Misfortune Vultures

Lately, I have been waking up at 4:07 each morning with a splitting headache and the sense of being trapped in a long, echoing hall full of real-estate agents, attorneys and talk-radio personalities. The first group is trying to interest me in getting into things I cannot afford, the second group is trying to interest me in getting out of things I cannot afford, and the third group is telling me that I am stupid and responsible for the destruction of the American economy.

Now, I am in neither a foreclosure nor a short-sale situation, but I tend to internalize the bad news of others. And in those early-morning hours, while the pain shoots from my right temple into my molars by way of my ear, what I’ve internalized is that busted-Vegas misfortune has become a cottage industry in which everyone takes delight except the folks who have gone bust.

What else is one to gather from a series of 15-second radio spots that, taken together, advise us to get out of hock, then buy the distressed property left behind by someone else who was in hock, then trade in the old wedding ring to supplement the cash from our payday loan? The ads must work, because they keep airing. The diversification mavens have been dreaming of a new industry for Vegas. Seems like our misfortune has provided it. So, keep up the bad work, everyone: I’ll be hurting for you!