Nobody may care, but there’s been a lot floating around my mind over these last few months and even years on the direction we’re headed as a world economy, and how we need to best prepare ourselves for an inevitable bubble burst.
I’m not an economist. I’m not a philosopher, or a professor. I’m not a politician. I am indeed the product of my doomsday-focused father; I don’t always expect the worst but I’m not exactly a Pollyanna.
I also think if you’re open to the signs, it’s clear the path we’re on economically cannot last. And this new administration is going to rush the explosion.
First, here are my predictions.
These shifts are, short-term (over the next decade), going to create a massive amount of unrest, joblessness, poverty, and class division like we’ve never seen in our lifetimes. Call me Chicken Little, but when this bubble blows, I anticipate a worse situation than the Depression. We’ll have the largest generation in history (Boomers) draining the resources of all those younger than them, coupled with crippling joblessness and national debt.
Long-term, this is actually a good thing. It will mean that by the time the Boomers die out, a large generation of Millennials and Gen Z will be able to replace them with new policies, new habits, and more spending power than they’d had when the bottom fell out. It will mean we adapt to fewer people working in general, and companies forced to pay premiums in taxes for those they no longer hire. It will likely, one day, mean a guaranteed minimum wage similar to welfare being implemented at larger levels, but companies also being taxed accordingly to pay for it. It will also mean a transition to significantly less consumption, stronger environmental effects that will help combat global warming, and the resetting of an over-inflated world economy that was destined to collapse.
But there isn’t avoiding the fact that we’ve got a rough decade ahead of us.
I can’t tell you what to do, or even what the smartest ideas are out there to prepare for this burst. Because I truly believe it’s not a matter of prevention (it’s going to happen), it’s a matter of preparation. All I can do is tell you what we are personally doing, or trying to do, to help offer some ideas as you plan for your approach to life. Will you be the grasshopper, who finds himself facing a cold winter unprepared, or the ant, who stockpiled his resources for the days to come? I can’t answer that for you, and I can’t guarantee we’ll come out unscathed. I’m sure, in fact, we won’t. But to bury your head in the sand is the one action we know won’t help in the event of something bad happening.
That’s a short summary of standard things we’re doing to try and brace for the impact of a possible collapse. It doesn’t mean we’re changing our entire lifestyle or burying a bunker in our backyard, but it’s better to try and be safe than sorry, watching the patterns of history repeat themselves. What are you doing to secure yourself against the gravy train ending soon?
Working in the industry, I’m no stranger to internet targeting. I normally don’t mind. But there’s something highly invasive that happens online when you’re pregnant; a creepy little ticker that tries to normalize the horrible things happening to your body, that’s delivered to you weekly based on your e-behavior.
First, there’s the countdown.
10 Signs Your Bloody Show Is Coming!!
Welcome To Week 33! Can You Still Breathe?
Why It’s Okay That You Pee Yourself
Mucus Plugs: What’s the Dealio?
Then, there are the unwelcome Pinterest posts. What once offered pins like What To Pack for Thailand and World’s Most Magical Book Nooks has been replaced by progressively heinous images of breech babies, organ smashing, and heads literally popping out of vaginas. Look, Pinterest, I get enough of this from my nightmares and well-meaning friends asking “how scared are you?” and describing how awful C-sections are (thanks, jerks, and yes, it’s rude) to have you, my aspirational platform, turn on me, too.
Finally, my favorite is every platform trying to describe your baby’s every experience as something magical as well. I’m sorry, this junk is barbaric, and if we saw a stray animal do it, we’d call animal control.
This week, your little nugget is growing his coating of fur!
This week, your precious angel has shed his fur and is peeing at least one cup of urine a day inside your body.
This week, your sweet peanut is swallowing amniotic fluid, which includes his pee and all that fur he shed.
This week, your adorable cherub will arrive and greet you with his first bowel movement, full of fur.
I’m sorry – I’m into this baby and everything, but there is no way to convince me that’s not gross.
Pregnancy is weird enough without the constant reminders your body is turning on you and your child is basically a small Gremlin parasite. So, pregnant friends, a word to the wise, clear your cookies and don’t talk to unhelpful people. I prefer to remain blissfully ignorant of my bloody show’s 10 signs and greet this child without the foreknowledge that he’s basically eaten his own hairball. Cool?
Today, I woke up angry.
Not grumpy, but angry.
Brandon had fallen asleep on the couch and left the door unlocked all night after he came home from a gas station run. He was the first to get the wrath.
Next was the stray cat who thinks he’s invited into our house for breakfast – how did you get in here?! Scram!
Next was the Bank of America automated phone message, who refused to get me to a representative.
I don’t know why I was so angry today. Maybe it was because I had to get up for work while Brandon got the day off. Maybe it was because he fell asleep on the couch, again, and left me to sleep alone in the bedroom. Maybe it was because of hormones.
I think it really had to do with me frittering away my last true break before the baby and realizing this morning what I’d done.
We both spent the week between Christmas and New Year’s working nonstop: me putting in hours for my jobs, him putting in endless hours to finish our bathroom renovation, both of us making 5+ runs to Home Depot, cleaning the house from top to bottom, hiring a handyman to fix things around the house, organizing the office, making meals to freeze for postpartum time, getting our latest wills notarized, buying rugs for every room in the house, getting a new TV stand. Even in the moments we had available to chill, we couldn’t do it. We’d get cabin fever and venture out on another errand. I’d end up getting pinged for work. We missed the ball drop on New Year’s because we were cleaning our bathroom. Apropos end to 2016.
I am so over living under this kind of duress, and now it’s permeated into Brandon’s psyche. My once calm husband is now his own little whirling dervish of activity.
I don’t know what to do to break this cycle of panic before this child enters our lives. I pictured myself screaming at Cameron the way I did at the stray cat this morning. “Joey, get the FUCK out of my house! Next time you walk your ass in here, it’s going to the pound!” Not a healthy environment for a baby.
I’m angry, and sad, and tired, and restless. You’re supposed to feel rejuvenated after a long period of a break, right? So why are we headed into 2017 feeling more tired than we were before Christmas? And will the To Do list, once a Bucket List and now a haunting Honey Do list, ever really be Done?