On Riding the Chinatown Bus, and Considering Its True Cost

Mike - Totally off topic, but did the company you work for happen to have the initials PRN? If so, I'm guessing we know several people in common, which thrills me more than it probably should.

Posted on July 8, 2014 at 10:43 am 0

On Raising Kids to Trust People but Distrust Corporations

Josh, you are rapidly becoming one of favorite reasons to read The Billfold. Mostly because you are a fantastic writer, though the fact that we are the exact same age and I spent three long years in Hartford make me like you even more.

Posted on June 26, 2014 at 11:27 pm 4

On Is Air Conditioning Worth It?

I grew up in southern VA - not as hot as Texas, to be sure, but summers were sticky just the same. Our house didn't have central AC, but we had two window units: one in my parents' room, and one in the den. No unit in the kids' room, where I slept in a muggy top bunk just inches from the ceiling. (My parents very generously let us come camp out on the floor of their room on particularly hot nights. THANKS.) I am strongly in the pro-AC camp, even though last month's bill was $242. I'm in Atlanta, and having an infant in the house gives me the excuse I need to spend stupid money on energy costs. That's $8/day, and I'm guessing about 5 of those daily dollars are directly due to AC. It's a small price to pay for the three of us to live and sleep comfortably.

Posted on June 20, 2014 at 1:35 pm 0

On Goodbye, Little Green Couch

I read your post yesterday and followed the link to find your other contributions, and I can't imagine how I missed this one the first time around. I love this piece so, so much. Godspeed, LGC!

Posted on June 5, 2014 at 11:24 am 0

On When Roommates Figure Out How to Split the Rent

The triangle seems needlessly complicated. In a situation with three roommates, everyone should write down what they think is a fair price for the largest room; the highest bid gets this room. Repeat for the middle room. The person with the smallest room gets it for a price that's cheaper than what they think it's worth. Everyone wins!

Posted on April 29, 2014 at 9:10 am 2

On We Are Boarding Planes The Slowest Way Possible

@jennonthego Yes, this! Has anyone been on a plane within the last several years that boarded back-to-front??

Posted on April 28, 2014 at 7:53 pm 0

On What's ENTAILED In Making a Will? (Get it? "Entailed"?)

What I don't understand about the Schiavo case is why her parents had any say at all. Isn't your spouse automatically your Medical Power of Attorney? Relatedly - does anyone know if I still need to do a will if I want everything to go to my husband?

Posted on April 18, 2014 at 6:31 pm 0

On I Got a Better Job, But I'm Afraid My New Insurance Won't Cover a Scheduled Surgery

If you have to accept the job before verifying that BCBS will cover it, it's COBRA all the way. It's not cheap (I think the Aetna plan we were offered when my husband left his job would have been around $1200 for the family, or $450 for just him), but it's worth having until you can be sure the new plan will cover it. The law gives you 60 days after leaving your old job to decide whether you want to pay for COBRA, so that will give you some extra time to negotiate w BCBS. If you decide to do COBRA, your coverage and payments are retroactive to the date your policy ended - eg, if you leave April 10 and your policy runs out April 30, I believe you have until June 30 to decide whether to get COBRA. If you do, you'll owe them payments for May and June. I'm pretty sure (but not positive) that you can drop COBRA whenever, so worst case scenario, you have the surgery and drop it right after.

Posted on March 12, 2014 at 7:37 pm 0

On Can God Make It In Hollywood? Crunching the Numbers

Oh, God! is the best. John Denver is a grocery store manager handpicked by God (played by George Burns, natch) to take his message to the people. Everyone, including John’s wife Terri Garr, thinks he’s totally nuts. At FIRST. My Mom was a big fan of this movie, and we watched our VHS copy with some regularity. It’s *very* 70′s and my very next stop is Netflix to see if they have it.

Posted on February 24, 2014 at 5:06 pm 0

On Here Is Your Open Thread

Is Ask A Mortgage Person still happening? I remember the idea was floated a few weeks ago, but don't remember seeing a follow up.

Posted on February 21, 2014 at 3:29 pm 4