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I would like to ask if any one out there has experienced what I will describe.
The “adventure” I am about to embark upon is a journey that is unusual in that typically the pilgrims on this voyage are alcoholics, drug addicts or mentally disturbed.
Some may claim I am mentally disturbed but as practicing painter and photographer, it is a kind and gentle way of being but I feel I am in complete control of my facilities.

In the interest of brevity, I will keep the story to simple facts and save the juicy stuff for a novel. Two years ago, my Long-term partner/girlfriend and I had what most would call the American dream. Each of us earned over six figures, received bonus’s and due to our children in school, we never felt wealthy. Perhaps we were more than comfortable.
We had a great-shared ski house in Whistler, are children were either out of college or soon to enter and doing well. Our jobs required skills and specific knowledge of technical processes. We saved some of our earnings; we had 401K retirement funds, we worked incredibly hard. I like working hard and always have.

Fast forward to unexpected death, a closing of my company, twins starting college and the bottom falling out of the real estate market followed by the stock market. I have experienced a few layoffs in my life. Prior to attending college, I learned a few trades such as Carpentry, painting, and drywall finishing. I do all very well. I assumed I would just get a few painting or carpentry jobs. This time was different. What was different?
The people in my area who usually have the homes requiring upkeep were crushed by the market crash. They were in trouble as serious as what I was wading into. There where shrinking construction opportunities with all my unemployed brethren fighting for scraps of work until the reality of the situation set in.

Ok, I have had a couple short-term consultant positions, since my long-term job evaporated, but the bills keep mounting and downsizing in a dropping market wasn’t working well. I collected unemployment for over a year with all the extensions.
I have borrowed, as much money as I was comfortable doing knowing repayment was questionable. I have explored family, friends done the networking route then government agencies as a last resort. I have hit the wall. No income, late rent, late car payments
Realizing I cannot continue like this and I now reach out to see if others have faced this before.

I am planning on getting my REI dome tent, store my belongings, bring enough supplies to paint, a couple of guitars, and my laptop and a big cooler? I don’t know what is really important. I have a cat who is my friend and partner. I don’t know what I can do with him as I love him.
My inclination is to point towards Jackson WY or Bozeman MT so at least I could ski after what? Instructing? Dishwashing? But OMG, its too cold!

I believe there is a growing group of educated, talented wonderful people who may feel discarded by our society. From watching the numbers of the unemployed grow and knowing that those who have expended benefits would or could be homeless.
This is the adventure I am embarking upon. Urban camping is not attractive. What are the real pioneers doing?
I never thought I would be in a situation like this.
When I was young, I didn’t have the bills and defaults that nag me, nor the family and friends who empathize but are so horrified by my situation (knowing it could be them with one bad stroke of luck) that I make them uncomfortable. I lived dirt poor in America as a young naive hippie renouncing my parents middle class values. I was the equivalent of a homeless person in 1970. I know how the downward spiral proceeds. I understand how appearances are so very very important to instill confidence in others.

I want to get some feed back. I need answers.
Please let me know as some times I wonder if when a normal person hits the skids due to no fault of their own, is that when one starts drinking?
I don’t want to…Are there options?

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Thanks man,
RV is an excellent option. I was lucky enough to work for a few days and came to some interesting observations about life and friendship.
I apologize for painting a self portrait as one at the edge of the abyss.
While living on the edge , because I know there is no underlying cosmic reason for any of our plight.
If Cool works " employers wouldnt hire me after a year that is their loss.
Bad credit? If I had gone into banlruptcy instead of holding on paying bills kids tuitions and mortagages w/ my savings and retirement maybe I might be a better potential employee.
Practicing Zen is a radical way to dealing with stress, however, It has allowed me to get out of bed every morning, put a smile on my face ,mentor at least three stuggling alcoholics and an addict, care for my elderly parents, keep my art /photoraphy studio (in the home ) producing,
I feel my wake is still very positive in lieu of what has transpired in my life.
Maybe I should revisit the tenor of my question as I am confused as to the best way to proceed
Of course I have good references. I was a professional of long standing.
My clients, vendors , peers are all out of work as we knew it 1 year ago.
My industry has been driven out of state.

