Losing and Gaining In The New Economy

Yesterday I walked down 28th Street in the flower district.  Whenever I’m there, it reminds of the day Domino, the Conde Nast magazine I worked for closed down.

Prior to that, my relationship to that street had been to pick up the phone and order flowers – it didn’t really matter how much I spent – S400, $800, $1200 -because it was for a one-day photo shoot and then they’d get tossed. (We were all too exhausted to take them home.)

For some reason, there was always this tremendous rush to get the flowers and you were always afraid you wouldn’t be able to find exactly what the creative director was looking for – white anemones with dark brown centers, velvet red peonies.  The real job was to make the florist you were calling know that it had to be that exact flower (no substitutions) and it had to get there really, really, really fast; ahead of everyone else’s order.  Anything else and the shit would hit the fan.

I was in the area because I was on my way to lunch with two old friends from the magazine.  One was writing freelance articles (for much less money) while learning to do Buddhist hospice, and the other was helping out her friend, a jeweler.

Life isn’t secure or financially easy for any of us, but I realized we had all gained something since our time at Domino – we weren’t looking at our watches anymore. We had a different sense of time, a sense of spaciousness in the moment, and pleasure in doing things that were not even considered worth mentioning at our old jobs – like looking forward to the arrival of the spring pansies in the flower district, just to say hello to their sweet little faces after lunch was the sweetest dessert.

To be ‘in the moment,’ as they say, involves letting the moments themselves dictate what will happen.  You can’t have it the other way around.  Maybe that is why saddhus, swamis and sages gave up the money thing.  You can’t do them simultaneously.

–Cynthia Kling is the editor of YogaCity NYC

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