Some Homeless News and a Shameless Plug

So things are pretty slow here.  Book is finished but I’m waiting on them to get through the usual string of legal procedures ‘n all that jazz.  I guess none of the exciting stuff starts until after that.  I’m feeling mighty tired of late, even when I don’t have any reason to be, and I’m starting to wonder if perhaps I have the hypoglycemia that runs in my family (both my mother and sister have been diagnosed with it, and my grandfather has diabetes).  I feel more exhausted than I’ve ever felt in my life, just completely sapped of energy.  I want to get checked out for it but have to wait until I can afford health insurance, yay.

Some interesting articles I’ve come across that pertain to homelessness either directly or tangentially:

Some companies openly admit to ignoring all résumés from unemployed candidates, effectively discriminating against those who have, for instance, been laid off due to no fault of their own.  Or any other reason – and there are dozens of legitimate reasons to be unemployed.  Hell, the long-term unemployed (6 months or longer) have surged to 46% of unemployed individuals during the recession; the highest percentage EVER on record (records date all the way back to 1948).

This isn’t normal.  These people need jobs.  And the hiring companies are rubbing it in their face that they won’t even be considered. Many are including it in the job description advertisements:  ”Client will not consider/review anyone NOT currently employed regardless of the reason.”  It doesn’t matter how skilled or qualified you are, you will be discriminated against on the basis of employment status.  One HR representative interviewed in the article is quoted:  ”It’s our preference that they currently be employed…We typically go after people that are happy where they are and then tell them about the opportunities here.

So companies would rather go poaching employees from other companies, employees who are happy where they are, than dip into the masses of qualified unemployed who need to work in order to feed their family, to keep their house.  Yet, I bet these same companies are shaking their heads, tsk tsk-ing about the recession, what a massive effect it’s had on America, and when will it all just end already?  When will the economy right itself?  For shame.  They’re such a huge part of the problem.

I’m shocked that there aren’t laws against this type of discrimination.  Prepare yourself for an increasing number of phony résumés, employers.  That’s all that you’re really accomplishing here.  Hell, if I were unemployed and my only shot at a job that I was fully qualified for was “stretching the truth” and saying that I currently had a job…would I lie?  I’m not going to say I wouldn’t.  Desperation can do that to a person.  I don’t advocate lying, but I can’t say that I would judge any desperate, qualified individual who can work and wants to work, but is being discriminated against due to circumstances beyond his or her control.  It’s disgusting.

On a brighter note, New York City has abandoned its widely-decried plan to charge working homeless people rent for shelter services.  So, that’s something.  Instead, shelter beneficiaries with jobs will be required to set aside a percentage of their earnings every month in a savings account that they will have access to once they leave the shelter system.  This will provide them with accrued savings in the bank once they transition into permanent housing.  It’s still not perfect, but it’s quite a big step, and I like the initiative.

And now for my shameless plug:  I have to sell my engagement ring, and my ex-fiancé’s engagement ring as well.  I’m very conflicted about it, but better that I get it over with.  Out of sight, out of mind, right?  Besides, I could always use the money, of course.  So, if anybody out there is interested in antique jewelry, or in engagement rings in particular, please feel free to consider mine – I’ve linked to the eBay listings.  If you’re a serious buyer, please also feel free to email any questions to me at info@girlsguidetohomelessness.com.

The female engagement ring is a French, platinum/gold diamond ring circa 1899-1900, the turn of the century (and the time and setting of Moulin Rouge, one of my favorite movies!)  The year in which it was crafted straddles three of my favorite time periods – the Victorian, Edwardian, and Art Nouveau eras.  It features a center diamond entwined by softly curving diamond-set “vines” that are an excellent example of early Art Nouveau style, which would morph later that decade into the characteristic “whiplash” curves that we think of today.  You can tell that I just love this stuff, don’t you?  Antique style really speaks to my heart, especially Art Nouveau, which is highly derivative of nature and feminity.  The pictures aren’t the greatest, but that’s because I’ve got a crap camera.  For serious buyers, I can attempt to take a video of the ring, which might not be a great deal better, but at least should do a clearer job of capturing the fire of the diamonds.

