Monday, April 28, 2008

Balance and Hope


The powers that be say they do not use the "R" word because it will generate a recession. And once they admit we are in a Recession than there will be the "D" word to worry us: Depression. So our avenue of escape from this financial mess is to think positive and spend, spend, spend.

I want to remain hopeful and I want to remain in some sort of financial balance. At the moment those two concepts seem to be in direct opposition to each other. I feel a bit like a frog perched on a lily pad in a turbulent pond.

A year ago April 7th I began a home improvement project of adding 336 sf to my house. It is a studio/gallery which will hopefully at some time in the near future generate income without having to travel to as many art fairs. The state is even supporting this endeavor obliquely by beginning a art studio tour loop for tourism through this part of the state. So I am rather stuck in having to continue to do some spending over and above food and gas. I am sure my local economy loves it, because I cannot afford to run to the big city every time I need to purchase tile, or grout, or lumber for the deck, paving stones for the walkway, etc. I admit to doing this all a lot slower than the original schedule, however. I guess that supports those words of "economic slow down" Bush likes to use.

I guess this is all why Obama's message of hope resonates with me so much. I don't care if it is irrational but I need hope. We all need some hope. There are too many dashers of hope out there: McCain because he thinks we ought to pick ourselves up by the bootstraps, Bush because he refuses to admit we are in the deep shit here, Hillary that wants to continue to play the same old dirty trick politics I have come to hate and darken my dream of hope.

How about we all go to a hilltop and meditate on achieving balance in our lives? And actually I do find some of what is happening economically hopeful. I am shopping local far more and finding that I enjoy that even when it costs me a bit more. If I have problems with the mix of paint or a broken tile they are far more likely to make it right for me than Lowe's. And I can feel good about helping my local economy.

I had picked this image of a frog on a lily pad this morning. It reminded me of how tricky it must be to balance on a small pad in the middle of a pond especially if their is turbulence. But it also reminded me that global economy or no it is the health of my little pond that matters. Shop local but shop I suppose is the message. And match your outgo to your income. Balance. And Hope. Let us not forget hope. It gets us through the worst of times.