The Second Edition of Casualties of the (Recession) Depression will be coming out late Fall – complete with new and updated socio-economic statistics, additional vignettes and chapters, and sporting a new cover.
This series of vignettes depicts the many faces of the Recession (really a 21st century depression). These are the firsthand account stories of real people. Their names have been replaced by the generic “he” – “she” – “they” … both to protect their privacy and also to bring home the point that it could happen to anyone, including you or me. In the context of this book, the objective was to record real, and sometimes raw, moments experienced by people who have been adversely affected by this long economic downturn. By capturing these brief episodes and providing a written backdrop for each year – in the form of an economic and political commentary– the reader can see the transformation and progression of this (Recession) Depression from its conception to its continued existence in the present day.
Here’s an excerpt from the book:
VIGNETTE: Through the Eyes of a Child
She skittered behind the stairwell and sat down. With her arms wrapped tightly around her knees, she watched through the space between the stairs. Her long ash blonde hair cascaded around her like a shawl. Her clear, blue eyes were wide and close to tears. The lady who lived next door was talking with her mother and as they passed by the stairs, the lady spotted her and smiled. She put her finger up to her nose silently. The lady understood and didn’t tell her mother that she was hiding under the stairs. They went into the next room.
She hadn’t seen her father all morning. The night before, her parents had a terrible fight. They were always fighting. But last night was the worst. They had been yelling at one another and then she heard her mother crying. She had buried her face in the pillow, to block out the sounds. After awhile, everything went quiet. From her bedroom window, she heard a noise on the back porch. She looked out and down, towards the porch, and saw that her father was sitting on the steps. She wiggled out of bed and tip-toed downstairs. She opened the screen door just enough so that she could see him better. He was bent over with his hands around his head. He was making a sound that she had never heard before. Daddy was crying! She had never seen her Daddy cry before. Things must be terribly wrong. Her heart started beating fast. She covered her mouth to stifle a cry. Quietly, she closed the door and went back upstairs to her room. She cried herself to sleep.
This morning, her mother told her to stay out of the way because men were coming to take all their furniture and things away. She didn’t understand why. There were four of them. Big and sweaty, they were taking things out of the house. Nobody noticed her behind the stairwell. She saw them take her princess canopy bed away. Her mouth began to tremble and she bit her lip, to keep from crying. A big man with no hair came out of her playroom, carrying her toy box and on top of the box was her favorite American Girl® Doll, Caroline. Caroline had blonde hair and blue eyes, just like her. She gasped. The big man heard her. He turned around and bent down slightly, squinting his eyes. Then, he spotted her. He saw her staring at the doll on top of the box that he was carrying. He started to turn away towards the front door, but her tear-stained face and big blue eyes stopped him. He looked around. No one else was in sight, or so he thought. Quickly, he grabbed the doll and slid it under the stairs. He put his fingers to his lips, “Shhh…” and gave her a wink. Then he was gone. She grinned from ear to ear and clutched Caroline to her chest.
She heard a noise and looked up. The lady next door extended her hand. She put her hand in the neighbor’s and, holding Caroline tightly, she got up from under the stairs. The lady called out to her mother and said that she would take her (and Caroline) next door for some tea and cake. She and the lady had always enjoyed their little tea parties together. She would miss the kind lady when they moved.
As they left the house, she saw the man with no hair. She gave him a shy smile and he looked at her. His eyes were soft and wet. “Maybe he’s coming down with a cold,” she thought.
Copyright © 2013-2014 by Heather Joan Marinos
All rights reserved.