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Self-indulgence and Bicycles

Copenhagen Bicycle, undated

Forgive my absence for the past few days. I was busy feeling sorry for myself. It has nothing to do with my photography, rather my never ending search for full time employment. Since 2008 (when I was first laid off), my work history has been a series of hires and lay-offs, separated by long, long periods of uncompensated unemployment. So, the day before yesterday I found that I had not been rehired by a previous employer. They apparently hired someone they could pay less, although at this point I would take less. But I wasn’t given the option.

My mental space yesterday was predictably gloomy. I should have been capturing images of dark places. Instead I did nothing.

It bothers me a lot that there is a whole generation of widowed, divorced or single women in their 50s and 60s who are currently unemployed. That is a lot of experience and intelligence being lost to our society. Besides looking in the mirror and seeing one of them each morning, I’ve met these ladies at farmer’s markets selling crafts, at gyms keeping healthy, in knitting groups keeping their brains quick and online sharing family triumphs and woes. Maybe we’re not destined to return to corporate America. Maybe our influence will be face-to-face, one-on-one—a different kind of validation than the one we expected to achieve. I have to get used to the idea.

Maybe we’ll all get together and ride bikes across America. That would be fun, wouldn’t it? Anyone game?

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