One Year Closer to the ‘R’ Word

April is the month of my birth, and I am amused every year by the corporations that have that date on file and send me notes. Some are just discount offers, like the pop-up card above sent to me by West Elm where I bought some sheets a few months ago.

But now, I’m getting to that age where some of these corporations remind me that I am getting one year closer to my death and they hope I’ve been preparing! Here is, for example, a note from Allstate, where I buy my renters insurance:

We did want to let you know though, that as you get older Life Insurance becomes more expensive. So, if you were planning on looking into a policy, it will be cheaper before your birthday.

How helpful! But I’m already covered under term insurance for now, thanks.

And here’s a special birthday message from my 401(k) provider:

The ACA and My Obstetrician and Me

So as previously mentioned I am growing increasingly pregnant with each passing day, and today I had an appointment with my OB-GYN. On the agenda for this morning was first to chug 10 oz. of a drink called Glucola™, which is basically like drinking flat orange drink except twice as sugary (Um, I was kind of into it) that does weird things to your blood sugar and screens you for gestational diabetes. Second on the agenda, aside from peeing in a cup, getting my blood pressure taken, and hearing baby's heartbeat, was for me to corner my OB and try to get her to give me an honest answer about her practice's plans to drop my newly begotten insurance plan.

The Pre-Departure Costs of Travelling By Cargo Ship (A Note to Self)

The cost of travel via cargo ship.

Two More Reasons to Feel Awkward About Using Uber

Who here loves Uber and simultaneously feels badly about loving Uber?

I know it’s not just me. Whenever I talk about Uber with friends, it seems like we start off all saying the same thing: “Yeah, Uber is so great! It’s so much better than taxis!” and then immediately switch into “Except for the surge pricing… and I’m not sure how the insurance piece works… and I heard they still haven’t worked out the regulation thing…”

The trouble with Uber is that the parts of the service that we love—fast, clean cars! getting to book rides and pay from our smartphones!—are all on the surface, and the parts that we probably wouldn’t love if we thought about them are hidden from our view.

So here are two more reasons to feel awkward about using Uber:

1. Drivers are experiencing pay cuts

On Tuesday, September 2, Los Angeles Uber drivers assembled in North Hollywood to protest pay cuts. CBS Los Angeles quoted one Uber driver as saying “I’ve experienced four cuts since I started. It was $2.50 a mile when I started a year-and-a-half ago, and now we are at $1.10 a mile. You can’t make a living off of that.”

How My State’s Health Exchange Website Problems Have Affected Me

I have never gone a day in my life without health insurance, but it is looking increasingly likely that I will miss the December 23 open enrollment deadline and be uninsured as of January 1.

Making the Best of What I’ve Got

In 2012, I learned a lot more about value than I did about money—the value of my family, the value of friendship, and the value of making the best of what you've got.

Why We Are Moving To Canada This Week

This should go well. Let’s talk about health insurance.

Man With Cancer Fights for Health Insurance

Sergio Branco, a 33-year-old father of three, discovered that he had leukemia just before he was fired from his job. Thankfully, he could treat his cancer by extending his health insurance coverage through COBRA, which would cost him $518.26 per month. His wife sent in a check for $518. Without notifying the family that they still owed 26 cents, Sergio Branco's health insurance was terminated. Although the Broncos were still ahead of their payment deadline, they were told they could no longer make any payments. The contacted a lawyer. The Department of Labor had to get involved. The amount of effort it took for a man dying of cancer to maintain his health insurance policy was absurd.

Do You Have Health Insurance? Y/N

Do you have health insurance?