Jerry Smith

Because you are alive, everything is possible.


American Dream breeds shame and blame for job seekers | BBC News

If you can’t find a job it is hard not to to take it personally

Decades ago, the American dream inspired employees, offering the promise of the good life. But now, with jobs disappearing, that dream has become a nightmare for the unemployed who see their joblessness as a personal – and shameful – failure.

Victor Tan Chen studies some of the unluckiest people in the US.

The sociology fellow at the University of California, Berkeley, researches car workers in cities like Detroit, hard-hit by the economic downturn and by long-term trends in the US industrial base.

“But they used to be the luckiest men in America,” Chen says.

Decades ago, car workers lived the quintessential American Dream: they pursued stable, well-paying, union-backed jobs, often straight out of high school. They were able to build a middle-class life and provide the promise of something better to their children.

Times have changed.

Now jobs are scarce, and people feel shame in being unprepared for the current labour market.

“Unemployed auto workers, factory workers, they have a lot of regrets about the past,” he said.

“A lot of workers are internalising, ‘You succeed on your own merits and your own abilities, and if you fail, you’re to blame’,” Chen says.

He isn’t alone in seeing this pattern.

Experts tell the BBC that job seekers in the US are now, more than ever, blaming themselves for being out of work, due in part to misconceptions about what it takes to succeed in America.

Unemployment by the numbers

  • 10.5 million: The number of people currently unemployed in the US
  • 3.8 million: The number of people in the US who have been unemployed 27 weeks or longer
  • 11.8 weeks: The average duration of unemployment in 1950
  • 37.1 weeks: The average duration of unemployment in 2014
  • 1,000%: The rate at which the ratio of CEO-to-worker pay has increased since 1950
  • 204: The number of times that a Fortune 500 CEO’s salary eclipses an average worker’s
  • 874: The number of times more, per hour, a CEO makes compared to a sales associate at a sample of US retail and fast-food chains

via BBC News – American Dream breeds shame and blame for job seekers.


Job-In-A-Box: When You Cannot Find A Job, Create One. | LinkedIn

(I am creating my own job)

Hopefully one day our big business community will return to their vaulted and honored role as America’s Chief Employment Officer, but that day is not today. In the short term, big business is not the primary driver of local job growth. You and I are going to have to do that. And remember, every big business was once a small one.

  • JP Morgan Chase, one of the largest banks in the world today, was actually started by a guy named JP Morgan.
  • Bank of America was started by an Italian immigrant in a small store front in San Francisco.
  • UPS was started as a simple messenger company, with $100 by James Casey.
  • CNN was started by Ted Turner with a hog show, and with very few viewers. Yes, a hog show.
  • FedEx was started by a man named Fred Smith, who’s still there!

via Job-In-A-Box: When You Cannot Find A Job, Create One. | LinkedIn.


Florida high school graduation rate rises again – Orlando Sentinel

Floridas high-school-graduation rate bumped up again in 2013, with Central Florida schools mirroring the trend and a handful getting more than 90 percent of their students to commencement.

The states graduation rate was 75.6 percent this year, capping a decade-long trend of improvement. In 2003, it was 56.5 percent, according to Florida’s

annual high-school-graduation report released Wednesday.

Seven Central Florida schools — six in Orange County and one in Seminole County — posted graduation rates above 90 percent. Timber Creek in east Orange 93.9 percent and Hagerty High near Oviedo 94.2 percent had the best rates among traditional high schools.

via Florida high school graduation rate rises again – Orlando Sentinel.


2014 Kia Soul 2.0 Instrumented Test – Review – Car and Driver

We rarely take cuteness into account as an automotive virtue—styling, yes; cuteness, not so much—and hamsters normally merit no mention whatsoever. But those two factors nevertheless played huge roles in the massive success of the first-generation Kia Soul, which perhaps caught even its maker by surprise.

Surprising or not, when it came time for a major makeover, Kia’s design team was careful not to dilute the boxy, offbeat styling that endeared the Soul to so many since its 2009 introduction. (It’s the company’s second-bestselling model after the Optima.) All sheetmetal is new, according to Kia, but it preserves the trapezoidal shape outlining the greenhouse, and it takes a well-schooled observer to discern the new Soul from the original unless the two happen to be parked side by side.

It’s much easier to make hamster distinctions.

via 2014 Kia Soul 2.0 Instrumented Test – Review – Car and Driver.


