Good article on what it is like for the working spouse of someone who has been laid off in Tampa Bay.
We know how unemployed people struggle. Dozens, if not hundreds, of candidates compete for every opening. People spend months sending out resumes, calling old contacts, straining to prop up their sagging self-esteem.
But what about their wives?
For a woman like Julie, being married to someone who is unemployed means working all the overtime you can get, but still worrying about losing your house. It means after a long day at the office you probably still have to do laundry and dishes, only now you have to make dinner too because you can’t afford to eat out. You’re working harder than ever, but you have to give up all the little things you used to do to reward yourself: drinks with a friend, a movie out, a new blouse from Target.
People try to understand, but they really don’t. They don’t know what it’s like to get up while he’s still sleeping and work all day knowing he’s home sitting in the dark because he doesn’t want to pay to run the lights. To pack your lunch because you can’t even afford fast food. To be stuck in that cramped house night after night, listening to the collection agents screaming on your answering machine. To spend your evenings watching shows like Intervention and Hoarders, anything to make your life seem less sad.
You can’t even enjoy that because you can’t really talk about anything. You don’t want to tell him about a good day at work when he’s been home all day, vegetating. You can’t complain about a bad day because at least you’re still working.
So what’s left? You tell him about the turtles you feed behind your office. He tells you about the fishing show he watched on TV. You talk about the kids and grandkids. You endure long silences. You try to go sleep, shut everything out. But sometimes you can’t because you’re thinking about all the things you can’t say, trying to take care of this man who once took care of you.
That’s the hardest part, Julie says, watching this person you love lose his pride, his sense of purpose.
It makes this sarcastic blog post come together as a response to Evan Longoria criticizing the Tampa Bay Rays fans for not showing up and paying to see him play baseball.
I don’t care that the there was no way of knowing that tonight’s game was going to be a clincher until well after midnight last night. I don’t care that maybe you don’t have the money or the time to drop everything and head out to a baseball game.
Maybe you should’ve called in sick to that second job you’ve got in the evening. Don’t worry, there’s not other people out there trying for the same job. Maybe you should find someone else to watch the kids while your husband is working overtime. Or maybe you should play hooky.
I don’t care that maybe you’re trying to save a few of your extra dollars to put toward a playoff ticket or two. I don’t care that you have other obligations for your money.
Dig deep. Real fans don’t make excuses, they figure out a way to get to the game. I don’t care that your house is upside down. If you were a real fan, you’d figure out a way to borrow the money to get to the game.
I’m sick of your excuses. You’re pathetic. The Rays deserve better than fans that can’t make it happen without a little bit of corporate support. Forget the fact that your boss has trouble justifying tickets for clients after the last round of layoffs and furloughs. Forget that you live in an area with one of the highest unemployment rates in the country. Just do your part and be a real fan.