Stupid Is as Stupid Does. Stupid Tax.

I’m swearing off my checkcard. And here’s a taste of how much being in debt sucks. For us at least. (sorry, I know that’s not a nice word but i’m … mad. at myself. And I’ve been crying, so cut me some slack.)

We have one last debt that we’re working to pay off. This month we were cutting it a little close, so when the ‘debt’ check cleared, it didn’t quite clear – enough. So the bank covered it and charged us over $200 for that little favor. That’s what it amounted to anyway. It’s always nice when a check to your mom doesn’t bounce. But then the bank charges you (excessively) for it, it’s like a wink and a muttered “Dont mention it.” Jerks.

I called the bank and apologized and told them how we planned to correct the problem. As it turns out, the fine print states that each transaction requiring overdraft also gets a $35 fee pinned on it. So…quite a few transactions took place on Monday evidently. Their solution was very easy. They offered me a credit card for overdraft purposes. How thoughtful of them. Me getting a credit card is about as likely to happen as a pink elephant walking through my front door and making me breakfast.

Yeah, we did stupid tax. Evidently I am not mature enough to have a check card in my wallet. (In case you’re wondering, I lost all my pride in privacy with money matters when we took FPU two years ago, although I suspect my husband wishes I would find it again. Rapido.) I had to lay my fears & worries all down to be able to recieve help. I was broken. I don’t assume everyone does that, but we did – and it changed our lives in many ways. Besides, I’ve learned from others mistakes and have appreciated their honesty for my benefit.

Quite obviously, I’m still learning. And I should make note to read the fine print. And use cash only. And resist a bargain at the mall and a quick lunch there too if it means using my check card. The pizza alone at Sbarro cost us $46.44 after tax, tag & title. And now, indigestion 3 days later. Let’s not even talk about the fabulous deals I got on ebay this weekend – now each of them is $35 more than I had planned. And the gasoline? Trust me, it was more than $3 a gallon.

On Sunday, the message at church was about celebration. Brian summed it up for me by saying it was about where you’ve been and how you’ve come through it – and how you have to celebrate it! Focus on the good!

I’m having to make a very conscious effort to do that this afternoon. My best attempt looks like this: In the past year and 11 months, Brian & I have paid off just over $87,500 in personal debt. Not easy. Not fun. We have worked like maniacs, sacrificed sleep among many other things, and sold stuff we had never considered parting ways with. There was a lot of blood (just ask BDub, it was his), sweat & tears in getting to this point. But….even more in celebration (of tears anyway). And if you know me, you know I cry big ‘ole tears when I’m happy.

Somehow looking at that makes the $200 in stupid tax (still stupid) but sting a little less, and motivate a lot more.

If anyone has a few folding tables we can borrow for our garage sale next Saturday, we would be greatly appreciative! It’ll be a doozy of a sale hopefully to exceed the amount of stupid we’ve just done!

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~ by hthr on July 26, 2007.

2 Responses to “Stupid Is as Stupid Does. Stupid Tax.”

  1. It happens to the best of us. You guys have come a long way, and I for one am very proud of you. And yes, we have tables you can borrow.

  2. Giiiiirrrrlllll, been there done that, we all have. Good “line” though. And FYI – your bank should offer you overdraft (which is actually their generous “loan” however you can have that overdraft acct. attached to your savings, ex: our “thousand dollars in the bank” is in a little savings acct. that gets no interest at the bank. But it has come in handy for the rare blurp like this. I/O charging you for overdrawing it pulls from your overdraft/or savings first at no charge & no mess.

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