Ben Gittelson compares the sour note he hit while playing his violin to our economy: it was hard work and tears that got him back to making music.
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I cried. I still feel a little ashamed when I remember it- big, fat, salty, tears sliding down my face during the middle of my violin lesson only three years ago. Why? Because of one little e-flat that wasn’t quite in tune. For the better part of an hour, my teacher made me play it over and over and over again until it was just right. But in spite of all the crying and whimpering, I eventually walked out of that lesson with a dry face and a perfect e-flat.
Sure, a musical note might not be quite as important as a recession, but perhaps America could take a bit of advice from my violin teacher. I wonder if it’s time for America to stop taking the easy way out and do a little bit of crying.
It’s going to take more than a quick fix — more than bailouts and economic stimulus packages — to solve this problem. What we really need some is painful self-reflection, time, and effort, and maybe even a few tears. Maybe we need to let some businesses fail, and let the stock market fall, before things can truly get better.
I can only imagine how different America’s economy would look today if we had taken the time to fix that out-of-tune e-flat years ago…before it developed into a mess.