May 19, 2011
I'm not kidding either. Today I got excited about shoe polish and then has this whole new epiphany on why the economy is horrible. I could sit here and blame the government on over sending but I'm convinced that ain't it. I think it's more personal than that. It begins with our homes and our communities.
I looked down at my shoes this morning and they were pretty badly scuffed. I think I need a new pair.
My mind went back in the days of my father getting ready for church Sunday morning. It almost always involved his shoe polish kit. He would get out the black shoe polish, his shoe rag and his brush. Carefully put the polish in the spots that need it and brush the scuffs away and shine them babies up nice and smart!
Then my thoughts went back to the days where you would see the shoe shine boys/ men with their gear waiting and ready to do a quick shoe shine while others waited to catch a bus, cab, train or plain. Back in the day, this was a business man earning his living or supplementing his income by shining shoes and possibly another businessman proud to hire him for his services. It was a service that fulfilled a small need. It was citizens creating and fulfilling jobs and feeding the economy, simply by shining shoes.
Thoughts of the shoe shine boy carried my thoughts over to shoe repair shops. Remember when Grandpa would take his shoes around the corner to the shoe repair shop to have them resoled or or have the heels put back on Grandma's pumps. Instead of spending the money on new shoes they repaired the old one's good as new for pennies on the dollar. And used them another 5 years.
After my mind marinated a while at the shoe repair shop is wandered over to the "MR FIXIT SHOP." Do some of you remember those small repair shops just in the back porch of old Mr Johnson's house? It would be full of vacuum cleaners, blenders, toasters,coffee makers and other small appliances needing repair? If he couldn't fix it, it wasn't really broke! Instead of spending the money on buying a new one Mr Johnson would work his magic and have it back to you in week!
Mr Fixit shops were business men who serviced the community while saving us a few dollars on our everyday can't live without favorite appliances. Where have they gone? I'm going to try and find one in my neighborhood and make sure I throw some business their way.
After my mind visited Mr Fixit's shop it went back to the neighborhood and I ran into.. of all people 50 cent! That's right the Singer/Actor Fitty Cent! You, "Hey shawty, it's ya birthday, We gonna party like it's ya birthday..." That Fitty Cent!
WHY HIM, you ask? I'ma tell you why him. This was a Tweet he had back in December when a blizzard hit his city:
"I'm going out to shovel snow and see if I can make me a few extra dollars today. I'm charging more if they want to take pictures."
- "I want a hundred dollars per house. I bet anybody ill make a grand moving snow today. Lol"
- "I got 4 people on one street to agree to my fee after they saw the first job I did. Now I'm looking for employees."
- "I'm paying 30 dollars and hour I only want 3 workers that 90 dollars and hour but I think we can do all 4 in a hour in a half. Lol"
- "One is a cute kid he has on a snow suit. So I'm sending him to ring the door bell to ask if we can shovel there snow. Lol"
He may have done about this a little funny, but he created jobs for a couple of kids in his neighborhood. For those who might miss the point of what Im trying to say, let me bring it to you this way. I'm going back to one of my father's examples:
My dad has lemon trees. He pays a little kid in his neighborhood a few dollars a week to come and pick up the lemons that fall out of his tree. Somewhere in Gilbert, AZ there'a a six year old with a puffed up chest because he has a job and makes money!! And as my Dad mentioned "he's protective of my yard and makes sure his buddies don't mess it up or destroy it."
I'm sure this comes in handy around trick or treat time.
Remember when we were kids and we cut grass, raked leaves, shoveled sidewalks, trimmed hedges, washed cars and walked dogs and did paper routes to make our pocket cash? We, the people of the neighborhoods were hired by the neighborhood to maintain the neighborhood. And it was good money for children and pre-teenagers. It created a good work ethic. I allowed us to learn how to budget and manage money at an early age. It made us not afraid to do dirty work, hard work, sweaty work. WE WERE NOT ABOVE THIS KIND OF WORK. These jobs supplied us with soda pop money,bubble gum money, baseball card money, movie money, hot dog at the ball game money. Money for the fair, we saved this money to buy our first bikes, or pair of high heel shoes or baseball mitts. These jobs rarely exist anymore.
I'm in a position right now where I'm looking at purchasing a home. I'm pretty much sold on a condo or townhouse. But lately a part of me is wanting to look into a Single family home with a yard. It would be fun hire some little dude in the neighborhood to rake my leaves, cut the lawn and shovel the driveway or even some little dudette who wants to come in once a week and dust or vacuum, sweep the driveway or weed a garden.
We could blame the non existence of these kinds of job weak work ethic of spoiled children today being given everything by their parents who aren't teaching them the value of earning their own money and just giving them everything. But what are we doing in our own communities to create the kinds of opportunities to give the economy the a boost as well as teaching the young folks the value of hard work and a dollar or two? It would be kind of fun to help provide this kind of community service to a neighborhood. It helped keep young folks out of trouble, bridged the generation gap and kept the economy flowing freely in our neighborhoods.
IM going to do my part to see what I can come up with in my neighborhood to get it flowing again. And I'm going to start by reinstating shoe polish into my life!