@ennaenirehtac Yes, I had two thoughts while reading this: 1. Sometimes we splurge, and life goes on. Sometimes it's great to just say "fuck it" and go overboard and not regret it. (Not ALL THE TIME, but anyway don't beat yourself up.) 2. There are many ways to celebrate and appreciate life without spending much--or any--money, so I think it's also important to learn to take advantage of those.
@aetataureate You're right, I think she makes it clear that those particular meals are due to the heat, but I think @Holden Cauliflower's point still holds up pretty well. Even with air conditioning, dealing with extreme heat and humidity all day can just be exhausting, which often leads to less cooking, more buying meals. Same with, for example, showering--even if I have AC in my apartment, I get sweaty enough from the walk on my commute that I need an extra shower anyway. Not that I'm trying to knock the article at all--these kinds of calculations are really good to do. I'm just agreeing that she should take into consideration the fact that a good amount of them will probably remain with or without AC. As another commenter posted, it's just part of summer.
I don't want to get all "who has the worst situation" contest-y here, but I always hear New Yorkers complain about apartment rent and size, and then when I actually hear the size (in this case, able to fit an entire full-sized bed [and dresser!!!]), I'm like, "OH MY GOD YOU HAVE ALL THAT SPACE???" And then I laugh hysterically, and then I start crying. Tokyoites = masters of tiny spaces
@Jenn@twitter Late comment, but I have to rant: what is up with tops these days?? I went shopping recently for some nicer-ish tops for work, and nearly all of them were see-through or required layering for some reason or another. And I just... why?? I like layering, sure. But I would really like to be able to buy a shirt that I can simply put on and wear. I hate the idea of needing to buy MORE THINGS just to make my garment wearable. Especially for what I was buying--they're (kind of, for me) expensive shirts, made for work. They should be good enough on their own, not require creativity and extra purchases and all that.
I completely get what you're saying about the car thing, Logan. But I guess... for now, just appreciate the extra money you'll have, and if you feel guilty about it, the best way to thank them is to very diligently put aside that new $300 per month and use it to chip away at your debt. It sounds like you have a great family who just wants to know that you're doing okay! Just keep reminding yourself of that.
@redheaded&crazy You're right that this is good advice on How To Deal With Going to Bars When You're Broke. And I don't mean to knock that, because it's useful, and because no matter how broke we are, we will never simply stop going to bars (nor would I give that advice, because it's unrealistic and terrible). But I feel that it's just a tiny band-aid on the problem. The question wasn't "how can I deal when I'm in the bar?", it was "SHOULD I go to the bar?" And the honest answer is "weeelllll... not if you can help it." There are so many other suggestions to be made on how to do this less often, and things you can do so you aren't missing out on fun, and most of all, NOT wallowing in sorrow as you do these things. And it's not as if Logan is stupid or a terrible advice columnist. It's just that it's clear from her answer that she hasn't quite figured this out herself yet. Which is why I questioned her giving this advice.
@ImThraxx Yes--I say this without malice or anything, but I'm not really clear why Logan is answering these questions if these columns are meant to be taken seriously at all. It seems very unfair to someone who is genuinely looking for good financial tips. Now, I agree that it makes total sense to have someone who's like, "I've been there, and I've manage to sort it out, and you can, too." But Logan, although she has been taking amazing steps, is still very much someone who is in need of help, not someone who should be trying to GIVE help. It would be like me working for a nutrition site and trying to help people who are struggling to, like, learn to eat less ice cream. I'm afraid that's just not an area where I can be of help.
"Staying home to mope about your lack of funds does not help you" Here, right here, is a huge part of the problem, I think. Why the hell does "not going to the bar" have to equal "staying home to mope"?? This is a very strange attitude, and it's a self-fulfilling prophecy, really. If you equate not going to bars with some sort of admission of personal failure, then yes, it will be a negative experience. But when the hell did going to bars become the only way to be a normal, social person? If getting drunk is the thing, try changing the pattern a bit, like hanging out in someone's apartment semi-regularly. If meeting new people is the thing, you can do that in any number of places. And then, yes, maybe once in a while, just every so often, you just need to bow out and stay home, but surely you can think of something SEMI-amusing to do once a month that's not just sitting around moping about it. I'm not saying never-ever go to bars, but come on. It really does not take THAT much creativity to come up with cheap fun.
@Jake Reinhardt I pretty much agree. If Logan were asking, I'd say take the check, because $100 would be huge for her right now. But since Mike is pretty financially comfortable, I think the upgraded computer is worth it, based on the little information I know about the upgrades.
@OneTooManySpoons I did want to emphasize, though, that besides the advice that I'm offering, I think you did an amazing job this week, Logan!!! I know we're all shouting suggestions at you, but you've made such a difference so far, even if it still feels like you have no money. (Well, ok, you DO have no money, but you aren't putting yourself further into debt, WHICH IS A HUGE THING.)