar; It is interesting that the funds used to start this company 158 years ago came directly from cotton and the slave trade. Can’t help but wonder if karma is rearing its ugly head. Sidebar complete.

So why am I calm you ask? I could be unemployed in a few weeks in a shitty job market and my savings, or lack there of certainly will not sustain my existence through any extended periods of time (as in longer than 2 weeks). Part of me honestly doesn’t give a fuck. I have been unemployed before and I did not die nor get ill (I also didn’t have much sex but that’s what internet porn is for). As a matter of fact, I only seem to require a doctor when I have health insurance so I honestly wonder if I give into my inner hypochondriac simply because I am insured. More importantly, I have long been disassociating who I am from what I have and it is amazing what you consider important once you do so. My value is not defined monetarily and does not sway contingent on my account balances. I am who I am and I will continue to do so regardless of employment. Secondly, I have no children, pets, mortgages, car payments, credit cards or school loans. If I can’t pay for it cash, I truly don’t want it! That only leaves bills and they weren’t paid on time before anyway so what’s new?

I realize we all need money to survive . . . or do we? Money is a tool whose value is realized only when spent so is it really a necessity (I know you all think I’m crazy). The value of time far supersedes the value of money so as long as I have time, I will always have a valued commodity. When I run out of time, it really won’t matter anyway because I’ll be dead. Everything else will work itself out at that point. Wait. What? We’ve been acquired by Chuck from the mail room! Hazza!

UPDATE! We have since filed for chapter 11. The party is officially over. I have taken my belongings home and I am patiently awaiting unemployment. There is no coming back from this. Allah has forsaken me.

UPDATE 2! We’ve been acquired! I have a job (maybe). Allah is on my side!

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