Free the Canaries from Their Cages!
Things were not only bad on our street, they were terrible. And not only were they terrible, they were worse than terrible. Just when we thought we had hit a new low, zoom, down we went further. “This is the bottom!” we would say. And zoom, we were below the bottom. “It can’t get worse!” And zoom, zoom, darn it if we weren’t below the bottom of the bottom. Yes! Things were really bad!
The men on our street had lost their jobs and were now making an appearance as housewives: marketing, cleaning, and taking care of the little ones. This was bad. But then they began, like their wives, to get into fights. This was terrible. And then it didn’t take long before the electric companies began to shut off our meters. This was really worse than terrible. And when entire families sat around tables lit with candles because the electric was off, and all they had was a loaf of bread and tea, and when someone would invariably say, “It can’t get worse!” this was near the bottom. But when they went to the corner grocery to borrow on the bills so that they could have carfare to go looking for jobs, this was the bottom. And as if that were not enough, this particular winter was extra cold, so that, without money, we sat around without heat. This was below the bottom. And when the pipes began to freeze and burst, this was further down. Really, there was no end to how far down things went. Even the bottom had a bottom.
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