The Story of Javabird

The good old days.

Ain’t Life Grand

 

Once upon a time, in a land all too close to home, there lived a brave little duck known to all his friends as Javabird.  Now, Javabird was a successful duck.   From the Academy of Duck Smarts he went straight into a career as a birdhouse developer. For awhile, things were going great guns. Every time he built a new birdhouse, some Tom, Peep or Birdie would come take a look and snatch it up on the spot. Money was so easy to get at the bank; Javabird’s buyers could always find a new way to qualify for a mortgage. And it wasn’t like Javabird was giving the homes away, either.  Oh, yeah, baby, life was grand, indeed!  Javabird owned a beautiful birdhouse himself, plus a bird cottage at the beach, a yacht, three cars, two motorcycles and every techno-gizmo he could lay his hands on.  Of course all that took money…lots of it, but as long as the buyers kept coming, things just got better and better.  That is, until one day…

 

The Bottom Fell Out

 

One sunny day as he was out for a drive, JB turned on his car radio.  To his horror, the DJ was saying the stock market was gyrating like a yo-yo.  Now, since every good duck learned to sock away a few bucks from time to time JB had lots of money tied up in the market.  In fact, he was only copying his Grandpa Duck’s example, for Grandpa made a small fortune investing in the market.  Worried, though not yet panicked, JB raced home and jumped on the internet.  “Oh, no,” he groaned as he saw every one of his favorite stocks taking a monster hit.  “I’ve lost half my entire fortune!”

 

I Can’t Let It Get To Me

 

It took JB four trips to the bar, a couple dozen aspirin and three days to get over his loss, but in the end he decided the stock market was fickle and might go back up.  True, all the indices were still jumping around like pogo sticks, but if he just hung in there they had to go back up.  They did, didn’t they?  Poor JB.  His nerves only carried him another day before he bailed and wouldn’t you know it…that’s exactly when all his stocks went rocketing back up.

 

Hey, What’s Going On?

 

JB was thoroughly bummed, until a week later the markets took an even bigger dive.  “Whew!” he thought.  At least, I escaped that one.  “Hah!  The poor suckers who stayed in must really be taking a bird bath.”  Then he noticed something else.  It wasn’t obvious at first, but when he checked on his weekly sales figures he realized that no one was buying his birdhouses.  Sales had gone flat-all the way from 100 homes a week down to zero!  It got even worse when his banker called the next month.  “What do you mean I’ve overdrawn my account?  How is that possible?  That can’t be possible!  What do you mean you’re pulling my line of credit?  How will I keep my business going without credit?”

 

And Even Worse

 

JB pleaded with his banker. He begged him to carry him just a few more weeks.  He felt certain things had to change soon.  Poor JB.  That’s when his wife called with even more bad news.  “I’m at the hospital,” she explained.  “Mom had a heart attack right after you and I were served papers.  They’re suing to foreclose on the house.”  “Our house?” JB gulped.   “They’re taking our house?”  He could picture it now…this was going to be a very long, cold winter.

 

 

On To New Adventures

 

It was a dark and dreary winter, indeed.  Our old pal Javabird lost all the rest of his worldly possessions in one of the worst winters on record.  Torrential rain and windstorms pounded him day after day, but he did his best to keep up his spirits and took great comfort in the companionship of his wife who stuck by his side in spite of all their troubles.  One rainy day while scrounging for grub in some thoroughly disgusting muck, JB was suddenly struck by an idea.

 

“Aha!” he cried.  “I have it!  I know what I can do next.  Why I bet there are hundreds or even thousands of others like me who are in the same situation.  I’ll start a blog.  I’ll share my experiences and get my readers to share theirs with me.  If we combine forces, I know we can overcome this.  I can give tips on saving, things I learned about investments, how to eat on a budget, how to do more with less.  Oh, wait!  I’ll need a philosophy, too…yes, I’ve got it:  We’ll call it, “The Principles of Zero-Based Living.”  Why the possibilities are endless!”  And that, my dear friends, is the first chapter in the story of Javabird.  Stay tuned…there’s more to come.

 

-JB

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