Teach Me Money Management

What is money management and how do I obtain such a skill?

I’ve got those really fun parents, the kind who make me pay my phone bill and for my car insurance and gas and pretty much for any and everything I want. It would be a bigger issue if I didn’t have a job, but (thankfully) I do. And as much as I would love to spend every single dime on the most pointless things, I know it’s for the best that I’m getting a taste of the real world while I’ve still got my parents to fall back on. Sure, they wouldn’t be too happy with me if I didn’t give them the money for my phone and insurance every month, but if I couldn’t, they’d pay it for me, and at least I’d only be indebted to them, rather than some company who doesn’t actually care about my personal circumstances.

I think I’m doing really well, actually. I hand over the money for those bills weeks early almost every month. I’ve been licensed for over a year and I have yet to ask for gas money (although one time, they actually gave me a little bit just for the heck of it). I pay for almost everything on my own– shirts from my cross country meets, trips with my friends, clothes, random food runs, etc. I even paid to book a flight for myself to visit some family down in Florida next month.

So what’s the problem? The problem is that I basically break even every month. I have hardly anything saved up, and since I’m going to be moving out in nine months and paying rent and putting myself through college, I’m going to find myself in a pretty big pickle, much sooner than I’m prepared for. I either need to be making more money (though I barely have time for my job as it is, between sports and homework and sleep), or I need to learn how to save.

I walk into a store, and I almost always walk out with more things than I need. I’ve got plenty of clothes. I’ve got plenty of nail polish. I’ve got plenty of shoes. And yet, I can’t seem to stop buying more and more. It’s a serious problem, guys. I have a problem. I admit it. What’s the next step?

Teach me money management.

This is a cry for help.

Help.

HELP.

First Day

 

Well, it’s August. That means fall sports are really kicking off, everyone’s rushing to the mall to get their school clothes (already got that out of the way, bam!), and the July heat is finally starting to let up. All of those things are great! I love new clothes, I love that fall is just cool enough to wear a hoody and some jeans but not cold enough to need a coat, and I definitely love the way sports rally my classmates and their family together. Yeah, I’m one of those people that gets decked out in the school colors and paints my face, then stands in the student section for the duration of the game while simultaneously screaming so loud my voice is undoubtedly gone by the next morning. Well, I do that for some of the games. Other times I just don’t feel like leaving the house so I stay up and check twitter for the updates that half my school is sending every other second. Whatever works, you know.

But with all of that good August stuff comes bad August stuff. And I mean bad August stuff. Yep, you guessed it! The first day of school. Dun, dun, dun.

Don’t get me wrong–I get awesome grades and I’m one of those kids that’s loved by almost every teacher I have, mostly because I actually turn in the majority of my homework in a decent amount of time. Usually I don’t even mind going to classes. But this year is different than all the others. Why? Because your clever narrator here decided to schedule seven out of her eight classes as college prep courses and the eighth as art.What kind of idiot does that to herself? Me, apparently. And so, for the next nine months of my life, I’ll be balancing hellish amounts of homework, a job, sports, other extra-curriculars, and anything my family decides they want me along for. Sounds fun, eh?

Alright, alright. I’ll admit it: I’m excited. I’m excited to see everyone who I haven’t seen the last three months. I’m excited for everyone to see me, because I feel a thousand times more confident now than I did at the end of my sophomore year. I’m excited to show off my new clothes, especially the new jeans that I blew my entire first paycheck on. I’m excited for my first meet. I’m excited to be an upperclassman. I’m psyched for football games. I’m even excited for Homecoming, even though it’s really not that fun, since nobody actually dances. I won’t go into the details of what usually happens at dances, since I’m guessing the majority of my readers went to high school at a time where dancing actually occurred at dances, and I wouldn’t want to ruin any happy/innocent memories for you with the trash that happens now-a-days.

So here’s the bottom line: I’m excitedly-slash-dreadfully awaiting the new school year. I guess I’m leaning more towards the excited end of the spectrum, but my mind keeps flickering back to the fact that I’m not going to have any downtime whatsoever to enjoy my life until next summer. Oh well. It’s my own fault, really.

For now, I’ll ignore my impending doom and focus on the happy things, like seeing friends and attending football games. It’ll all work out for me. It always does.

 

‘Bout To Get Controversial

This post is going to be a serious rant, so if you think you’re going to get offended by a topic that’s currently very controversial, then leave. Right now. My purpose isn’t to offend, but rather to get my thoughts out. So if I see comments that bash what I have to say, I will block them as spam, because I’m warning you to leave NOW if you don’t want to read something that clashes with any opinions you may have. Now, then… on to my rant…

 

I’m sure you’ve all heard of that Chick-Fil-A thing that’s going on. You know, where the CEO of the company publicly declared that he was for the biblical ideas of marriage and that he’s against gay marriage? Yeah, that thing. Politicians are now using the stance of a fast food joint to gain public acceptance. Other fast food places are siding with Chic-Fil-A. I’ve even read that the company is financially supporting anti-gay organizations that go overseas to kill gays and are trying to make homosexuality illegal. Honestly, I’m not sure if that’s 100% true or not, but I don’t doubt it, especially with the way people are acting these days.

So what I want to know is this: how does gay marriage affect Chick-Fil-A? How does it affect all those politicians? How does it affect other companies? How does it affect you? How does it affect me? The answer is that it doesn’t.

I’m straight. I’ve never even considered the idea of dating or marrying anyone who wasn’t of the opposite gender, and therefore, I find it extremely difficult to understand how someone might be attracted to another of the same sex. Personally, I’m going to grow up and marry a guy that I fall in love with. Because of that, gay marriage doesn’t affect me in the least. What do I care if two people who are in love get married? I think everyone should have a chance at love, whether or not they go about it the conventional way. It does not affect me.

