taking the show on the road

I am not good at saving–in fact, I’m kind of terrible at it. Because why save money when you can spend it on shiny things like shoes and a new face from a Brazilian plastic surgeon? I thought that would be a good thing, though: it takes me many, many decades to slowly pile up money into an amount that could be considered more than pocket change, so while I saved,I would have plenty of time to think. I’ve been wanting a car for awhile, considering it, waffling over the possibility of maybe getting one. Maybe? Perhaps. Could be. Don’t question me!

This was my great plan, after a long time of dithering: if I took my time in saving up for a car, then I wouldn’t have to make a decision right away. If I decided, at the end of the 39 and 1/2 years it would take me to amass a significant amount of cash (this is, you understand, on top of the cash I automatically amass in order to pay my Frightening Freelance Taxes), then I would have so much time to think about things. At the end of it, if I decided that I could not, in fact, bring myself to become a Car Owner, then I would have a big pile of cash with which to buy at least three new faces in Rio! Maybe even one for every occasion.

What happened was that I turned out to be surprisingly good and remarkably disciplined in the act of saving up money, I got a big stack of freelance work that paid out in a timely manner and handsomely, and I took a contract position on top of that and suddenly, here is money! Here is me going oh my god, too much money. I will put it over here and not think about it la la la. In mid-November, I was a lucky girl with enough money to buy a pretty nice used car without going into debt.

At the end of November, I was a moron without health insurance (private companies seem to not want to cover WLS patients; why, oh why didn’t I spend the outrageous sums for catastrophic insurance?), and my hospital bill cleaned me right the hell out. I was very, very lucky to have enough money to cover the majority of my bill, but in a small way, that was also a terrible thing, because in mid-November is when I had decided yes, I need a car. It is winter here in Utah, and it hurts to bicycle in the winter, even when you’re wearing a hat. It is not smart to bicycle through the snow and the ice. It is deeply unpleasant to wait for a bus in the very goddamn cold. It is not fun to have to ask your exhausted, overworked boyfriend if he could please take you to run this five-page list of errands, please. It is not fun to feel like you are dependent on other people–it is miles and acres and light-years better to be independent and self-sufficient. It makes me sad that self-sufficiency includes a vehicle, but that is how it goes sometimes, in some places. And that is how I need to roll.

So now here I am, poor again, except this time I have got my mind made up and that is a dangerous proposition. When I decide I want something, it is very, very difficult to hold me back. Common sense: I have not got it. A sense of proportion is entirely absent; self control was never in the building. Resolved: I need a car. Even better, I want one. The best: I don’t think I can make myself wait through another six months to a year of saving, and I don’t think I am going to get bailed out with magical freelance money out of the sky, and I am going to have to save anyway for the remainder of the hospital bill that’s winging its way to me. I am considering financing–a car payment! This is what I get after trying to be financially prudent? See if I ever try to be fiscally responsible ever again.

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