The man’s ring I haven’t yet listed, but it will probably go up tonight or tomorrow.  I’ll update here once photos are posted and link to the listing.  It is a large Georgian signet ring made of bloodstone (dark green stone with flecks of red), circa 1820-1830.  It’s set in gold and framed by two serpents twined into infinity symbols.  Serpents were Georgian era symbols of love, commitment, fertility, and wisdom.  Bloodstone is known as the “stone of courage” and supposedly revitalizes love, relationships, and friendships.  The stone was also used in healing and protection by the ancient Egyptians, Aztecs, and Greeks.  I don’t particularly believe in any of the new-agey or spiritual stuff, obviously, but it’s fascinating history nonetheless, and that’s what I love the most.

Sooooo…yeah.  Also, both rings will be heavily featured in the book coming out next Fall, so if your future intended is of a literary bent and wants to brag that he or she owns a ring from a book, well, now’s your chance.  Otherwise, it’s just a fantastic ring for history buffs and antique/vintage lovers.  If one of my blog readers purchases it, let me know and I’ll even throw in a free signed copy of the book when it comes out!

OK, shameless plug over.  Now back to your regularly scheduled broadcasting.

Comments

  1. Sorry, I’m one of the unemployed and not in the jewelry market, but it’s a beautiful ring! Gorgeous.

  2. Glad to hear that the book is finally finished.

    I know that you’d been working on the final version of it… so… Yay!

    Sorry to hear that you’re feeling run down – and if the pic at the top reflects how you’re doing, then most definitely you need to see a doc.

    Sending tons of positive energy your way to help you get back “up to speed.”

    - m -

  3. Mary McK says:

    I find it disgraceful that companies do not employ the unemployed. How undignified of a company. You should always hire the most qualified, regardless.

    BTW, congrats on everything. Good luck selling the rings too.

  4. You’ve been on a whirlwind for the past. Your body is saying rest & take care of yourself or you wont have the energy to help those who you need to help. Sorry to hear that hypoglycemia is possibly slowing your energy level. Until you get it officially diagnosed, you can change you eating habits right away that should help you feel better in a few days, if it is hypoglycemia. Stress can accelerate your symptoms too. It messes with your hormone levels & insulin is a hormone.

    Eat small meal/snacks every few hours of high protein, low carbohydrate food. Stay away from refined sugars! It will make you feel better, but your blood sugar will crash sooner & you’re symptoms will be back! Eat Raw, fresh Fruits(not juices), Cheeses, eggs, Beef, chicken, fish & nuts. High fiber, grains are good, because they breaks down slower , so it slows down the drop in your blood sugar. My symptoms show up when I’m not paying attention to the time schedule. I get tired, irritable, then a headache, then I progress into getting shaky, nauseous, feeling hot and dizzy.

    Hope you feel better soon! I’m proud of your book (CAN’T WAIT TO READ IT!) & all the help you’re doing for the homeless. Your efforts have made you grow stronger in your heart & sole and I’m sure it’s reflects into all you help!

    God Bless!

  5. Hypoglycemia is actually a stage of diabetes. I changed to a low carb diet in March this year. My doctor has now pronounced my diabetes “cured”! :-)

    When I was homeless, I ate from food shelves plus bought cheap foods. Very carb heavy. As soon as I changed to low carb, weight has been melting off me and most of the time I feel better and have more energy. Do your own research on low carb. Pick the plan best for you.

  6. Lucy Looking says:

    So glad I found you today! I am embracing the fact that I too will be homeless within the next few weeks. My problem is I care for my 75 yr old mother. I have 2 selfish and shameless brothers who told me my situation was tough and wished me luck, they could care less about their own mother. I have been unemployed since Nov. ’08. I did find temp employment but am back pounding pavement looking for work and on unemployment AGAIN! You have become my biggest source of inspiration of knowing that change is GOOD and I look forward to it.

    best to you with your health!