I am sorry , but I am offended by the ripple in the gutter comment, clean myself up, maybe I can summon the luck or fortune to be hired.
I am not a wino nor a dirty unskilled blogger
Hopfully not all employers are as judgemental hip shooters as... nah'
never mind, its all good
A lot of people who wind up in desperate straits never thought they'd get there, and/or get there so fast. Things can fall apart in a big hurry. I mentioned disaster as a possibility simply because since it is a possibility, it's prudent to take all possible steps against it while you still can.

And 99.9999999999% of all potential employers ARE judgmental. That's how they hire. A personnel drone is going to give your personal information about a 90 second scan, if you're lucky. If anything like a long period of unemployment or a bad credit score leaps out at the drone, then your file goes into recycling. This will happen without any consideration of what a fine fellow you are, or how totally suited and qualified you are for the position. Usually, in today's economic climate, you never even hear back from the person who put you into the shredder. Remember--that drone is concerned first and foremost with CYA. If you have a black mark on your record, then the drone can always defend the decision not to hire you, but can be in hot water if you are hired and something goes amiss.

The sad fact is that these days, you need to provide a special reason for an employer to hire you, because you're competing with a foot-high stack of resumes. You need to discard any idea that you're going to be perceived as anything special--even as "a professional of long standing". There are currently tens of millions of professionals of long standing out there living off of unemployment benefits and food stamps. You have to view yourself as one of a pack of starving lions fighting to catch and devour a single deer.

It's not a matter of being "positive"--or of being "negative". Neither attitude changes by the tiniest bit what the REALITY is. There are millions of Americans--maybe tens of millions--who are going to die because of this economic disaster. Not just get sick, not just become homeless, but DIE. The worst, despite the false optimism from the White House, is yet to come. You won't be able to smile your way through it. Things will get MUCH worse--for you, for me, for everybody, and the ones who are best prepared will survive it. The most essential part of that preparation is being able to realistically assess the situation.
I didnt know aabout the drone and my credit rating has dropped to 650 which is higher than I expected.
Today brings relief . I have a week of work, and sold a boat that had been on the market for two years, I got a 21 day repo notice and sold it for the remainder of my boat loan. no profit, but another thing to get me closer to being mobil, lean and mean . I know what is happening to our economy. I know why.
Being prepared is my goal.
The employement heads up sounds like a death knell to career aspirations as I must have at least one black mark on my credit history. Will that affect seasonal work?
Happy Thanksgiving
I am thankful :)
Your credit is still slightly above average, which is 632.

There are laws in the works in several states which will forbid a prospective employer to check your credit history, but the catch is that those laws won't bar employers from checking it after you're hired. So they can use it as an excuse to let you go. In any case, those states are in the minority.

The more openings there are in seasonal work, the less picky employers will be. Right now, they're very very very very very very very very picky. That might change.
I thought I was getting into a less structured arena.
Seasonal is picky ?
I want full time if I can find it
Thanks for helping me
keep the faith
It's the same ol' same ol' supply and demand thing. If 4% is actually full employment, then a 10% unemployment rate means that there are 2 1/2 times as many people seeking work as there were before--for ANY kind of job--including seasonal/"casual" work. The unemployment rate in resort areas--particularly in the Western states--is more like 25%. So the concessionaires find themselves in the pleasant position of being able to cherry-pick one person out of three hundred, for a position that in previous years, they had to hire a one-armed blind guy from Guatemala to fill.

Last year, the Heavenly Valley (in Tahoe) winter job fair attracted 10,000 applicants for 300 positions, most of which were filled by returning employees. The effective result was that a prospective new employee was facing 100-1 odds. This year, there were only 180 positions available, but 15,000 people showed up. They eventually started turning people away before they could even turn in an application. Keep in mind that these are minimum-wage service positions that often involve standing out in the cold/freezing wind/slush all day.