And guess what! Unless you’re gay, this issue doesn’t affect you either.

Here’s something that might surprise you after reading this: I’m a christian. There’s a shocker, ‘eh? Especially since I’m arguing against Chick-Fil-A’s supposed support of a biblical idea. But the thing is, I don’t believe that a true christian can support one part of the bible without supporting the rest. What Chic-Fil-A’s CEO failed to mention is that yes, gay marriage is a sin, but so is telling someone that they look pretty when you’re internally wondering if they’ve been hit by the ugly stick is equally sinful. In Jesus’ eyes, a sin is a sin. It doesn’t matter how big or little. It doesn’t matter if you’re gay or if you’ve told a white lie or if you’ve committed murder. It’s the exact same thing. And guess what? We’ve ALL sinned. Every single one of us. 

I’m sick of seeing people who claim to be christian post facebook statuses about how much they’re going to support Chick-Fil-A now. Grow up–this has nothing to do with any of you! The United States is putting entirely too much emphasis on the issue  of gay marriage right now, when in reality, it doesn’t affect a majority of us in any way, shape, or form. All it’s doing is drawing our country further and further apart, and over an immature issue nonetheless. What ever happened to the separation of church and state? We can’t pray in school, but politicians are allowed to publicly declare their support or contradiction with an issue that stems from a statement about christian beliefs? That just seems completely hypocritical to me.

Back to what I said about Chick-Fil-A’s support of organizations that are trying to make homosexuality illegal. That’s one of the absurd things I’ve ever heard. Teenagers can legally abort a child and never have to tell their parents about it, but apparently being attracted to someone of the same gender should be outlawed? I don’t think so. It’s absolutely ridiculous. I love my country, but I’m extremely disappointed in them right now. The United States needs to rethink their morals, because there’s a serious issue when killing a child is legal but being in love with someone that the bible says not to love isn’t allowed.

All I have to say is grow up, America. This issue doesn’t affect me, and it doesn’t affect thousands of others who are butting their heads into it. Don’t let this split apart our country even more. There’s plenty of bad things already. Don’t bring fast food into this, don’t bring politics into this, and don’t bring unaffected parties into this.

I neither support nor oppose gay marriage. Because as I’ve already said half a dozen times, it doesn’t affect me. What’s the use of having such a strong opinion when it has nothing to do with most of us? That’s completely immature.

I’ve already explained my stance on the biblical aspects–that a sin is a sin is a sin is a sin and we’re all guilty of sinning–but I want to mention a couple more things on that. 1) It doesn’t matter that we’ve sinned numerous times, Jesus will forgive us no matter what. All you have to do is ask for forgiveness. 2) Hate is a sin, too. And it’s something that the devil thrives on. So if you think that you’re some great christian because you’re hating on homosexuals, you need to get that idea out of your head right now. You’re no higher or more holy than the people who you’re going against.

One last thing before I hit publish and watch as the hateful comments stream in (even though I said NOT to read if you might be offended): I neither support nor oppose Chick-Fil-A. I’m disappointed that the nation has chosen sides over an issue such as this. There are bigger things than gay marriage that we need to be focused on, like the amount of homeless people there are or the fact that there are soldiers dying daily in the fight for our freedom. But I’m not going to take this out on Chick-Fil-A because that’s entirely immature, and one person is not at fault for this. Our entire nation is at fault because we’ve let an issue that shouldn’t be a national issue escalate to extremes.

Sorry, not sorry.

I’m not funny.

I have a sister that’s a year younger than me, and she’s seriously the funniest person I think I’ve ever met. She’s just so quick witted! In the matter of a second, she can come up with about six hilarious lines about one not-so-funny thing. And it never gets old! The girl could go on for hours about the same thing and have me cracking up the entire time.

The other day I was thinking about this, about how jealous I am that I’m the opposite of funny. It’s just unfair.

I mean, sure, I have better social skills than my sister. She thinks it’s perfectly acceptable to blurt out every single thought to anyone and everyone, no matter how offensive or embarrassing it may be. She thinks it’s okay to offer to smell someone’s armpits or feet for no reason. She thinks it’s okay to hold our baby sister in public, all the while mentioning in a loud voice that the child is hers. And so on. Me, I hold back to keep from offending people who are bigger than me and those who have the potential to cause me physical harm. I usually keep my nose and other body parts to myself. And I try not to earn judgmental glares from people who think my baby sister is my child. But whatever. 

I also keep better grades than my sister, who recently has decided that school is worthless and will get you nowhere in life. Do smarts outweigh being funny? I doubt it. 

 

Now don’t get me wrong, I’ve actually told a few jokes that got people laughing. The irony of those situations is that when I tell those funny jokes, I’m only repeating the jokes my sister has told me. Whenever I try to make up my own, I get blank stares and disappointed shakes of the head. People usually walk away, too.

I sometimes say something a little ditzy that gets some laughs, too. And since I’m a total klutz, I have a tendency to walk into walls and doors and poles and trip over my own feet. People laugh at klutz-happenings, also. But tripping and blurting out something dumb doesn’t make me funny. It just makes me look like an idiot.

 

So I guess what I’m getting at is that I’ve decided there’s nothing I can do about my lack of funny. I’ve accepted it and I’m moving on. Kind of. I still steal my sister’s jokes and repeat them to others, just so that they think I’m funny. Maybe one day I’ll gain some ability to tell jokes improv-style, but I doubt it. For now, I’ll stick to repeating jokes, tripping over my own feet, and asking why I can’t pull the push door open.

Later, taters!

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