Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:
A young woman who works in my building looks to be about 24 years old. Chatty person, tell you her whole life story. Went to 2-year course for some paraprofessional thing, been working here 3 years.
She has student loans, of course. She racked up credit card debt then consolidated that into another loan. Old car was junk, bought a new one, has a car loan. Constantly texting her friends about how tough it is, using her brand-new hand-held computer with unlimited data plan, all on convenient monthly payments. Every month is down to the wire. Getting married this fall, needs to save money. Moved back in with her fiancee’s parents to save on rent. Money is tight.
Okay, listen, I get it. I know about stretching the budget. I worked days while I went to law school nights. My wife and I raised three kids and that ain’t cheap. We’ve been there. Nothing wrong with that.
She’s got an appointment to get Lasik surgery. She’s tired of wearing glasses. She wants to be to see without them. Yes, it’s $1,000 or so but she’ll save money in the long run because she won’t be buying glasses every year. It’s not an indulgence, it’s an investment, see?
I bumped into her in the hall a moment ago. She was running out to Subway to buy lunch because she doesn’t get up early enough to pack a lunch and besides, sandwiches get dried out and that’s just gross.
Why do I feel so old, all of the sudden?
We’ve got a generation – or part of one – that’s never really known want, and, since their Depression-era relatives are mostly gone, haven’t heard about it.
What would they know?