Thomasso’s Blog, May 23, 2009. All is quiet now in the neighbourhood. It was a hot day, but I’m not complaining.
Today was incredible! Not one cloud in the sky, and the temperature was close to perfect. The only tragic part was that I had a ton of homework to do. These damn papers are taking longer to do than the last batch I did. Anyway, enough about homework.
Yesterday I heard that my next door neighbour received his lay-off notice after his employer went through a huge down size and restructuring phase. He works for the local retail store and hearing that they were laying off people was a real big shock as we all thought that the economy was on the mend. I guess we are still on a downward trend as the markets continue to go through corrections. Sadly he may need the E.I. more than ever as finding a job that would give him the same wages that he was receiving is next to impossible. So he asked me for some advice on dealing with this government and all the bureaucracy that he will face, and some tips on what to do now that the axe has fallen.
I suggested to him that he first pay off as many debts that he can and throw away any credit cards that he has because this would the be worst thing to do by having anything that could generate debt again when you have no solid income. A lot of people think that credit is there as the last salvation to hold them through an economic downturn, but the truth is Banks are going to pull that back once they get wind that your income has being lost. Fortunately, my friend saw the logic in that, but whether or not he will throw those cards out is another matter.
We went through the forms which can all be done now on line. I member in the olden days, about ten years ago, doing anything with the government was so taxing, especially with time, as you had to personally go to the offices, then fill out the forms with a pen, and then wait as everything went back and forth by snail-mail. Even the on-line forms were a bit tricky and I don’t think even someone with a high school education could have caught all the pitfalls that I saw; it was too easy to check off the wrong box as some of the sentences and terminology were a bit ambiguous.
A lot has changed in such a short time, and this can be hard on someone who is less than a decade from retiring to grapple with as not everyone has jumped on the cyber world bandwagon. But nonetheless he laughed as he took the honours of clicking the send button with the mouse to send his forms, personal information and hopes of a happy tomorrow through cyber space.
My friend was grateful that I helped him. Going over the forms helped me too as I may need them when my employer bites the dirt.
So other than that, is was generally a peaceful and happy day. May we all get another one tomorrow.