by Jordan Zakarin
Two reports released on Tuesday pegged consumer self confidence at a 16-year low, a precipitous slide stemming from a number of humiliating recent incidents. The breadth of the drop surprised experts, who, while expecting a brief foray into self-disgust, did not anticipate the level of self-loathing that now informs the public’s shattered ego.
The drop, which saw the personal confidence of American consumers fall from “mildly satisfied with self” to “absolute disgust with pathetic excuse for human,” was the largest since February 1992’s descent into “abject shame”. Several factors led to the dismal June confidence levels.
“This is an almost shocking level of pure venom directed at their sad, sad selves, though I cannot say it is entirely unjustified,” said Stephen Amadeus, a social scientist from Brandeis University. “It’s been a real rough patch, with blow after blow to the collective psyche, so I wouldn’t begrudge them this sinking feeling of unworthiness, of any shreds of self-belief blowing away with the latest indignity.”
American consumers have spent the past nine months red in the face as they struggle financially, unable to make rent and angering their much wealthier roommate, which was always an uncomfortable situation in the first place. This struggle has left a significant mark on the global economy, with consumer heads hanging in shame as the international community points fingers at the growing number of derelict Americans stinking up their pristine markets.
“Imagine, for a moment, you’re at a store, at the checkout counter, with what would be your most prized possession, your status symbol, sitting in the shopping cart,” Amadeus explained. “All of a sudden, you open your wallet to pay, and you simply don’t have enough to cover the cost, because you were swindled into paying more and more as you walked down the aisle. And then when you reach out for help, no one in the store can spot you some cash. So you walk out of the store, cart empty, ready to drive into a bridge abutment. You’d really feel like a jerkoff. That’s America right now. Feeling like a poor jerkoff.”
The embarrassment was amplified early in the month, when the long-ignored gas problem the American consumer was suffering from in relative privacy simmered over in the public eye. With news media from around the country filing reports on the event, the consumer was finally forced to acknowledge the issue and begin to attempt to reconcile and solve it, all in a very public forum.
The self-directed vitriol only increased as, not only did the problem worsen by the day, but self-proclaimed experts offered unsolicited advice regarding how to fix the problem, most with proposals that were dead on arrival. After years of ignoring the issue now leading to it being seemingly ingrained in the very being of the consumer’s life, hope has seemed lost of late, and more and more, the American consumer has stayed home, unable to cope with the gas issue.
Of course, that propensity to not leave the house has been assisted by downtrodden consumer’s unemployment, their job shipped to a Cambodian seven year old and/or an Indian grandmother working for old animal crackers and the promise of freedom from want.
This feeling of worthlessness has affected the consumers’ demeanor and ability to project a positive attitude in its interactions with others, and the world now turns a cold shoulder to its stuttering and stumbles. As the downward spiral continues, there is no telling how dejected the American people may feel.
Bloodied and clinging to any shreds of self-belief that remain, the consumer has signaled it may begin to seek out help, circling the classified advertisements for self-help groups that begin in November. For some onlookers, this may be the final opportunity for the depressed American consumer to right its own ship.