Krampus the Christmas Demon


 Saint Nicholas accompanied by Krampus

Saint Nicholas accompanied by Krampus

Krampus is the dark companion of St. Nicholas, the traditional European winter gift-bringer who rewards good children each year on December 6. The kindly old Saint leaves the task of punishing bad children to a hell-bound counterpart known by many names across the continent — Knecht Ruprecht, Certa, Perchten, Black Peter, Schmutzli, Pelznickel, Klaubauf, and Krampus. Usually seen as a classic devil with horns, cloven hooves and monstrous tongue, but can also be spotted as a sinister gentleman dressed in black or a hairy man-beast. Krampus punishes the naughty children, swatting them with switches and rusty chains before dragging them in baskets to a fiery place below.

Krampus is celebrated on Krampusnacht, which takes place on the eve of St. Nicholas’ Day. In Austria, Northern Italy and other parts of Europe, party-goers masquerade as devils, wild-men, and witches to participate in Krampuslauf (Krampus Run). Intoxicated and bearing torches, costumed devils caper and carouse through the streets terrifying child and adult alike. Krampusnacht is increasingly being celebrated in other parts

via :: home of the holiday devil :: Who’s Krampus?.


Millennial narcissism: Helicopter parents are college students’ bigger problem.

Amy (not her real name) sat in my office and wiped her streaming tears on her sleeve, refusing the scratchy tissues I’d offered. “I’m thinking about just applying for a Ph.D. program after I graduate because I have no idea what I want to do.” Amy had mild depression growing up, and it worsened during freshman year of college when she moved from her parents’ house to her dorm. It became increasingly difficult to balance school, socializing, laundry, and a part-time job. She finally had to dump the part-time job, was still unable to do laundry, and often stayed up until 2 a.m. trying to complete homework because she didn’t know how to manage her time without her parents keeping track of her schedule.

I suggested finding a job after graduation, even if it’s only temporary. She cried harder at this idea. “So, becoming an adult is just really scary for you?” I asked. “Yes,” she sniffled. Amy is 30 years old.

Her case is becoming the norm for twenty- to thirtysomethings I see in my office as a psychotherapist. I’ve had at least 100 college and grad students like Amy crying on my couch because breaching adulthood is too overwhelming.

via Millennial narcissism: Helicopter parents are college students’ bigger problem..


How to Make a State Necklace {DIY} – Two Twenty One

How to Make a State Necklace {DIY}

{this is such a cool idea}

I’m pretty sure many of you have seen those state shaped necklaces floating around the Interweb for the past couple years.  I’ve looked into them and debated purchasing, but the $50+ price tag always gets me.  Don’t get me wrong, I support handmade items, but I’m a cheapskate when it comes to certain things (she get it from her momma), especially things I can DIY. When I start making my millions I’ll by handmade like it’s my job.  Until then, I’ll save my $50 for our electric bill and attempt to make my own.

via How to Make a State Necklace {DIY} – Two Twenty One.


DIY: Instagram Coasters — Foam Magazine

As our iPhone libraries begin to overflow, we’re always on the search for practical, tangible uses for our Instagram snaps. Spruce up your place or dish these D.I.Y. coasters out to your friends to remind you all of your latest outdoor adventure/ music festival outing/ seafaring weekend.

via Articles: Instagram Coasters — By Hayley Decker — Foam Magazine Articles.


DIY Gift: Terrarium Kit | Wit & Whistle

It’s widely accepted that terrariums are awesome, which means they also make awesome gifts. It’s hard to wrap a terrarium though, so a DIY kit is the perfect solution. It would be easy to whip up a whole bunch of these kits if you need a lot of inexpensive, creative gifts. Or wouldn’t they make amazing party/wedding favors? I designed some free printable cards with planting and care instructions for you to download and include in your terrarium kit. The recipient will just need to add soil and plants!

DIY Gift: Terrarium Kit

via DIY Gift: Terrarium Kit | Wit & Whistle.


31 Ways to Earn Extra Cash Before Christmas | Money Saving Mom®

I found this series on

Money Saving Mom®  an upbeat and encouraging blog dedicated to helping you find money-saving coupons and deals inspiring you to wisely manage your time and resources and challenging you to live your life with intention and purpose

money saving momWelcome to October’s series on 31 Ways to Earn Extra Cash Before Christmas.

In this series, I’m highlighting simple and legitimate ways you can earn extra cash in the next three months for those of you who could use a little extra cash to help you pay for Christmas — or just for your living expenses if you’re in a tight spot right now.



31 Ways to Earn Extra Cash Before Christmas | Money Saving Mom®.

%d bloggers like this: