Friday Estimate

Good morning and TGIF! Time for some estimates.

I won’t be doing a weekend estimate today because I’ll be off next week. I had originally planned to take the $500 I put in a vacation savings account, rent a house upstate and go off the grid, but have decided to stay in the city, see friends, go to baseball games, sit outside in the middle of the day reading books, try some new restaurants, and try not to think about work for a week. We’ll see! I’ve always been bad about taking vacations. I’ll tally up my spending a week from now. Meaghan, Ester, and Nicole will be in charge.

But what about you? Any big plans this weekend?

WWYD: Should I Be Upset Because a New Hire is Getting Paid the Same Salary as Me?

Am I wrong to be incredibly irate about this? It’s hard to know what others in my position earn as the job is in a very niche industry and its tough to get an accurate range. I’ve already started looking for a new job, but not sure how to square all this so I can still get my job done and not just throw my hands up and completely check out mentally.

The End of Neighborliness

Hi. Nice to meet you. I live next door.

The Catalogs Keep Coming

You’d think that online shopping would have eliminated our need for catalogs, but according to the New Yorker, Americans receive nearly 12 billion catalogs a year—the worst of which is from Restoration Hardware, which has the door-stopping weight of 17 pounds and the ire of UPS delivery people. Most of the catalogs end up in the recycling bin, and are considered a waste of energy and resources.

Monday Check-in

And how were your weekends?

Friday Estimate

What are your estimates?

$1.4 Million in Assets, a Million in Debt

I usually enjoy reading the money makeover column in the Los Angeles Times, which runs every two months or so (and, coincidentally, was once written by Helaine Olen in the ’90s). The latest installment focuses on Ross and Michelle Meador, a couple who lives in Fullertorn with their three children and have $1.4 million in assets including a house in Berkeley that they rent out, but a million dollars in debt, including student loans, a mortgage, a HELOC (home equity line of credit—basically borrowing against your house), and mortgage debt.

Vision Benefits

I recently got vision benefits through one of my jobs and went to see my eye doctor, who scolded me (rightly), for waiting more than a year to do an eye exam. I was running low on contact lenses and needed to order a new batch—which required a new eye exam.

The ‘Instant Gratification Economy’

At Re/code, Liz Gannes kicks off a special series exploring the “instant gratification economy,” which is driven by tech companies creating apps allowing you to instantly access almost anything you can think of—transportation (Uber), takeout delivery (Seamless), groceries (Instacart) dry-cleaning (Washio), makeup and blowouts (Glam Squad), medical marijuana (Eaze)—and have it delivered to you immediately.

A Banker Missing His Wallet Asks for Some Money

It was close to 1 a.m. when I left the wedding on Saturday night, and since I was still wide awake and had all of my senses, I decided I’d save the money I had set aside for cab fare and walked to the subway, which was two blocks from the venue. I’d normally feel self-conscious about wearing a tuxedo on the subway because strangers can’t help but stare, but it was late and I found a seat in the back of the car.

When I got to my stop and walked out of the subway and in the direction of my apartment, a man wearing a college sweatshirt who looked to be in his late thirties approached me and tapped me on the shoulder while I waited at a crosswalk.

“Excuse me—I need some help and you look like someone who can help me.”

“Okay…” I said. I was highly aware that it was late, there were very few people around, and that I was wearing a tuxedo.