New joke making the rounds:

Q: Why are there so many hippies in Floyd County?

A: They heard there’s no work here.

God, you know times are bad when hippie jokes make a comeback.

Hear an increasing amount of talk lately about the lack of work and/or the lack of income. The problem, of course, is nationwide. Local artists who travel to out-of-town shows say crowds and sales are down. Local businesses report more lookers than buyers. Musicians say paying gigs are fewer.

We’ve seen a shift in Floyd: Less talk about living and more about making a living.

Let’s have a show of hands: How many came here to make money?

How many came here because of the lifestyle?

Lifestyle still wins but he margin is shrinking.

Had a salesman walk into the studio the other day and open the conversation with "let me maximize your income potential."

Looked up from my magazine and answered: "Let me maximize your life expectancy. Leave before I get up out of this chair."

We see more and more emphasis on turning Floyd into a mini-mecca for "business opportunity." We’re overrun with those who want to "network." They hand out business cards to everyone they meet and they talk about marketing and business plans and "maximizing your potential" until you want to toss your cookies all over their designer tennis shoes.

Floyd doesn’t need more seminars on "turning your business into a success." Discussions on organic gardening or alternative engery would better serve foks around here. Most who come here are not the "hippies" who show up more in jokes than on the town streets. Most are those who made their lives an economic success somewhere else and came to Floyd to enjoy the benefits of those labors. They came here to escape the business cards, the "networking" socials, the sales pitches and the eternal chase for the almighty dollar.

Don’t let the magic that is Floyd get lost under the onslaught of those who measure success in financial terms and confuse making a living with just living your life and making the most of it.