Ok, so I accept that we are in a recession. A depressing, tight-fisted little devil that was a long time coming has dumped itself right into my lap. I imagine that it looks like one of the villains, Beezle, from my favorite show when I was little, Unico. In case you are unfamiliar, this is what he looked like:
You get the idea.
So in case you weren’t sure, I’m the pink and white 1980s Unicorn…Beezle’s the mop haired Recession. Now, a little lession from 20 year old anime. Beezle conspires to be as evil as he can be, and as ruinous. He’s small, but he’s powerful. But in the end, Unico makes friends with him.
I am so NOT saying to make friends with the financial crisis. And I don’t mean to minimize it in any capacity, but guess what? I’m bad at serious. So here are some things I’m learning while in the midst of this whole mess:
1. Credit cards = so not the answer. And I know for some people, who have lost jobs or gotten sick or dug themselves a hole, this isn’t helpful. But it is for all those people who haven’t fallen in that hole yet. I’ve been socking money into savings accounts since this whole thing started going down, painfully setting aside dreams of designer boots and exotic vacations. Is it painful? Yes. Is it worth it? Ugh, ask me in 15 years (Just kidding!).
2. We don’t deserve stuff. I mean, just because I work all week at my (sometimes) thankless job and am a really good person (at times) does NOT mean I deserve a new phone (even though–I really want that new Blackberry). This is hard to wrap my arms around, but I think it’s true. I mean, I deserve shelter and food and water and (maybe) my friends, family, and boyfriend. On a good day. I think that as a country, we’ve become obsessed with the idea that material possessions are an indication of some kind of success. And maybe they are sometimes. But my phone can’t make me happy the way JW making dinner for me can. And my lack of flat screen TV doesn’t seem to be scaring off my friends. So I’m actively working on my tendency to slip into “But I deserve it…” A lot of times I deserve to have my ears boxed, but I don’t always get that.
3. I have it so much better than so many people. Pause. Say it again. It’s true, you do.
4. Recessions make me creative. I’m trying new activities, new recipes, and new ideas of comfort (no, JW, there’s nothing wrong with keeping the heat at 58 degrees) in order to see what I can live without, and what I can live with…differently. Not better or worse, just differently. So far? Good ideas include rice and beans, using my library card more and for different things (magazine, movies, CDs!) than in the past, and finagling my way into free/discounted movies. Dare I say, this makes it almost fun? Well guess what, it does.
5. I will be a smarter person because I have had this experience in my early 20s. And if I start to forget, I’ll check out my archives.
In the end, Unico always turned into a giant Unicorn and saved the day–Unico was always more powerful than Beezle, only Beezle didn’t know it. That’s how I feel.