Feeling Galtish on Sunday
Somehow, I’ve fallen behind on everything, in the past couple of weeks, so I’ve been trying to catch up a little this weekend. I’ve also been sorting through spreadsheets, trying to figure out the fluctuations of millions of dollars flowing into Tiverton’s school district.
While I had Microsoft Excel open, I thought I’d relax the mind and run some numbers inspired by a contentious meeting at the day job, on Friday afternoon. How, I wondered, would the labor numbers break out if one calculated all of the real costs of a typical construction gig with the amount billed to the client? The upshot is that — depending on the terms of employment and benefits — a carpenter’s salary can take a big hit when once transportation, tools, and some other considerations are factored in.
Frankly, strolling through two years of unemployment payments doesn’t compare all that unfavorably — and it tends to be a lot less strenuous, and certainly warmer, this time of year. Of course, that thought leads to the next: Layer in welfare, food stamps, RIte Care, housing assistance, and so on, and the fact comes into stark relief that, as a friend of mine is fond of putting it, all I really need is a library card. All the time I could spend reading and writing were I to decide just to step off the down escalator that I’m struggling to walk up.
That can’t be a conclusion to which members of a healthy society would be inclined to come.