    I am 53 and have the same health issues in our family as well. Luckily my recent physical shows all is well and since then I have gone on the diabetic diet.
    Peggy offers some good advice!

    I cannot wait for your book!

  7. That is terrible that an employer can discriminate that way. My 61 year old mom was out of work for almost 2 years (she worked in the home loans division of WAMU) and just started working last week at a $10k per year cut.

    At least she is working and I hope that many others will be too and soon!!

    Thanks for yet another great post. See a doc and make sure that there is nothing serious going on.

  8. ~Bri, just a thought, if the rings have not yet sold, maybe you want to hold off. They are bound to be much more valuable after the book is published & even more so following the movie. At that point, you will hopefully be rolling in dough & may just want to keep them as part of your story.

    Hey, any chance that you’ll be heading north this summer? Would love to see you!

  9. linda (soulmate47) says:

    Hi ~Bri~, Sorry to hear you’re not feeling up to par. Also, hate to hear that you are selling that ring you loved so much. It is gorgeous!!! I agree with Rev. Cynthia. Maybe you should think about keeping it.

    I used to do volunteer work at my local homeless shelter in Zellwood, Florida that was a model for the whole country. I have since moved from that area is why I say used to. They required that their residents have jobs and set aside money to eventually be able to move out on their own. Daycare was provided for those who had children. And once the residents were ready to move into their own place they were provided with the furniture, pots and pans, dishes, towels, etc… These items all donated by local residents.

    Hope you feel better!!!

  10. http://www.kcoy.com/global/story.asp?s=12675236 – More news here from SLO and Sunny Acres.

  11. Good luck to you, ring or no ring.

    Re news coverage about not hiring unemployed: I think that’s just the recruiting companies head-hunter policy. The guys they want are making big bucks already and they take a commission from the new job they get for him (and it’s almost always a him).

    For us lower pay types, it’s actually better not to have a job. I’ve observed job seekers who show up looking for work and I always observed if someone is neat, clean, eager, pleasant, respectful, ready and willing and has no other prior commitments, they have a better chance to be hired because they’re available for any shift. Keeping your mouth shut and nodding and smiling are good too. I have seen people NOT hired BECAUSE they had another job. There is suspicion on why you would want to leave a perfectly good job. I have been turned down because I already had a job.

    #1 Rule DON’T say you’re ON unemployment. DON’T breathe a word about being on it even if they ask. LIE LIE LIE.
    #2 Keep your mouth shut and don’t tell ANYONE you’re homeless.
    Tip: Look for seasonal holiday jobs and then the reason you were let go was because the holidays were over.
    Tip: Play around with the look of your resume. I have one resume style Times 12point type that always gets call backs. When I use another style or type I get silence. 12 point Times makes you look smarter. True.

    Or if you want to fib on your resume, a friend who is a cook always says she does catering jobs as a fill-in. I’ve done self-employed market research jobs here and there and add them to that part of my resume (the section that lumps ALL my self-employed market research jobs together which gives it a more recent date in the resume).

    As I was struggling over writing my resume and practicing interviews years ago, my wise teenage daughter, who was working in her first job at that famous cookie store in the mall said simply, “Mom, people hire people they want to work with.” I was dumbfounded. I had taken classes and been fed so much nonsense about the “right” way to apply for jobs.

    Almost all call centers will hire you. Find the call centers that need a lot of staff. It’s humbling for the formerly smug to become, “that annoying telemarketer who calls at dinnertime.” Thank God for those jobs when you really need them.

    Also, It’s a very good time to be a full-time student on financial aid.

  12. What! You and Matt broke up??!

  13. Indeed.

  14. Sorry to hear that. :(

  15. You’re sweet; thank you. It’s OK, really :)

  16. I’m so lost, are you still with that guy from London or is that his engagement ring you’re selling and yours? what happened to him?

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