Saturday, October 04, 2008


This was a tough week for a lot of people. The financial meltdown on Wall Street turned many Billionaires into mere Millionaires and scores more who thought they had a future (or maybe a house) into folks wondering if they'll ever work again or how much of their stuff can fit in a grocery cart.

If you read the papers -- or more correctly, if you BELIEVE what you read in the papers, we'll shortly be unable to afford retirement, shelter, transportation or food. In other words, the entire world will become a Canadian Artist.

From a media perspective, it's fortunate the collapse of Capitalism-as-we-know-it came along when it did. After a couple of years of Global Warming scenarios in which we were all drowned by melting ice caps, wiped out by unleashed tropical diseases or felled by methane released from the thawing tundra, we still hadn't panicked en mass. So now they get to cook up a whole new series of Post-Apocalyptic scenarios people wouldn't buy in a Roger Corman movie, but which apparently sell newspapers.

Like all dark clouds, however, the Sub-prime Credit fiasco has its silver lining. Playboy magazine has announced it will do a feature entitled "The Women of Wall Street" allowing everybody to see what their favorite financial analyst looks like when the only suit she has left is the one she got for her birthday.

This is a repeat of something Playboy did successfully in 1989 after some other Market collapse. I don't remember that issue. I was married back then and only allowed to read the articles. Of course, that was also a time when the magazine still had both a readership and relevance.

But, ever determined to appear current, Hugh Hefner pulled his oxygen mask and Viagra drip aside long enough to promise a payment of $2000 per model formerly employed by an investment bank or brokerage and willing to bare her "assets".

No wonder 2 out of 3 of Hef's current "Girlfriends" are cheating on him. He's so out of touch he doesn't know that two grand barely covers a Blackberry data plan these days.

Closer to Legion World Headquarters in my hometown of Newmarket -- our major employer, Magna International, has seen its stock drop 40%. This meant co-owner Oleg Deripaska, one of those Billionaire Russian blingsheviks who've been buying up all the good soccer teams and mediocre Canadian conglomerates, defaulted his entire ownership share to some obscure French bank.

Oleg already couldn't travel to the USA or he risked sharing a room with such Canadian corporate icons as Conrad Black and Bernie Ebbers. Which, in that odd way that business works around here, made him much in demand as a co-CEO.

Unfortunately, his departure has a lot of my neighbors wondering if they'll have jobs in the not too distant future. That suddenly puts them on a par with their other neighbors who used to make cars or Canadian TV shows.

So I thought I'd post this little film about being "Laid Off". In some ways, the concept is not as bad as it might sound. And in some other ways, it is.

Enjoy your Sunday -- while you still can.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

My show was pushed (again) to mid-January 2009. Had to revise my MLS search (also again) from a 600 square foot one bedroom to a bachelor with a hide-a-bed. Spent the better part of my day wondering how to MacGyver a bookshelf to the ceiling. Your 41st Lazy Sunday was the first good laugh I've had in weeks.