I discovered that rejections are not altogether a bad thing. They teach a writer to rely on his own judgment and to say in his heart of hearts, \”To hell with you.\” ~ Saul Bellow

In tenth grade, I read a lot of Erma Bombeck and Art Buchwald. I wanted to be a humorist essayist as long as I could remember. Unfortunately, I didn\’t have a family willing to do funny things for me to write about. Nowadays, every blogger is an essayist. So competition is up. And it\’s the ol\’ supply and demand. Loads of supply. Demand is okay, but if you call it non-fiction, it had better be provable facts, right? So, there are two major things lacking in my career as a humorous essayist. Humor, being the big one. And someone willing to write me checks for writing them. I did find one market…but that\’s another story.

I\’m reading a book right now by Barbara Ehrenreich. Her job title, essayist. She is witty, funny and lives in Key West Florida. There are lots of essayists out there, most don\’t claim it as a job title. Most just post on their little blogs and go on with real lives. Since I don\’t have a \”real life\” ie paid employment on a regular basis, I have to get the essay production up.

I\’ve got three of her books sitting in my library pile, and so far, the first is a quick read. Nickel and Dimed is about some time she spent trying to see if one could really \”live\” on the living wage. No surprises to people that actually do, or rather try to. Not really, not without roommates, family, a community. Which contrasts with the American Ideal of pull yourself up by the bootstrap. What she proves, so far, in the 122 pages I read, is that hard work doesn\’t make you rich, just tired. Rich people, the kind that make their own wealth, may work hard, but there is another thing, a talent, an idea, something besides plain old hard work. I\’ve been there, done the menial labor thing. Or should I say, service industry.

Some accuse the growing service industry for the lack of state money for schools. Seems Merry Maids, and places like that don\’t have large things like plants and factories for fat property taxes. The maids sure don\’t make enough to own property to tax. I guess the problem with trickle down is it is indeed a trickle. And the service class is growing, and the user class is holding steady, and the in betweeners are diminishing. As is understanding.