Thursday, September 15, 2011

Chris McGinty - Enemy of Debt - Episode Ten

by Chris McGinty (According To Whim .com)

Welcome to Episode Ten of: Chris McGinty – Enemy of Debt

For an explanation of this feature, and disclaimers that talk about how I’m not a professional money anything, go to Episode One. If you are caught up to speed though, we’ll begin discussing my friend who called me in financial desperation on July 10, 2011. Out of some, perhaps slight respect for his privacy, I’m not using his real name. I am instead referring to him as Genghis Condoleezza Rice.

There are some unfortunate circumstances to report. Genghis’s daughter was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes since I last wrote. That has very little relevance to the circumstances of his debt, but it did affect a couple of things.

The main one being that Genghis’s mother-in-law put a rush order on getting the vehicle she planned to give them down here so he could get back and forth to the hospital, though there had been talk of her husband bringing it down prior to that. If there is any real problem here, it’s that it’s a gas guzzler. I’ve loaned him $60 for gas since he got it, and apparently his wife has to also put gas in the tank.

He had to take some time off work, but in this case it’s understandable, and that’s what “paid time off” days are supposed to be for. He was unable to work the guard job though because of having no vehicle, but is on the schedule now that he has a vehicle again.

He’s pulling some shit too, but I don’t know what the circumstances are. All I know is that I gave him that cheap pack of cigarettes and told him they had to last him until Friday. He didn’t ask me for cigarettes until Saturday, which was five days later. He had his wife’s bank card and bought lunch with it while he was at the hospital. I’m doubting that’s all he got. But I’m not so much worried about that. I don’t know how I’m going to do this, but I just need to get my money back from him, and then he can pull this shit all he wants. I don’t care if he fucks himself over because of cigarettes as long as he doesn’t owe me money while he does it.

When I leave work, I will be going to his apartment to go up to the bank to get his main paycheck. The problem is that it will be short because of the bank loan he had out. It’s the last payment on that loan, but it also means that after that is taken out there will barely be enough left to deal with everything else. I’m hoping it’s a little more than expected, because I really want to get out of the way of his erratic behaviour, before it injures me in the process of flailing. I have to admit that I’m seriously considering having him get another loan from his bank just to attack some of these other debts, and to get me paid back. And because I really feel like he’s going to get a loan anyway if I don’t have him do it. Because the bank payments come right out of his check, I imagine that he might think I won’t notice if he gets one. If he got another payday loan, he couldn’t deal with it without telling me the way we’re doing things.

I was thinking about this earlier. I can’t really believe how much he can’t be trusted on the issue of money. He’s basically pretty trustworthy in most other cases, as far as I know, but when it comes to money, he can’t be trusted. He can’t even trust himself, or he wouldn’t be in this circumstance, but I hate being in this circumstance where I can’t effectively help him out because I keep looking at the situation and seeing ways that he can manipulate things. Like I said, he can fuck himself over, but I want to get my money back before he does. I’ll write more after I’ve dealt with him tomorrow.

And now it’s two weeks later.

He gets his main paycheck again tomorrow. I figure that I should probably write about what has gone on before I have more to write. Luckily, I think the drama is subsiding a little. Who knows? But at least the day we got his main check, two weeks ago, the drama was in full swing.

I started by taking the $365 he owed me back. Then we got into a heavy discussion about the cigarette smoking, and how in my opinion he had practically quit having only smoked two packs in nine days. He tried to claim that he found a pack in his room that he didn’t know he had. I told him that was very unbelievable, and that was still only three in nine days. He then said that he did use his wife’s debit card to buy a pack, but only one. I pressed him about the “found pack” because I still didn’t believe him. He finally admitted that he sold some DVDs to a pawn shop to buy cigarettes. I told him that if he was going to sell anything that it needed to be to pay off his debt, especially if he was expecting to continue going into debt with me as I helped him.

It was at this point that he brought up the nicotine lozenges he had tried before. The problem with these is that when he used them to quit smoking before, he probably gave himself a worse nicotine addiction, because he was popping them like candy rather than taking one every two to four hours like he was supposed to. He said that he wanted to quit, but he didn’t have the willpower. I told him we would buy the lozenges, but he wasn’t going to smoke even another cigarette, which he of course tried to convince me that he had to have one last one to commemorate the last. I told him no. If he was serious about quitting, he had to be fully serious about quitting. He agreed.

We went in and bought a box. I came to the realization very quickly that the way they suggested quitting was going to be very expensive, so I started thinking how to cut the costs. I’ll deal with that next time though.

What I want to end this with is the exchange we had in my truck on the way home. He of course had to have one immediately. Before we were to his apartment, I told him to give me the box, and he got pissy. “So you won’t even trust me to only take seven a day. This is going to be a big control issue like the cigarettes.” I told him that I was doing it for his own good, because he couldn’t afford more for two weeks. If he burned through them, he would be out.

I want you to realize that I hate having to “control” him in that way. It means that I have to make special trips, initially to drop off cigarettes, and now to drop off lozenges. And the more days in advance I gave him cigarettes, the more likely he was to binge, so I can’t give him more than a couple of days of lozenges. It’s a pain in the ass. But I’m over my word count now, so I’ll pick this up next week.

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