James' Dilemma

James leans back against the hard plastic of his seat on the train. He thinks about the man he had to let go today, envisions him telling his wife he's out of a job. He thinks of how a few years ago, before he became a supervisor, it could have been him getting his pink slip. Imagining the look on his own wife's face if he were the one breaking this sort of news makes him cringe.

James likes the house he and his wife bought shortly after his promotion, but the property taxes rose by an astonishing forty percent last year, an abnormal raise not likely to occur again but a painful one nonetheless. Between that and their mortgage, healthcare, pre-school for the youngest of their three kids, and a laundry list of other expenses, he can barely keep up.

It's okay, he thinks, as long as my kids get a chance. It's okay as long as they get an education and a clean slate. It's all okay if they can do something with this world.

8 comments:

  1. Sometimes it's easy to forget the troubles on the other side and the tough decisions. Nice slice.

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  2. I like the way his thoughts circled back to his motivation for trying to keep up. Kids have a way of motivating us, that's for sure. Nice job here.

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  3. Kinda highlights the harsh decisions some people have to make, and the consequences those decisions bring.

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  4. I also liked how his thoughts turned around. Even though he got the promotion, he still was concerned about the basics for his kids.

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  5. That... packs a lot into a very short flash. It's good he still has empathy, but has he really thought about what kind of world his kids are being left? Good one.

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  6. Ah, but what if the kids do no more for this world than James seems to have done?

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  7. Difficult decisions are always hard to make.

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  8. Hope both he and the kid end up OK. A nice window into how difficult decisions can be, and the myriad of ramifications they hold.

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