The Idiot Strikes Thrice

We’re loving this series right? I can stop if you want.. but he’s just too good for drama.

I have 3 short stories for you today:

Tomatoes are expensive, and it took him 3 years to realize that

The Idiot: Just the other day, the Wife showed me the grocery bill and said that it was almost $5 for 3 small tomatoes! I freaked out at the bill and told her: STOP BUYING THEM THEN!!!!

I can’t believe it! She was buying tomatoes, only 3 for $5! We’d get all of what she bought for $1 or less in Mexico!

BF: Well.. she’s been buying them for like 3 years now right? The prices haven’t really changed. I know.

The Idiot: Well.. now we need to stop buying expensive food because I don’t have a job.

FB: Good call. But you know, there are cheaper grocery stores like the one we go to downtown….

The Idiot: Really!?

BF: Uh.. really. Tomatoes shouldn’t cost more than $1.99/lb depending on what type you buy…

The Idiot: WHERE!!?

It’s nice he’s thinking about saving money..

But what made us laugh and half-cry in pity was that she has been buying these same damn tomatoes for years now, and this is the first time he has ever objected to purchasing them… because he has never had a hand in the grocery bill or the shopping in his life.

They just went to the store, bought the items, paid what they were told to pay, and left.

Then they get home and can’t figure out why their grocery bill was hitting close to $1000/month for 2 adults and two babies considering how little they seem to eat (mostly frozen dinners and junk food because she doesn’t cook).

And only now, is he looking to cut the grocery bill, because he’s FINALLY realized that he had put such trust in his wife to handle the household bills & grocery shopping (to be a smart shopper that is), and she has been screwing them all these years by not shopping as smart as she claimed to shop.

I guess he was fooled all these years, because she’d only talk about how when chips for example, went on sale like 3 bags for $6.00, she’d stock up on it and come home crowing about how she scored a great deal. On snacks. And only snacks.

And this guy has an MBA?

The Idiot goes downtown every weekday (spending $66.25/month on a subway pass, and/or driving his car, wasting gas and paying $20/day for parking), to sit in the computer labs to look for jobs online.

One, he could have done this at home. He has a computer at home, etc. He doesn’t have to spend $70/month to get away, PLUS the cost of $15/day for a lunch downtown because he doesn’t bring his own. (Remember? Can’t cook.)

Two, assuming he doesn’t want to be at home with a nagging Wife and distracting Children, he has a Blackberry.

He could check anything he wanted on his Blackberry, or take his laptop and go to the local coffee shop (walking of course), and search for jobs there, instead of spending 2 hours commuting to “work” and back.

BF and I think that he’s just not coping well with losing his job and not having a place away from home to go everyday.

Routine is his thing.

And he’s going to this college (and even occasionally helping out researchers.. FOR FREE), so that he feels important, like he has a life and something to do instead of stay at home and bite his nails.

Anyway, this story has a point.

It just needed some background, just so you know that he has a spot to go to, UNINTERRUPTED, daily, to concentrate full-time on job hunting (which by the way, in this industry is futile because you cannot force IT projects to happen).

And with a BB, you can receive emails real-time, right?

Well, he was called in for an second round of interviews. And they asked him what days worked for him. The Idiot said: Thursday and Friday.

The guy emailed back on a Wednesday, that he wanted The Idiot to come in on a Friday morning for the second interview.

The Idiot, somehow, in a computer lab with a given computer and free internet, with a Blackberry and uninterrupted job searching time.. happened to not receive the email until Friday AFTERNOON.

It gets better.

The Idiot, instead of calling immediately and apologizing, asking if he could come in within an hour for the interview, panics instead.

He emails BF (and called our home 3 times) to ask WHAT TO DO.

I’m half laughing when I write this, because this guy claims to have an MBA, but clearly it’s just a paper degree because anyone can tell you that the first thing you do, is call, apologize your ass off, and reschedule immediately, or for next week, taking the blame all on yourself for not having read that email.

Instead, he spent the day waiting for BF to write back to him or call him to tell him what to do.

*smacks forehead*

This last one is a doozy….

“We needed a break”

So he lost his job right? Can barely even put tomatoes on the table? Scratch that, he doesn’t eat tomatoes any longer.

And the Wife doesn’t work (BF and I are certain she couldn’t even hold down a minimum wage job because she lacks any initiative or work ethic).

The kids are still growing like weeds.

And this is what we heard:

The Idiot: Did we tell you? We just needed a break SO BADLY we went on vacation to Boston!

BF & I: *staring at each other*…. *mentally whispering: “A break from what? Unemployment?”*

The Idiot: We went to this great spa for $500/night, we stayed two nights and then decided to extend the break until the end of the week!!!

FB: *speechless*

The Idiot: We saved money because we drove there instead of flying.

FB: … Saved……. money. You….. saved. Money. By driving. Okay. Yes. Okay.

Okay. I may sound like a hypocrite because I’m not on contract and I’ve visited New York City, Boston and Chicago this year alone.

But on the contrary!

I am all for travelling or doing fun stuff when you are on a break, unemployed unexpectedly.. whatever — free time is a precious resource you cannot get back.

But I only advocate doing that kind of stuff, if you have the money to pay for it, and you aren’t going to be financially destitute, and if you can still put food on the table for a good while longer while meeting and making all of your bills.

He stopped buying food! They’re probably losing weight as a result (bonus), but instead of saving that cash and buying even 3 tomatoes for $5, they decided to go out and spend 200 times that on 2 nights in some fancy spa hotel.

And they needed a break? FROM WHAT? From the stress of their financial problems and lack of gainful employment?

So instead of staying at home, figuring out what they can sell, crunching numbers, selling old kids’ toys that are barely touched and cutting back on utilities and other bills.. they decided to go out and BLOW a month’s worth of bills on a week-long vacation (I think he told us he spent about $3500 on the whole trip, because naturally, the spa had a really good chef, and they had to eat… right?).

Oh, and it was all put on a credit card.

BF and I have a suspicion he was given or approved a new line of credit, because he seemed unusually relaxed from the last time we met. More than relaxed.

You know, you want to help.. but you just don’t know where to begin, and the first step to helping others is that they have to admit they have a problem, are in denial and have to ask YOU for help.

No one likes a nosy busybody, even if they mean well.

So, any idiots in your life?
(This guy MUST have relatives out there.)

About the Author

Just a girl trying to find a balance between being a Shopaholic and a Saver. I cleared $60,000 in 18 months earning $65,000 gross/year. Now I am self-employed, and you can read more about my story here, or visit my other blog: The Everyday Minimalist.