Sunday, July 12, 2015

Day 94: When What You Hate Hates Back

I hate errands with a passion. Pretty much all of them. Grocery shopping, dropping off dry cleaning, and especially going to the post office. That's the death nell.

A little over two months ago I wrote about how we got a new car. New cars are great, but there are all the little payments that need to be made afterward. These payments aren't the car payment for us; these are all the wonderful taxes we have to pay. I think there's a state tax, but for sure a county tax and, because we live in Chicago, a city tax. Do you know what this tax is? It's called the Wheel Tax and apparently it's used to pay for the maintenance and repair of all of those sparkly, smooth roads you drive on in Chicago. And get this – the Wheel Tax has been in existence since 1908. I guess they had to slap city parking stickers on horse and buggy carriages.

Anyway, I neglected to buy this sticker. We didn't have it on our car before this one and I didn't have it for this one. I always thought the process was too much work. Again, I hate errands like these. Well, fast forward to yesterday and I come to find that we got a ticket on our car for $200 for not having this super tiny sticker! Unlike parking tickets, this one isn't really disputable. I just owe it to my hatred of running errands.

So I bought the sticker today. Tacked on that was an additional $60 late fee for not buying it within 30 days of when I bought the car. All in all, not getting the original sticker at about $85 is now costing me close to $350!

I think a lot of folk our age, especially people without kids, hate cooking. There's just something about the thought of combining all of these horrific activities into one – figuring out what you want to cook, making a grocery list, going to the grocery store, unloading the groceries, unpacking the groceries, following a recipe and cooking the food. For what? So that one, maaaayyybe two people can eat what is most likely a mediocre representation of the actual recipe.

No. It ain't gonna happen.

So either your rock out on the cheap, like representing ramen or cereal for every meal, getting fancy every now and then with a sandwich or pasta. Or you go out. You hit up Mickey D's or Jimmy Johns sometimes, but more often it's going out with the collective group of friends who are avoiding making a meal just like you. Why not throw in a few drinks too as you talk about how busy life is and there's no time to do anything for yourself, like cooking a meal? Before you know it, you're dropping $10, $20, $40 bones a couple nights a week. Then, because of age and me, you start budgeting only to realize that your hatred of cooking costs you $400-$800 a month.

What do you hate like this? What do you hate doing, avoid at all costs, only to end up having it kill your finances later?

Here's what I've learned that I want to pass on. There are necessary evils in this world that all of us hate. What do you do with them? Too often I straight up avoid them and they always end up costing me so much more time and money in the end. I've learned before and hope to have learned for the last that these always need to be tackled first.

Don't avoid them. Finish them first so that you can do what you really want to do.

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