Two payments for Santander

After crunching some earnings numbers, I called Santander Consumer and scheduled two payments for my car later this month, which should bring the payments all the way up to date by July 28. This makes good on my promise to choose to keep my car and let my Internet and my apartment go where God would have it to go.

This is an important thing to do. Of all my creditors, Santander Consumer was the only one that rang my cell phone as opposed to my home phone, and they rang it prodigiously, roughly once every two hours. I kept my phone turned off most of the time. That had to have hurt when recruiters and employers tried to call me on my cell phone for interviews and was shunted to my voicemail. Now that Santander is for the moment sated, I can keep my cell phone turned on more.

While we are on that subject, I’m happy to report that interviews and offers for interview are going well. My resumé now reflects that I can be reached by email at a free Gmail address, ready to take over when my Internet goes down for nonpayment over the weekend.

Now that it’s fresh on my mind, I better upload that resumé to Google Docs, just to have a readily available spare copy.

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Where’s my security?

My bid for the call center job at FacilitySource fell through. Bummer. But there are some interesting developments I need to tell you about.

Breckenridge Apartments has been having some dispute with Network Multifamily, the company that monitors the burglar alarms here on the complex. Breckenridge has decided to end their contract with Network Multifamily and give refunds to all the residents of the $35 they spent licensing their burglar alarms with the state of Ohio. The refund will come in the form of a credit to next month’s rent payment.

Lately, I’ve been paying really close attention to how I pray, or to what goes through my mind in the mornings.

“Father, I think it’s really great how You’re keeping me from overdrawing at the bank and giving me this extra credit on my rent for $35, but it’s not enough. I need more.”

Whoa! Big red flag being raised here. Why am I asking for more money? Could it be that I’m still trusting it for my security?

If Jesus is my source of security, then it shouldn’t matter at all to me how much of my money is taken away, or how many of the tools I use for Jesus are taken away. I’ll just keep right on functioning for Jesus. No problem. I’ll keep right on functioning even if all He gives me is a room at Faith Mission and a pen and a clipboard full of notebook paper. It makes no sense why He’d reduce me to that, though. After all, the rule goes that if you’re found faithful in smaller responsibilities, He’ll give you larger ones.

With my Pontiac GrandAm, I am a blessing to some seven, maybe eight people who don’t have cars of their own. Why would God put my car in danger of being repossessed? With this blog and what I do on Second Life, I can be a blessing to potentially thousands. Why would God put those things in danger as well?

My guess is it’s my faith He’s working on. It’s that underused, underestimated commodity in me that could turn out to be my greatest asset. I wonder what that could be like if He were to burn all the impurities out of it, all the trusting in the wrong things out of it.

My God! I just can’t fathom how wonderful that would be.

Held payments

I’m about to go to The Labor Company, that labor hall that I told you about in yesterday’s post. I appear headed to working at a packaging plant (they need over 200 people each for morning and evening shifts), but I cannot at present say for sure. Keep the prayer wheels turning.

In the meantime, I must sadly report that for some reason they are presently keeping to themselves, the Ohio Dept. of Job & Family Services is holding back my unemployment benefits for the weeks ending Feb. 13 and Feb. 20.

This really irks me. I play the game according to Hoyle the first week of the month, telling them about the four days I worked for the Ohio Educational Technology Conference. They denied payment for that week, which is what is supposed to happen. I can’t figure out why they are holding the two payments after that.

I took a screen grab of the web page that says so, just in case they try to say they don’t know what I’m talking about, and I fired them a feedback demanding to know why they are doing this. I have come to the end of my patience with these people.

Blame me

I wake up each morning taking some hard shelling from the opposition inside my brain.

Call it the Inner Critic, call it the Devil, call it coming out of denial, call it what you like, but whatever it is, it likes to blame me for the economic danger that I’m in. It says I brought it on myself because spent too much money on something or other. Take a listen at what went through my brain just moments before I got up.

You know that $7.50 dinner you ate at China Way eight days ago? That’s the fatal mistake that’s going to do you in. It’s $7.50 you’re going to wish to God you can have back before the week is out.

How about that $14.62 you spent at Big Lots for a 4GB memory card for a digital camera on February 11? That’s something you didn’t exactly need, either. More money you’ll wish you had back.

Doesn’t look good for you, genius.

I tell you, this part of my mind is ripping me open a new one.

Oh, sure, you’re going to tell your baldfaced lies about this. You’re going to say the money is from your income tax refund, and you’re entitled to splurge it a little. Nothing can be farther from the truth.

You’re also going to say the Ohio Department of Job & Family Services dropped the ball, docking you twice for only one week of work. Makes no difference what they do, puke-for-brains. Your job is to adapt to anything thrown at you and adapt successfully. Adapt or die. Been that way since the first amoeba breathed.

But you can’t mean this! The world is throwing all this trouble at me and no help to deal with it? It’s impossible to come up with all the money everybody wants. And now you’re flaying me alive because I can’t do the impossible? This is unfair.

Another of your accursed baldfaced lies! Fairness is purely an invention of man, and it’s just like man to expect the world to be fair. The world is not obligated to be fair. What it is obligated to do is destroy the weak so only the strong can go on to have babies and keep the species strong. Sayonara, weakling.

I wish I could train my heart not to believe this guy.

Educational tech conference

I am doing a very risky thing right now. I have Ooo Shinee parked at Goodale Park, where one of my supervisors said I could park for free.

Free? Naww! Prime piece of parking real estate this close to the Greater Columbus Convention Center that by some miracle didn’t turn into office buildings or condos? Free?

If it is, it has probably had legions of idiots abusing the privilege of parking there and making it necessary for tow trucks to patrol it. I will have to check on my car come lunchtime, maybe move it to a different space.

I wanted to take the bus downtown today, but paying the rent for February, a month so short it ought not to be called a proper month, left me not much in my combined bank accounts. (Sorry, talking amounts violates this blog’s Security Policy.) I meticulously tried to provide for my food for the coming few days, only to find myself kicking myself in the buttocks for failure to provide for two begging neighbors from the next building over as well.

Unemployment be damned. I am still the rich man, and I’m still responsible for Lazarus.

Oh, excuse me, did I say “supervisors”? It turns out that I am working at the on-site registration desk at the 2010 Ohio Education Technology Conference. The early morning hours were mad with long lines of people coming up to get registered. It’s that way for any kind of convention. But in the afternoon hours the people are gone and time drags, just like it did for me in the late hours at the Ohio Department of Health. During break I took a walk around the exhibition hall and saw all kinds of mouth-watering technological toys there. I saw dry-erase boards that sense where your body is for a computer that projects graphics onto it. I saw a kind of table with a touch-sensitive screen built into it that ran programs that teach kids to count money and other objects.

What a good time to be a pupil. And I’ve never been so in love with technology as I am now. Tomorrow I must wear a bib. You’d drool too if you saw all those teaching gadgets.

Financial hypermiling

I’m not doing well, I must confess.

The first payday of the month is spent writing all the automatic and mandatory charges out of my checkbook, until I’m down to about $70 or $60, followed by two weeks of the best financial hypermiling I can possibly do.

I’m starting to think that maybe that $20 spent bumping my WordPress blog up to a total 8 GB of storage space wasn’t the best idea in the world, or my printer doesn’t need all that extra refill ink, or maybe two or three days of regular eating could have been done with what I spent on that take-out dinner from Mark Pi’s. The situation’s not good when I think on what I should have done rather than on what can be done now.

Bah! I hate this hypermiling. That means two more weeks of hardly going anywhere.

This week, I’m going to insist on both my days off. So what kind of fun can I have for free?