…and the mind reels at this:Twice a week, Kathleen Kielbasa drives her 1997 Jeep Cherokee from Algonquin to Des Plaines to visit her elderly mother, helping her with shopping and other chores.Now, as gas prices have reached $3 a gallon in some parts of Chicago, Kielbasa will cut her visits to once a week."My 85-year-old mother will not be happy, but I just can't afford it," she said as she loaded her SUV with items bought for her mom at a Rolling Meadows Wal-Mart. Pull out the smallest violins you have, kids, and play a slow, sorrowful dirge for the woes of Kathleen Kielbasa.
Brian Cook was an editor at In These Times from 2003 to 2009. He now works on the editorial staff of Playboy magazine.