So I'm sitting in the bagel shop on Saturday morning having my usual breakfast and coffee, when a woman approaches me with a sunny smile and says, "I work at Countrywide and we watch you all the time!" I grimaced, thinking she must hate me. Instead, she said, "Are you OK?" I said, "Yes I'm fine, but, more importantly, how are you?" "Great!" She proceeded to tell me that everyone on the inside knows Countrywide is going to be fine after "we get through this first crisis."
As for why CEO Angelo Mozilo hadn't yet spoken publicly since the crisis began, she said, "Well, I'm not sure why he isn't talking. Maybe it's just the classy thing to do." She could not have been more upbeat and pleasant. She mirrored the friendly attitude of many Countrywide employees who passed by me on their way to lunch last week ("we're watching you on TV inside!"). Also, they drive really nice cars. I've never seen so many BMWs and Mercedes and Porsches in one corporate headquarters before.