It’s a wrap: the last installment of “Transitioned,” a WPLN series about Tennesseans adapting to an economy in flux, aired on Summer Solstice morning. Here are the people who shared their stories:
(Click the photo or title to visit each WPLN story, or click here for all of them.)
Rachel Agee: Nobody Can Survive Without Backup
Rachel Agee lost her job 2 years ago at an employment law firm. Now she’s facing foreclosure. She says it’s her love of theatre and the help of friends and family that see her through the darkest days.
“My mother’s always saying, ‘I’m never gonna have my child living in the mission! You’ll always have a place to live.'” -Agee
David Mead: Be More Than Just One Thing
Singer-songwriter David Mead hit the big-label lottery in the late 90s. Then the music industry got squeezed, and he lost his contract. He’s had to become a renaissance man: carpenter, solo artist, and multifaceted performer.
” I’m in a completely different tax bracket than I was when I was a much younger man.” -Mead
Ann Jetton: Fear Not
Two years ago, Ann Jetton lost her job. She says unemployment—the state of being, and the checks—have helped her make a new life plan: to find work that serves others.
“If I lose everything tomorrow, I’ll still be me.” -Jetton
Rob Wagner: Get Proactive
Real-estate agent Rob Wagner had to downsize his lifestyle and take on a second job after the bottom dropped out of the real estate market. He feels lucky to have two jobs and a loft in a lovely old drugstore.
“I didn’t ever think I would need a second job. I thought I would retire a wealthy person.” -Wagner
Cece DuBois: Incurable Joy
At 64, artist, songwriter, and designer Cece DuBois took a job at a grocery store to make ends meet. But she still finds creative work to do– namely, infecting others with her joie de vivre.
“I think we have a job on this planet to infect each other with incurable joy. We can be joyful and own nothing.” -DuBois
Alec Winter: Older Ways of Doing Things
When the housing bubble burst, building contractor Alec Winter discovered a fallback: an older, simpler way of living that helped him get through his leanest year yet.
“I have a lot less hair on my head this year than I did last year. My pants won’t hold any more patches.” -Winter
Heidi Ross: Cake. On Sticks.
A one-two punch of sagging music industry and recession left photographer Heidi Ross with a great portfolio, but not such a great income. So she started making cake. On sticks.
“People love cake! I don’t have to convince anybody. It sells itself.” -Ross
Alison Prestwood: Keeping My Calluses
Bass sideman Alison Prestwood practiced hard to perfect her craft, and followed her musical ambitions to Nashville in the early 90s. But when Music Row’s fortunes flagged, she learned a new instrument: the law.
“It reminds me of being a little girl, playing guitar, playing bass, and, you know, the world’s in front of you.” -Prestwood