When the Bulls were winning NBA championships, you could step into any elevator in the city and feel the vibe, the anticipation, the density or pressure of everybody paying attention, focusing. Perfect strangers striking up conversations, everybody assuming that everybody else was thinking about last night’s win or this evening’s contest. I think it’s happening again, but it’s not about the Cubs and the World Series (at least not yet).
I go to the hardware store today and the old thai guy who runs the place totals up my bill for some boiler parts. Then, pretty much out of the blue, he asks me, “So, what do you think about this $700 billion bailout?” Earlier this week, I went in to get a blood test and the arm sticker has his computer tuned to CNN political reports. I walk into a meeting the other day and about the first thing out of my client’s mouth is basically, “Can you believe this Palin mess?” And I’m hearing this election, the financial mess, and even conspiracy theories raised in conversations in decidedly (at least until now) non-political offices. There’s somethin’ happenin’ here, I think.
Now add to that, the President gets on the TV (finally)… but says basically, “Hey, this is really bad.” I’ve never heard of such a thing. The president’s supposed to get on and tell us it’s all gonna be okay. But then, the funny thing is, nobody seems to trust the government anymore, so when the Sec’y of the Treasury says people should be very scared, nobody seems to panic. I see a lot of people paying attention. Watching and waiting. Nervous, maybe, but not panicked. Like we’re all watching each other more than the TV, to know if everything is okay.
Yes, we’re on this big financial edge, but I think we might be on the edge of something more. And more positive. No way to know. What it is ain’t exactly clear, or so the song goes. But suffice it to say that the world is SO very upside down right now that the Cubs could finish the regular season with the best record in MLB, and if they win the world series, there is just no telling what kind of crazy strange world we could be in.
For what it’s worth, here’s the best bailout plan I’ve seen.