If you want full-time work, I suggest you go to one of the places where unemployment isn't sky-high; most such places are in the Midwest. Texas in particular is doing OK. Personally, the idea of spending more than, say, six minutes in Texas fills me with existential horror, but if you have to go where the jobs are....
I am laughing because I was thinking of Texas today. I went to grad school in Texas in the early 80s.
I loved the people but missed the antiquity and ocean of New England.
I play blues guitar and was an active spectator to the music scene in Texas then, and could do it again as long as its not in Dallas, Midland, Ozona.... the plains part of northern Texas. The Hill country, Austin, San Antonio, New Braunfels, the Guadelope river (if there is any water in it now) is very sweet . Or I should say to me it is. Still have my Texas Drivers License
a long horn steer skull on my wall with a stuffed javelina!
Great idea!
This is a devine sign (LOL)
But I am serious, I was supposed to be a Texan all along. I love the Republic, I know the state, and the people who ARE the best!!!!!
Thank you Kevin, you really have made my life easier to deal with right now.
I do appreciate the suggestions.
I didnt know about the numbers at resort areas...
It makes perfect sense

Thanks again
Yeah, the Hill Country is actually kind of nice. I really like Austin, because of the setting, the music scene, and its proximity to the Texas Blonde Farm (that's where they grow all those gorgeous six-foot-tall gals in cowboy hats). I've never been to San Antone, but I hear it's an interesting cross-cultural city, sorta like Tucson or Albuquerque. The other Texas city I could stand to live in is El Intercepted Paso, because it's near a lot of interesting stuff, and it's right next to Juarez if you ever need cheap prescription drugs, hookers, or onyx chessmen.

Houston is a hot, humid, overcrowded cesspool. Dallas and Fort Worth are good places to stop for a steak--and then keep right on going. I'd like to go to Galveston and maybe Big Bend--they sound sorta interesting. The Panhandle and Amarillo---ecch. The weather tries to kill you all year round--it's brutally hot in the summer, freezing cold in the winter. Tornadoes. Flash floods. Cattle farts. Fun fun fun!

I guess Texas is big enough that it can't be completely repulsive--just the biggest cities. I kinda like East Texas too--though I wouldn't be caught dead there in the summer.

Heck, I might go there on purpose some day soon.
I think being positive can sometimes make all the difference. A miracle is a change in perception. Great pics Jeffrey. :)
What's real is what I percieve it to be. If I think the world sucks and everybody hates me then life is going to suck. If I have a negative attitude then I am likely to quit looking for a job at the first rejection. By being positive There is hope for the future and I will experience less suffering. I believe in the law of attraction I believe human thoughts can affect the physical world. You may think I am crazy, nut I think it's crazy to live a negative life creating more unneeded suffering.
I know, I am not fully aware of the new hiring practices. I know I was Being approached by recruites on a weekly basis before the market and real estate market went south here. So much has changed
I am trying to grow thicker skin
I dont think you are nuts
Pride has no place in my world except in my art

sorry if I was rude
Actually, what's real is what real, REGARDLESS of what you or I perceive it to be. If I think the sun is green, even if I really really really feel in the depths of my soul with utter conviction that it is green, that doesn't change by even an infinitesimal degree the fact that it ISN'T green. What I think has no bearing on what's real--unless you're saying that the world changes to accommodate my thoughts!!!!!!

Similarly, there are people out there who are saying that the recession is over, that everything is wonderful, and we're soon going to have an era of 100% employment, universal prosperity, and free beer. Maybe it makes them feel better to say that. And perhaps lying to themselves in that way will actually make them better able to overcome their present difficulties---but that doesn't mean that that lying CHANGES REALITY. It means that it makes them able to see possibilities that were always there, but were invisible to them.

If human thoughts could affect the physical world (as many people still believe, even in this era of science and rationality), then the home team would win every sporting event, as there are tens of thousands of people present who are hoping for the home team to hit a home run or score a touchdown, and less than a hundred who are hoping the opposite. I would also expect the hangman's rope to break or the electric chair to malfunction almost all the time, since the condemned criminal REALLY REALLY wants that to happen.

I have a friend who is meeting disaster with sunny optimism. His business is failing, and is bleeding him to death as he waits for the "inevitable trunaround". He's optimistic, all right. He will soon be optimistically broke and homeless. I'm sure that as he's sleeping in his car, he'll be singing some song from "Pollyanna". I'm sure that when he catches pneumonia, he will tell himself it's nothing, and will be coughing in time to a happy little tune. And also, I'm sure he will be trying to believe his way out of the situation. I told him a year ago that he should shut down his business, which had been unprofitable for three straight years, and avoid depleting what was left of his savings. But NOOOOOOO......he BELIEVES. Bully for him!


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