October 9, 2008
Only the stupid
I was at my usual "chump change" task of earning gift cards on the internet this morning, when the downpour came around 5:45. By the time Lora was eager to see the kids off to school, the rainbow had come out. Another lovely day in paradise.
But paradise is changing. Only about a quarter of the Mexicans seem to realize it. To others, the money tree has not died. It has just shed a few leaves.
On the run to Constructarama and Boxito yesterday, I again ran in to a masseuse who makes money off gringos, managing their errands because he is almost bilingual. The gringos are paying triple or more for what it would cost had they bothered to learn the language.
He was with Ricardo, who gave me a quick roll of the eyes. This is one one of the things he was talking about. The fine art of living with being overpaid while knowing it is inflationary.
But, he reads and listens. He knows the worldwide economy is busted! Work now while there is still money in the pipeline and work hard so a masseuse will call on you again for plumbing and electricity for gringos.
Meanwhile at the house, with Eriso and Jose are working their butts off, I have a woman who wants 200 pesos and loans for as little work as possible. She listened to what I saw on the internet and what had been going on in world markets while she worked on Tuesday. Then, I had to run Lora to the vet and told her what needed to be done while I was gone. I finished at the errand and saw her on her motorcyle with her daughter, rushing somewhere, clearly clutching the 300 pesos she had gotten - including a loan of 100 she promised to work off tomorrow or Saturday, when she would come again.
The men notice. A half hour to an hour and a half work for more than their daily wage. Eriso asked me what I pay her. I hemmed and hawed. All I could say is, "Too much." I'm going to have to let her go to preserve the entegrity of the other workers.
For me, yes, it's the money. But more importantly, this is not a stupid job site. And only the stupid would mess up on a job like this. And as they say in politics, it's the economy STUPID