On Buddy and the Disappearing Social Media Job

Sounds like Buddy finally learned how to use social media... But I totally feel your pain; I occasionally do freelance projects for small legal and accounting firms who have stubbornly refused to become educated about the social media marketplace, specifically about the costs involved. So I'll get these requests for a social media plan AND a website update with a lavish $1500 budget attached. When I inform them this isn't possible, I always get the "can't you just find some hungry intern on Craigslist" to do it? Uh, maybe in 1997, but not now, pal.

Posted on October 17, 2012 at 3:27 pm 0

On Justifications Used to Buy Things I Don't Really Need, But Do Really Really Want

@Pumpkin Totally. Somehow no occasion in my current life is ever worthy of my expensive stuff. Plus, If Kate Middleton wants to meet for drinks one night, I really need to be ready.

Posted on October 11, 2012 at 4:27 pm 0

On The Trouble with Friends in High Places

@deepomega Mercifully, in MY group of friends, picking up the tab for the entire table (and then secretly expensing it as "client development") is the way people show they're making $$$. This sort of showing off I can live with.

Posted on October 1, 2012 at 2:42 pm 0

On Can You Ever Assume That Someone Else Will Pay? (With Fingers Crossed )

This is SUCH a relevant topic to my life right now. Recently I've been invited to big group dinners at restaurants that are way too expensive for me. But many of the people attending could be very helpful to my career, and its likely I won't have another opportunity to get in their face. In these situations,I just figure out what else in my budget I can cut, such as, say, ditching a week of good lunches for six days of Trader Joes $1.99 chile.

Posted on September 14, 2012 at 7:43 pm 0

On Why 26,000 Teachers Are on Strike in Chicago

Ahem. There are a few points missing here: According to Reuters, the average salary of a public school teacher in Chicago is $71,000. The average private sector worker in Chicago makes $34,000. In the private sector, you don't ask for a raise unless you've done something particularly amazing. Please let me know what has been accomplished to warrant a 16 percent increase? It seems rather bad timing, to put it mildly, to ask taxpayers, who are making far less than you, and who do not have your amazing benefits and job security, to fund an increase without some major justification. The money just isn't there.

Posted on September 11, 2012 at 1:38 pm 0

On College Costs, Then and Now

What drives me batty is that you rarely read articles where the colleges explain WHY this is happening nor (more importantly) what they are doing to keep costs down. It's as though the media are afraid to ASK. So in my small way, I've decided to take charge: when my insanely over-priced alma mater calls to solicit donations, I ask them, first, what exactly are they are doing to keep prices down? Then, when the poor development dept intern sputters out some canned non-response, I suggest they hire a consulting firm like McKinsey to do analysis, and make recommendations where to cut the fat. Once such a report is ready, I ask that they send it to me for review. THEN and only then, will I consider a donation. Needless to say, I no longer get these types of calls.

Posted on September 4, 2012 at 5:24 pm 0

On We Are All On a Journey, Man (But Not The Same Journey)

Back to Mike's comment about why he "has" to save and Logan doesnt--I think everyone actually does have a "savings plan"-- its just that the "plan" is often a human person who will bail them out: a grandparent, parent, boyfriend or girlfriend. Most of my girlfriends who blow thru money have either an indulgent parent or a very successful boyfriend. Even those these people dont give them money on a daily basis, just knowing "they're there" seems to be enough to make financial discipline seem unnecessary.

Posted on August 31, 2012 at 5:49 pm 1

On Which Friend Are You?

@stuffisthings I wouldnt worry too much about him paying...first, he'll probably expense it. Second, if he didnt enjoy your company, he wouldnt pick up the tab. Trust me, nobody is going to subsidize anyone they dont REALLY like hanging out with. OK with THAT said, when I was freelancing and poor, a rich older woman friend (who was clearly low on companions) would always offer to treat me to dinner at super fancy places--she just wanted someone fun to eat out with. BUT, as I quickly found out, the unspoken rule was that I needed to be non-stop "amusing" and keep her entertained. At first I thought, No problem, I love to talk! But then it got really exhausting and I quickly tired of singing for my supper and ditched her. So oftentimes in these situations, there are some unspoken "strings" attached.

Posted on August 28, 2012 at 3:28 pm 0

On Splitting the Check Shouldn’t Feel Like Rocket Science

@CubeRootOfPi I know what you're saying! I make decent money but the places my richer friends choose are always the $100 a person places. Its in my best interests (career-wise) to attend these dinners because I meet a lot of potentially helpful people, but I dread being labeled as the charity case. BUT--a mitigating factor--when I mentioned my plight to another friend, he assured me my generous hosts were going to put these dinners on their company expense account anyway, so I shouldnt sweat it.

Posted on August 23, 2012 at 3:31 pm 0

On Splitting the Check Shouldn’t Feel Like Rocket Science

I would love an article on how to ensure you don't get unfairly stuck with the check. I live in LA, land of the shameless freeloader and have come to dread attending the big birthday bash, since half the party will undoubtedly disappear right before the check arrives. The choice has become 1) dont go or 2)leave early but throw a bunch of money on the table just before you do. Obviously neither option is good. If there is strategy to holding or attending one of these events and not getting burned, I would love to hear about it.

Posted on August 22, 2012 at 7:05 pm 0