July 24th, 2012

Profitable morning

I got my Comcast bill today and it was up again... just a little but still. I went to their website to check the bill against last month's and see what/if there was any new news in the offerings. Their website does not show deals for current customers. If you don't have a piece of their stuff (tv, internet, phone) then you can see deals but not upgrades.

So I called. I currently have a package that gets tons of channels and HBO (none of the other premiums though) and 20 mbps internet. No phone. They have faster internet but my goal this morning was to save money and, right now anyway, the internet speed is fine.

After I listened to a bunch of mumbo jumbo and assured her that I did not need or want their phone, we got to it. She pulled out the 2 year plan deal. I tried to get that a couple of years ago and they didn't have it or it wasn't enough savings but my timing was good today. Signing up for the 2 year package saves me $40 a month starting right this minute. And, I can cancel HBO at any time and that will save me another $10. (The HBO was a 1 year special deal. At the end of the year it goes up to $20 and I'll cancel then.)

I'm a happy camper.

This month I dropped my cable bill down $40, my cellphone bill down $40, and I start collecting the rent ($75) from my storage locker. That's a nice little net nut every month!


Nothing going on today here at all. It's make your own fun day. I might just get started on the hoodie project I've had in mind for a while. I have a very ugly hoodie that I bought at Walmart years ago. It's wonderfully soft and fits great but it really is just ugly.

I have a bunch of t-shirts with great art. Places I've been, things I've done, sayings I like. But for whatever reason - don't fit, holes in wrong places, or whatever - I don't wear any more.

The plan is to tatoo the hoodie with the art from the t-shirts. And today might just be the day that gets going.


The muscles/nerves/joints in my body are all complaining this week. The knee I fell on started giving me trouble last night. Then my other knee started whining. Then somehow I slept on my neck funny last night and my head is arguing with my shoulder. I have swim class at noon. That will make it all feel better.

It never doesn't happen...

I got my first job when I was 16. I've depended on my own income since the day I got out of college in 1971. I've held a bunch of different jobs - in giant companies and small. And no matter what the size, what the circumstances, what the day or time, when my boss says to me 'I want to have a little chat' the very first thing that comes to my mind is that I'm going to get fired.

The first time I got a raise, the first time I got a bonus, the first time I got new benefits, a great trip, a free whatever - all of those times started out with my thinking I was going to get fired.

I actually have gotten fired twice. Once I was a legal secretary. I was a HORRIBLE legal secretary but I was the only one who knew how to operate the Lanier No Problem word processor. But, finally, after a year and a half, I was just too horrible to keep paying so they fired me. They should have done it 18 months earlier!

I got laid off from a job about 10 years ago. It was called a lay off but really, we all knew, it was a firing. I was tired of the job and my performance showed that. I should have quit but I was too lazy so they just laid me off.

BUT every other 'We need to have a chat' requests turned out to be good and actually those two firings ended up really well in the end.

This morning I got a note from my boss saying he wanted to 'catch up' and when was good time to call. Am I getting fired? I don't think so but if so, at this point, I'm cool with that. Maybe it's time for something new.

I do wish he'd call. I am getting a pretty severe case of curiousititis.


I am on a jihad against all paper. I no longer have a filing cabinet. I try to keep nothing. I have a basket papers go in there. When the basket is full, I go through it all and toss all but the bits that just have to be saved. I scan those that don't really need actual paper.

When I hit a web page that says 'print for your records' and I really might need it, I print to my free PDF maker software and file it in Google or Drop Box - depending on what it is.

As soon as I get a manual for anything, I find the PDF online, download a copy and file it on Drop Box (in my folder called manuals).

The system works well. Stuff is easy to find from any computer, even my phone.

So fired it is! Or laid off, actually

Turns out my part of his business (web production) is in a slump that he cannot see the end of just now. And so he needs to lay me off. He was very kind and politic about it and it was actually a lovely conversation. If he gets to the end of the slump, and he has work for me to do, he'd like to have me back. But, for now...

He will make my first couple of Cobra payments and make sure I get the full unemployment insurance benefit (which in Washington State is quite healthy). The gap between 18 months of Cobra and medicare will be about 60 days which is certainly doable.

All in all, while I will miss the work, I am in the best position possible to deal with it. And lordknows I would have never gotten around to making the decision myself, it's probably a very good thing that he made it for me.

We're going to nail out the details tomorrow or the next day. I need to get my financial guy on board with anything we need to do before the trigger is pulled and he needs to get me some insurance nums.

But... except for dotting eyes and crossing tees, I'm retired.

Wow. Kind of cool, actually, I think.