Monday, March 16, 2009


I watched a wise man stand up before a crowd of folks last Sunday and say, "Every crisis is a birth." If that's the case then, by all means, cigars all around.

Other than the super spectacular implosion of Capitalism, I am completely obsessed with the Bernie Madoff case. I crossed some horrible humanitarian line last week when I noted my own reaction to recent news:

"Oh, wow, two more school shootings. Tsk, tsk, tsk, that's terrible (yawn)," ... "BUT WTF WITH THIS MADDOFF GUY???? I MEAN WHAT KIND OF SICKO DOES THIS??? WHAT CAUSES THIS KIND OF CALCULATED DARKNESS???"

This is a guy who lied to his friends and family (though not all of either, as I'm sure we'll learn) but mostly, he lied to the world and to himself - year after year, month after month, day after day all while robbing everyone blind.

I remember spitting venom for that buttstain of a man, Charles Keating, back during the Lincoln Savings debacle - his victims were senior citizens. But this guy Madoff has pulled off the largest grift the world has ever seen ... thus far. It's so evil, I keep waiting for a Mini-Madoff to appear and then watch pinkys perch upon devilish grins.

So, I'm pondering all these poor souls (alas, literally) who were just looking after their own futures - or the futures of their organizations - and got taken in by Madoff. And I'm watching the headlines as Americans are learning to live with less and I'm thinking about a time in my life when I learned just how little one needs to survive.

Though I'm frugal and extravagant at the same time ("free" is my favorite flavor, I'm fond of saying), I am still shocked at how much stuff I have. Yet, I live in a neighborhood that, up until the brick wall of a mortgage crisis hit, was quickly succumbing to McMansion Measles. Every other early-1950s-style home (approx. 650 sq. feet) was quickly being 'scraped' to be replaced by an oversized home that occasionally sport turrets like were in the middle of g*damn Scotland.

This is my long rambling way of saying that I've started a new blog to document the year I took off packed like a turtle, with whatever I had on my back, and went out into the world, to see what I could see. I learned a lot during that time about paring down and I'm hoping there are lessons I can relearn during this tumultuous birth.


Anonymous said...

Wheeeee! I've been waiting for this travel blog!

You look like Matthew McConaughey from Sahara in that photo. Er, uh, yeah. Good thing.

ClizBiz said...

Yay! I don't know who you are but glad to provide. Since the new blog will involve more time than the usual post (deciphering my handwriting, light editing and photo scanning), I may only get to it once a week. Will post a reminder link here when it is updated.

Xa said...

Perhaps you need to lurk around Nino's 208 in NYC. They're offering free grub to Madoff victims:
Madoff Swindled You? Dinner’s on Nino

ClizBiz said...

Ooooh, great tip! Hey, it's a start anyway. What is going to happen to those people? Can they rent an apartment together?

Kath said...


Susie said...

Finally! I love these stories - I am so glad you're going to tell them to the world.

Camille Bright-Smith said...

Its interesting to me that this Madoff crap, and all that has come with it, has motivated so much creativity. I am excited to see your new blog and live the dream via your adventures and lessons! How I long for a year off to travel....