Saturday, May 23, 2009

Where's the Sympathy?

Unemployment is awful, and frightening for most people.

Still, some war-stories just don't call up the sympathy reaction...

...Cavonberry’s, Yang’s 46th Street shop near the headquarters of the New York firm taken over by JPMorgan Chase & Co., once bustled with finance workers jostling to buy a barbeque chicken chopped salad and bottled water for $12. “They used to be turning them away at the door,”...

...In New York City alone, bonuses fell to $18.4 billion last year from $32.9 billion in 2007, the largest absolute drop ever, according to the state comptroller’s office...

On the convertible bond desk at Bear Stearns, traders made from $175,000 to $1 million annually, depending on bonuses, Irace said. He dined with co-workers at Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steak House, home of the $55.95 porterhouse. Now he earns $75 to $175 a day at Kellenberg Memorial High School and often brings a packed lunch from home

Another fellow also suffers.

Earning less, the attorney stopped buying a daily venti black iced tea, unsweetened, from Starbucks Corp., which said Jan. 28 it will cut 6,700 jobs this year. He goes less often to Procter & Gamble Co.’s Frederic Fekkai salon in Greenwich, Connecticut, where haircuts start at $125. His wife’s cousin in Queens trims it

Even waitresses have taken a cut.

...Many nights, financial types crowded tables where “bottle service” starts at $250 for a Veuve Clicquot Brut Rose 2000 champagne, said Jessica Rosa, a waitress at the time.

It wasn’t uncommon to see someone with a black American Express Co. card ringing up a $30,000 tab, said Tim Gaglio, who helped start the restaurant and bar in 2006.

At the peak, Rosa, 30, said she made $85,000 a year working three days a week.

It's a struggle everywhere, no?

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