Pardon me while I use this post to take care of some important administrative business

From: Jon, a.k.a. Daddy Scratches
1 Way Too Expensive House
Chokingly Huge Mortgage, MA, 0MFG!

To: The Bank

Dear The Bank,

Listen, about that money I owe you? See, here’s the thing: I bought this house and all this other shit when I had, you know, a job.

Problem is, I found out a couple days ago that my job? My job of the past 10 years? The dream, work-from-home, full-time-music-journalist job that I love so much? Yeah, that’s gone. Pfft. Gonzo. See ya. Buh-bye.

And, sadly, gone with it are all those other things I love so much … things like a paycheck … and my family’s health insurance.

Now, I’m not sure if you read my blog (though I’m assuming you do, because, really, who doesn’t, am I right?). Anyway, as you no doubt noticed a couple of weeks ago, I alluded to, but did not specify, a then-embargoed subject that I described at the time as being “the biggest source of my stress right now.” And, in hearing the news of my sudden unemployment, I’m sure you’re thinking to yourself, “Well, that must have been the thing to which he was alluding.” And, boy howdy, do I ever wish that was the case.

As it turns out, however, the thing to which I was alluding was the fact that my wife and I recently made the decision to uproot our family and relocate from the suburban-Boston area (where my side of the family lives) to the suburban-Philadelphia area (where her side of the family lives) — a decision that we’ve agonized over for years, because we love both sides of our family and wish we could simultaneously live in both places, but we can’t … and since her family is too selfish to all move up here, and my side of the family is too selfish to all move down there, we have to pick one.

Thing is, as it stands right now, we’re not planning to let the loss of my job change our decision … and since this relocation plan already was financially maniacal (because, as you, The Bank, already know, we bought at the height of the housing market, borrowed more money than we could afford and spent six years accruing an assload of additional debt while the housing market tanked, to the extent that we’ll be lucky to get out of here with cab fare to Philly), I was thinking maybe you could just, like, give us a pass on what we owe you. I’m assuming this won’t be a problem, particularly in light of the massive bailout with my wife and I and, you know, the rest of America recently helped you.

Thanks in advance for what I’m sure will be your compassionate and understanding response to the unfortunate position in which I currently find myself. You guys are the bestest bank EVERRRR!!!

Yours in perpetual indentured servitude,


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  1. Posted May 6, 2010 at 7:58 am | Permalink

    Good luck with that one Jon.

    If it works, let me know. I might have a go at my bank too.
    .-= Dan´s last blog ..Election Blues =-.

  2. Posted May 6, 2010 at 8:01 am | Permalink

    Holy crap I am so sorry to hear this, and it’s something I can totally empathize with on almost all points (we are in similar situation). My prayers are that this all works out, if you ever want to vent hit me up.
    .-= Clark Kent’s Lunchbox´s last blog ..The Reading Parent =-.

  3. Posted May 6, 2010 at 8:12 am | Permalink

    So, so, so sorry to hear this. However, know that you’re not the only one in the boat filled with skunk shit. I’m less than 2 weeks away from giving birth to our first born and my company had the “decency” to bring me in on Tuesday and let me know that I would probably be let go after my maternity leave. But at least they are letting me keep my benefits during maternity leave. Did I mention I am the sole provider? Or that my husbands brother just died a month ago (very unexpectedly)? Sorry to vent… especially in a comment. You and your family are in my prayers, and people tell me that “everything works itself out in the end,” so keep your chin up. And I hear that the bank is really understanding if you bring them cookies. 🙂

  4. Pam
    Posted May 6, 2010 at 8:34 am | Permalink

    Damn, just damn.

  5. Posted May 6, 2010 at 8:48 am | Permalink

    But, silver lining — Daddy Scratches in Philly! We’ll have to find a good source of cheap margaritas….
    .-= RuthWells´s last blog ..Autism Speaks, and So Do I =-.

  6. Posted May 6, 2010 at 8:55 am | Permalink

    Let me know if that works, I will replace “Jon” with “Margaux” and “suburban-Philadelphia area” to “in-law’s guest room”. We actually know more people without jobs than with right now. So, there’s that…

    Hope it works out for you guys. :/

  7. Jamie, Mom of 3
    Posted May 6, 2010 at 8:55 am | Permalink

    So sorry to hear that! We went through the loss of my husband’s job about 10years ago. After we’d bought our dream house, like weeks after actually… It in a word, blew. But, we are still in our home and we are both working. I’m sure things will be fine for you as well. Good luck to you!

