... and where I've been that I haven't been blogging.
As some of you may know, I'm currently "between jobs." I'm learning that means "laid off by a shrinking company, and competing with countless others just like me for the remaining scraps." For me, the econom y hasn't so much experienced a recession as outright imploded.
Tampa Bay was never a great leader in the technology sector, where I'm most at home. But now, with real estate and tourism (two of the largest moneymakers here) essentially gone, and finance (a third) in disarray, not only is there next to no opportunity but the resources necessary for independent VC-funded enterprises are mostly gone as well. In turn, the historically low compensation rates here make effective competition for employment elsewhere difficult: as one recruiter mentioned to me, it's difficult to present a candidate for a position that pays double that candidate's last one regardless of how well that person's skills match the vacancy.
At present, my job search is spanning the entire Atlantic seaboard. The best responses, in fact, have until the last week or so come from the Carolinas and the Northeast. I'm averaging 25-70 resumes a day, so far with just a handful of phone calls, and just four in-person interviews to date.
To add insult to injury, I'm learning just how false the impressions of Floridian economical living are. While researching residences elsewhere I found a lovely loft-style flat in a Northeastern state. This unit, marginally larger than my own and not substantially less expensive, is assessed roughly the same property taxes as my place - and mine is assessed half the usual value because of its particular status. The inevitable conclusion is that the tax rates in Florida are substantially higher than their equivalent in states denounced for their "high taxes." It's high time that those assumptions were revisited - and quite possibly refuted generally as my specific example leads me to think likely.