Economic summit

Rick Ryckeley's picture

Last weekend was an historic time around our house. No, I didn’t finally win an argument with The Wife. Not that we ever argue, mind you, but if we did, I still wouldn’t win. She was the high school debate team coach for three years, and they won the state championship. Why start an argument when you know you’re gonna lose?

Last weekend wasn’t historic simply because we hosted the family reunion at our house during Christmas. It was my idea. Note to reader: If you’re going to have a family reunion during the busiest travel-shopping-frantic time of the year, you need only remember one rule to make it stress free. Don’t invite the family.

Nope, last weekend was historic because The Wife and I had our first ever economic summit. Like many, our piece of the money pie is ever shrinking, but not because we’ve done anything fiscally irresponsible. Instead of trickle-down economics, we now live in the age of trickle-down shortfalls.

The federal government runs out of money so they stop giving the states money. The states run out of money so they stop giving the local governments money. The local governments are now running out of money so they cut back. And to make up the shortfall, they raise fees. Guess who has to pay?

Now our pie is more like the size of a cupcake. So we’ve filed papers for our own economic summit and bailout. We figured if it works so well for the government, then it should work for The Wife and me.

Unfortunately, relief will have to wait for awhile. I think our bailout money is stuck in an appropriation sub-committee. Seems the Senate is too occupied with the passage of healthcare to worry about our request.

Besides, we’ve got healthcare. It’s a bailout that we really need. I’m sure after Christmas break they’ll get right on it. And our check will be in the mail.

Just in case we’re wrong and our check is delayed into late next year, we’ve decided to make some cut-backs of our own. First thing we decided was to delay any voting on where we could cut back our expenses — until after coffee. After all, to have any chance of a successful summit, one must first have their priorities in order. And not much else in this world trumps coffee time with The Wife.

After coffee, it was naptime. Medical studies have shown that an afternoon nap rejuvenates the brain and actually makes one’s thoughts sharper. Thirty minutes later we were up from our nap, rejuvenated, and ready to write down our thoughts and construct a budget for the coming year.

Actually, we decided to make better use of all that new-found energy. We took a walk around town. Afterwards, we had a nice dinner and a glass of homemade adult beverage from the basement. Bills? They could wait till morning.

Even though our request for a bailout doesn’t look like it will make it through the Senate anytime soon, our economic summit did give us some resolutions.

We decided that bills are forever, but our time with each other is not.

After you finish reading this last column for 2009, heed this simple economic advice: spend as much time as you can with your special someone. The return on that investment is worth more than all the money in the world.

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