  8. Posted May 6, 2010 at 10:31 am | Permalink

    Oh that sucks! Hey, now you’ll have time to pack and stuff, could make that part of the move less stressful…or not. Good luck!
    .-= Dcan´s last blog ..Macro Monday – String art =-.

  9. Posted May 6, 2010 at 10:58 am | Permalink

    1. Sorry ’bout your job, man. That’s pretty much the height of suckiness.
    2. Good luck with the move – maybe it will bring a whole bunch of positive stuff to your lives. You can say thank you to the eternal optimist in me.
    3. PLEASE please please send that letter to your bank. Then let us know what they said so we know whether or not to send similar letters to our banks.

  10. Posted May 6, 2010 at 11:07 am | Permalink

    “Ow,” simply does not do this topic justice.

    “OW FRIGGIN’ HOLY CROW OW!” is only marginally closer.

    And I’ll think good thoughts for you on that bank thing.

    They’re a pretty consumer-friendly industry. I’m sure it’ll all work out.

    .-= Lori @ In Pursuit of Martha Points´s last blog ..The Top Secret World of Blogging =-.

  11. Posted May 6, 2010 at 11:30 am | Permalink

    So I started writing this and then realized Casey in comment 9 said everything I wanted to say, but better. So Ditto Comment 9. 🙂

    (PS. This could all be great foder for the bog. Did you ever get that article on 100 blog topics I emailed?)
    .-= Kernut´s last blog ..Casa de Something For Everyone =-.

  12. Colleen
    Posted May 6, 2010 at 11:34 am | Permalink

    I’m sorry you’re going through this. I know (all too well) the stress, frustration, anger and sadness that you’re going through.

    The bright-side of course is that you have a gorgeous family and I’m betting a really strong support system. So just hold on tight for this bumpy ride and know you’ll be fine at the end.

  13. Paula B
    Posted May 6, 2010 at 11:51 am | Permalink

    Sorry for the job, my hubcap just reentered the workforce after being out of work for a year.

    Now on to the fun stuff. If you haven’t already decided on a place to live, I highly recommend Media, PA. We lived there for 7 years, and both kids started school in at Rose Tree Elementary. And they have a great school. Small, and totally focused on the kids. You can always email me if you want more details.

  14. Posted May 6, 2010 at 11:52 am | Permalink

    Dear Jon,

    No worries, buddy! We totally understand. Just leave the keys in the mailbox when you leave. Do you need some cash for the move?

    Yours Truly,

    The Bank

    P.S. If you want us to send some guys around with a Brinks truck to help you move, just text me 🙂
    .-= beta dad´s last blog ..RTT: Back In the Working World =-.

  15. Posted May 6, 2010 at 12:18 pm | Permalink

    I am very sorry to hear that you find yourself unemployed. I went thru the same thing in 2008, along with a health scare and the destruction of my marriage (not all related to my job loss). It’s a mind-altering reality to find yourself unemployed with a family to support. I wish you all the luck in finding a new career path and hope that Philly gives you all exactly what you need when you get there.
    .-= Jeff Brown´s last blog ..Love at first sight =-.

  16. Posted May 6, 2010 at 12:31 pm | Permalink

    Best wishes with your new free time, the move, and starting over after you uproot. Have a Corona or two in the mean time.
    .-= Kara´s last blog ..Ways to humiliate your dog, part 5 =-.

  17. Deeters
    Posted May 6, 2010 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

    Soooo…all I read was that you are a Phillies fan now??

    My husband had a job offer in Detroit. While I was researching schools, daycare, neighborhoods, and jobs for me – he was checking ticket prices for Tiger games.

    THe job offer fell through – he was glad – he really doesn’t want to have to like the Tigers – we are Chicago White Sox fans.

    Smooches and good luck –

  18. Marisa
    Posted May 6, 2010 at 1:08 pm | Permalink

    So sorry to hear this news, Jon. We went through this several years ago when my husband lost his job, and I was pregnant with our first child. It was a struggle for sure, but we made it through and I know you will too. Good things await you in Philly!

    In the mean time we are all here for you!

  19. Posted May 6, 2010 at 1:29 pm | Permalink

    Ew. Oh, dear. That sucks.

