(10 am. – promoted by ek hornbeck)
That old game, I played it in grade school. A circle of chairs, say 10 chairs, for 11 people.
And the music starts, and we all walk in a circle around the chairs. Until the music stops. Then we dash about to sit on one of the chairs and thereby claim it. We can sit! We have a chair! Ha!
There’s one person left standing. They do not get a chair and are out of the game.
This goes on, subtracting a chair each time, until there is one chair left. As the music starts, two people walk in a circle around the chair and when the music stops, well, we have a winner! Someone gets the chair! And all the rest are left out.
It’s a pretty strange game, come to think of it. Though if I recall, it was kind of fun, too.
Homelessness is rising:
Homeless advocates say families are flooding homeless shelters across the United States in numbers not seen for years, camping out in motels or staying with friends and relatives following foreclosures on tens of thousands of homes during the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression.
“It’s very depressing because we have been making progress in getting it down in the past couple of years,” Nan Roman, president of the Washington-based National Alliance to End Homelessness, said in an interview.
Demand for emergency food assistance rose in 20 of the 25 cities surveyed, the report added.
The report marks a reversal from a U.S. government survey released in July that showed the number of chronically homeless Americans declining by 15 percent to about 1.6 million people from October 1, 2006, through September 30, 2007.
“We’re seeing a new trend and I would expect the number to rise substantially,” Roman said, noting a usual lag between when a family crisis occurs and when homelessness begins.
She said the strain on budgets from the yearlong recession could make it difficult for cities to handle the increase.
For a more personal take from one of our own on what I have put in bold, read NLinStPaul’s excellent essay.
I remember at the end of the Reagan/Bush era, I remember the city streets of the Big Apple thronged with homeless folks. Most of them were very nice people, imo. Some were crazy, as the laws passed in the 70’s about involuntary commitment were changed, and left folks with mental problems to fend for themselves.
Hard times ahead. Hard times right now. Some of us have chairs, others have been left standing.
But really, that game is ultimately false. All I have to do is think of 9/11 to realize that. Folks who had it made, folks bringing in six and seven-figure salaries, with a good house in the ‘burbs and a protected family, they died in a split second, and all that so-called “security” was revealed as hollow. Others, who didn’t have much, survived unscathed.
There is no chair.
I think the danger in reading about hard times in the news (in this case, Reuters) is that the very “professionalism” of the story is misleading. Some of those very reporters are going to go through hard times as newspapers and media start laying folks off. It’s important to understand this story on a personal level as well, and that is where I think citizen journalism will be helpful.
Good fortune and misfortune in the coming years won’t be so easy to ascertain. To me, good fortune will come to those who can as buhdy says, eat the bitter.
There is no chair. But if there was a chair, perhaps a homeless person would win it. Moral: Better be nice to everyone, regardless of their station in life. You never know who has the chair.