In reality, the only job most Alabamians truly worry about is their own or their spouse’s. Is it stable? And what does it pay? Are they getting raises, or are pay cuts eating away at their family’s bottom line? Fretting over the latest labor statistics is best left for the wonkish economists.

A few weeks back, Janet Tyson Prosser, proprietor of the area’s only specialty wine store, Tyson Fine Wines and Things in Anniston, called me to make an immediate command performance at her shop on what was otherwise a boring morning spent with crippling writer’s block.