The Grapes of Wrath, 2008
After 30 years at a factory making truck parts, Jeffrey Evans was earning $14.55 an hour in what he called “one of the better-paying jobs in the area.”
Wearing a Harley-Davidson cap, a bittersweet reminder of crushed dreams, he recently described how astonished and betrayed he felt when the plant was shut down in August after a labor dispute. Despite sporadic construction work, Mr. Evans has seen his income reduced by half.
So he was astonished yet again to find himself, at age 49, selling off his cherished Harley and most of his apartment furniture and moving in with his mother.
Thus are we introduced to Jeff Evans in Erik Eckholm’s New York Times article. He calls it "Blue-Collar Jobs Disappear, Taking Families’ Way of Life Along" and the final ‘along’ strikes me as superfluous and possibly anti-Strunk’s Elements of Style.
But you damn sure can’t argue with the premise that thirty years to less than fifteen bucks an hour isn’t a journey for which you need a Harley.
Astonished indeed. Th…