    I am in a weird place now . . . Spouse employed, but because we are expats and he is employed by a European company, it doesn’t come with benefits. The national health system provides healthcare, but we currently have no LIFE insurance. And the Spouse had a pulmonary thrombosis at Thanksgiving. he was treated, all systems are go, things looks fine. But if he should die . . . I will have nothing but a mortgage in Columbus, Ohio, two kids under 13, and resume that reflects only that I have been out of the job market since 1998. I’m keeping my fingers crossed.

    Now, enough about me. You will be fine. Really. I know you don’t believe me, but in three months, this will all be over. And for the better, too.


    It will.
    .-= The Expatresse´s last blog ..Staples =-.

  20. Gullible
    Posted May 6, 2010 at 3:09 pm | Permalink

    Best wishes, DS. I’ll have my fingers crossed for you. Makes me ever so glad I’m retired and w/o mortgages, etc.

  21. Posted May 6, 2010 at 4:24 pm | Permalink

    Ooh, that really sucks. As does the writing industry, in various and myriad ways. Remember that just when it seems like all the jobs have vanished (outsourced to Mars, probably), another one pops us. I’ll be crossing my fingers that many, many pop up at once for you.
    .-= Kate at And Then I Was a Mom´s last blog ..Happily, the Internet tells me the bites only cause temporary, localized pain. =-.

  22. Tom
    Posted May 6, 2010 at 6:51 pm | Permalink

    Well Daddy, you sound like you might be on your way down to my neck of the woods.

    Do not despair! Many people here love Van Halen, and for the most part the winters are less harsh than Bean town. Also, the drive to Delaware beaches is much shorter.

    I live about 2 miles from Bossy and would still love to have a beer with you!

    I hope all works out for the best for you and your family, I’m sure it will.

  23. Posted May 8, 2010 at 8:48 am | Permalink

    So sorry to hear about your job! I’m sure the bank will be understanding and compassionate 🙂

  24. Posted May 9, 2010 at 2:55 pm | Permalink

    DUDE. That’s awful, good job putting a hilarious spin on something not at all hilarious. On a side note, I have lived in both Boston and Philly, and you can do no wrong with either city. Both of your families have great taste in where you live, I hope this switch goes as smoothly as one could reasonably expect.
    .-= Drew´s last blog ..To my Partner In Crime on her first Mother’s Day =-.

  25. Posted May 10, 2010 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

    I did write a letter like that (well, minus the sarcasm and heavy on the heartfelt honesty) to my bank. I wrote it over and over and over for nearly a year while we tried to sell our home (after my husband was also jobless and we also moved to another state) and you know what? It worked (I think it’s the most recent post on my blog, actually). We ended up selling the house through a short sale, the bank really did take the big hit on the property, and we ended up walking away with some dinged up credit but with no liability for the difference. It was a gut-wrenching year, and the house ended up selling for literally 25% of what we paid for it, 6 years ago. It was a total miracle.

    My husband is employed now, we live in a great house that we love (albeit a rental, but that’s perfect for us because we’re not ready to call this state our long-term ‘home’) with plenty of room for our kids (and I did have to write another heartfelt letter to the couple who was renting the home to explain our messy credit situation – and they still took us!)…and all that mess is behind us. Just like it will be for you.

    Being a writer in situations like this is a great advantage. Your communication skills will help you through. It may not be right now, but everything is going to be alright. If you have any questions or I can be of any assistance, let me know. Good luck, dude.

  26. Posted May 10, 2010 at 3:35 pm | Permalink

    As a former real estate agent turned unemployed beaten-down, indebted woman myself I can empathize with you. Did I mention my husband also was in real estate. I say WAS.

    And, I’m sure you’ve read my blog, because like yours, who hasn’t? Anyway, then you’d know that when I meant I “empathize with you” what I really meant was I’ve gotten a head start drowning my sorrows in vodka tonics. SO, it wouldn’t be fair to play drinking games together.

    You wouldn’t mind greatly if I printed out and sent this letter to my creditors, would you?
    .-= BuenoBaby´s last blog ..A mother’s body =-.

    • Posted May 10, 2010 at 3:37 pm | Permalink

      BuenoBaby: By all means. Be my guest. Anything to help a fellow deadbeat. 😉

  27. Amanda
    Posted May 11, 2010 at 7:12 pm | Permalink

    Dude. If that’s not just a kick in the ol’ man cooter, I don’t know what is. You’ve got a great sense of humor about it, though, which is awesome.

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