On When Teens Commute to Part-time Jobs

@honey cowl I would say, kids who don't work aren't generally buying groceries -- if your parents don't expect you to work, they presumably don't expect you to come up with money to contribute toward your actual needs. For non-necessities (movie tickets, clothes you can't wear to school, snacks or meals out with your friends, etc.), the kid might get an allowance or ask their parents for money, or they might earn money in ways that don't really register as "a part-time job," like babysitting or mowing lawns. (Oh, it occurs to me that with groceries you might be thinking specifically of college students who aren't living with their parents. In that case, yeah, either they're getting money from their parents or their parents have paid for a meal plan and expect them to eat off of that and not need to buy groceries.)

Posted on March 31, 2015 at 5:56 pm 0

On When Teens Commute to Part-time Jobs

@Allison Maybe, but if the concern is the long commute, taking an after-school job near your school doesn't really change the fact that you're commuting a long way to do that job -- at least if you come straight home after school you can ride the school bus.

Posted on March 31, 2015 at 3:37 pm 0

On HR Is Not Your Friend, But It Can Be A Good Sparring Partner

I don't know, a lot of that article seems... kind of paranoid. They're right about HR, though! This is something that comes up a lot at Ask a Manager -- HR works for the company, not for the employees, and their job is about protecting the company's best interests. Sometimes that intersects with protecting the employees' best interests (like stopping sexual harassment before the company gets sued), but... sometimes it doesn't. And when it doesn't, HR is going to prioritize the company over the employee.

Posted on March 19, 2015 at 5:14 pm 0

On 13 Ways Daylight Saving Time Can Cost You Money

@goodtimesnoodlesalad I have a due-east morning commute and the sunrise had JUST gotten early enough that I wasn't driving straight into it. Now I get to go through the whole two weeks of hateful blindness again. THANKS, DAYLIGHT SAVING TIME.

Posted on March 9, 2015 at 10:40 pm 0

On Want a Free College Education? Show Up to Class and Don't Get Caught

@JaneA Yeah, this is the other thing I thought of. A diploma isn't just proof "that one has learned something"; it's proof that one has completed a specific, focused course of study in some subject, moving from intro-level survey courses to more specialized and in-depth work. This guy may have learned a lot -- I'd love to sit in on some intro classes in areas I'm interested in, and at least in some areas, I'm sure I could learn a lot even if all I did was listen to the lectures and do some reading/work through the end-of-chapter problems on my own -- but I doubt he's ended up with anything that could really be described as equivalent to a college degree.

Posted on March 9, 2015 at 5:30 pm 0

On Job Of The Day: Professional Shears Sharpener

Makes sense -- when I worked at a fabric store, we had a scissor sharpener who would come by occasionally. Of course, we as front-line employees using the scissors had no power to call them in, so the scissors-sharpening schedule was based on "How often is management willing to pay for it?" rather than "How often do the scissors become dull and need sharpening?" I know hairstylists are often independent contractors renting their salon space; I wonder how the shear-sharpening-scheduling works in that situation, and how it's paid for.

Posted on March 2, 2015 at 5:40 pm 0

On One Ring To Rule Them All ... And Bind Them

I agree with you -- I think his worries are coming from the perspective that his friends and family wouldn't have given him money unless they thought he had no savings at all, when they'd probably say, no, they figured he had some savings, but they wanted to protect him from having to use all of that money so he'd come out of this crisis still having a little bit of a cushion. (Of course, that means I also kind of agree with Carolyn Hax that maybe he should prioritize keeping some of that money as a financial cushion over buying the ring of his dreams...)

Posted on February 25, 2015 at 6:04 pm 0

On Billfold Housing Survey Results: Are You a Millennial?

@ronswansonluva Maybe separate the "concerns" question from the "traits" question, then. But yes, I do think there are some positive/neutral traits associated with Millennials -- you do hear a fair amount about us being "digital natives" and quick to adopt and learn new technologies, and the more serious articles about "How to work with your Millennial employees" generally include some positives (optimistic, engaged/passionate, open-minded, etc.). I think they get less attention partly because "Kids These Days Not That Bad, Actually" doesn't make much of a headline and partly because, when they are mentioned, they don't stir up as much fuss (fewer rebuttals along the lines of "HEY, the nerve of you jerks, assuming I'm optimistic and open-minded just because of my age!"), but they are out there. Anyway, part of what I'd be interested in is the idea that a lot of the negative "Millennial" traits are really just traits of people who are new to the adult/working world; on the "traits" question, it's the responses of people from other generations that would be most interesting to me. On the "concerns" or "experiences" question, I'd be more interested in the responses of people who age-wise are identified as Millennials; I've seen some interesting debates about how the cultural idea of the "Millennial experience" is really more like "the affluent white Millennial experience," and I'd be interested to see how many of us actually do consider issues like unpaid internships and student loans to be among the bigger concerns in our lives.

Posted on February 25, 2015 at 2:31 pm 0

On Billfold Housing Survey Results: Are You a Millennial?

I'd also really be interested in the question "Whether you were born after 1980 or not, do you identify with 'Millennial' concerns and traits as presented in the media?" (With response options like "Yes, they sound like me"; "Sort of, they sound like me when I was younger"; "No, not at all"; "I don't read articles about Millennials so I have no idea"; etc.)

Posted on February 25, 2015 at 12:51 pm 0

On Keeping the Junk

(Can you embed pictures here? LET'S FIND OUT.)

Posted on February 25, 2015 at 8:18 am 2