10277Re: [PPLetterpress] Letterpress economics
- Dec 2, 2008Gerald:
I'll tell it. It doesn't hurt me to say this. And if it does, it can't hurt.
The signals do seem mixed, as you point out, but I think that's because
of the huge shift that is going on. As a civilization we are in a
painful process of deciding what businesses and paradigms will live and
which must go.
I do business with a local Los Angeles engraver. They say the business
is still coming in, but they are having more trouble getting paid and
they keep asking if I want to buy them.
The guy who usually helps me when I need machine repair is hard to get
in touch with. He once was someone who flitted about the West installing
this, repairing that. Now he is occupied with multi-day jobs
disassembling equipment and moth-balling it or getting it ready to ship
out of the country.
I have laid off six of my good people and am operating with as few as
My landlord is not in printing, but is affected by a printing business
(mine). He runs a large repair shop for Mercedes and other vehicles. His
large contract customers (some of the biggest business names in
Pasadena) bring him fleet work still, but are way behind paying their
invoices. Oh, and I'm a bit behind on rent, too. He's a worried man, and
so am I.
If I were happily puttering about with a two man business out of a home,
I probably wouldn't be noticing anything. There are still people who pay
for great letterpress work, but the general flow of commerce, the
little, regular sales that pay the rent and workman's comp and lights
and four-line phone with toll-free numbers and Pasadena Parking tickets
and liability insurance and internet hosting &c. &c., that's all on hold.
There is the faint impression that all this will shake out soon enough
for me and everyone to get back on track. That's why I'm not wrapping it
up yet, but really, working on a little C&P in my garage again and
having time to do my own projects, often sounds more tempting than all
the riches promised by a great economy.
Let me warn everyone who wants to grow; business requires a lot of
sacrifice, but if you can't find a way to do it without losing sleep,
without time to exercise and eat right, you're making a big mistake. As
business people we tend to be gamblers, and we gamble our health as well
as our money. Don't do it. If you find yourself working to 3 in the
morning (especially after the age of 35), forgetting to eat and take
walks, you're destroying yourself.
Gerald Lange wrote:
> Hi Jacob[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
> Well, it did not occur to me but as one correspondent put it, no one
> is going to tell you they are in trouble, at least, not in a public
> forum. Pointless post. Good to hear you are doing okay.
> --- In PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com, "Jacob Groth" <jacob@...> wrote:
>> Hi Gerald,
>> Business is booming here. Sorry if we don't fit into the media
> driven mold, but haven't sensed any recession on this end ..
>> Jacob Groth
>> El Dorado Hills, CA
>> ----- Original Message -----
>> From: Gerald Lange
>> To: PPLetterpress@yahoogroups.com
>> Tonight the US Government acknowledged we have been in a deep
>> recession since last December. Yet, many of the major internet
>> sellers, Sears, WalMart, eBay, etc, crashed tonight under heavy
>> "I was asked what I thought about the recession. I thought about it
>> and decided not to take part." Sam Walton - Founder of Wal-Mart
>> Thing here is this. No one is talking about this and it may or may not
>> be important but I would like to open it up to discussion.
>> I have not experienced a significant slow down, I have sensed it
>> everywhere, but things still seem viable in this sector. How are other
>> folks doing?
>> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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