We can't turn on the TV or radio without hearing stories of financial doom. Newspapers, magazines, and the Internet are all filled with accounts of economic disaster. Twenty Four At Heart is not a political blog, nor is it a very serious blog. This isn't the format to discuss how, or why, or whose fault it is. Instead, I have a different question for you today.
How the hell are all of you coping? Are you drinking more to take your mind off of it? Are you joining Swinger's clubs to occupy your time with cheap entertainment? Have you found ways to cut down on costs for yourself or your family? Are you stressed out over how it is affecting your life or future?
I tried to save some money yesterday. It didn't work out too well. Basically, because I am a complete and total moron.
PR has a very lengthy baseball practice every Wednesday evening. We live pretty far away from the field location. We have to leave around 5:00 p.m and he doesn't get back home until 9:00 p.m. From the mom perspective, it sucks. It's hard to get through his homework schedule. And when does he eat dinner? At 4:30 in the afternoon? Or 9:30 at night? Did I mention it sucks?
Wednesday is often the night we eat out or grab take-out while running around all over the place. We're all going in different directions at different times and it's chaotic. I decided yesterday I would start being wiser, and smarter, and more frugal.
On my way home from PT I stopped into the grocery store and picked up a few things for dinner. Instead of eating on the run, I was going to cook a nice, economical, dinner and make it work even with our insane schedule.
I arrived home and heard the phone ringing. I ran into the house from the garage to answer the phone. Three hours later I went to pick PR up from school. I heard a bag shift in the back of my SUV and thought, "What's back there?" Then I said, "Oh shit!" really loud. It was 96 degrees here yesterday afternoon. My food? It was already cooked, but not quite the way I planned. My groceries were headed straight for the trash.
In all my 24 years, I have never, ever, forgotten groceries in the car before. I got that phone call and the memory of having ever bought them disappeared from my brain. The thing about me? I don't keep my stupidity to myself. No, I feel the immediate need to share my stupidity with other people.
I'm a very open person.
I promptly called Briefcase at work. The moment he said, "Hello?" I said, "I'm a moron." I didn't say hello, I didn't ask how his day was. Briefcase didn't miss a beat. That's the wonderful thing about being married to me. Nothing in the entire world surprises or fazes him in the least anymore. Isn't it great I've done that to for him?
"Hmmm," he said.
"I tried to save money today," I told him.
"Oh," he answered sounding concerned. I think he was visualizing the last time I saved money by purchasing a set of new, expensive, kitchen knives. Which he cut himself on. And hates.
"I bought groceries to make dinner before practice and then I let the groceries cook themselves in the back of the car this afternoon."
Can you believe he actually sounded relieved? As in, "Is that all it is this time?"
He said, "Oh, so we're eating out?"
"I'm a moron," I repeated for emphasis. (Just in case he questioned that fact the first time I announced it.)
"OK, well, I'll be home early to take PR to practice."
Notice he didn't say, "Yes, you are a moron."
Also notice, he didn't say, "No, you're not a moron."
He navigates the absurdity of his wife quite competently at times.
My attempt at saving money, of course, ended up costing us more money than if I had done nothing. What are you doing these days to cut down on costs? Are you having any success? Or like me, maybe a few failures?