Posts Tagged ‘Credit Card Debt’

royalty-free-gamble-clipart-illustration-442188The Armenian Hostage Crisis (Part 3)

Some people take a vacation from their jobs. I took a vacation from my car problems.

Yes I was excited to visit a good friend who had just moved to Miami, a place I’d never explored before and was anxious to see.

But I was just as excited to get away from my Volvo XC90, which hadn’t been operational in 61 days. I also wasn’t going to miss “Papa”, the Armenian mechanic I trusted to install a new engine over two months ago. Today, he’s more like my captor than my mechanic.


Part 2 here of our little crash course on D4D 1.0. It follows Part 1. D4D 2.0 is when I spring into action this winter. I’ll stick around afterwards to sign autographs.

images7. Presbyterian guilt?: I used to feel guilty if I spent significant time doing something I didn’t consider either directly or indirectly income producing. That’s why I gave up writing–I couldn’t justify it on the bottom line. And I still can’t, but I’ve learned to get over the guilt and enjoy the pleasure. Everybody has a creative side. If you don’t know yours you should find it, nurture it, and let it reward you.

8. Just Say Yes to Drugs: In the last two years I’ve been on a daily, albeit mild, dose of the ant-depressant Effexor and Ritalin, the latter because I’ve been told I have an attention deficit issue. Hard to say for sure, of course, but something is working. Either the life coach, or the plan to be credit-card free next year, or the new apartment, or the medication. But I can assure you my body chemistry is more stable than it’s been in years. And if the medication is to thank, or even just partially to thank, then I’m going to keep taking it.


(Here we are, Part 3 of “The Plan.” By now you’ve no doubt digested and scrutinized the first two parts, “Fear” and “Debt.” After this installment, which I call “ Savings,” next up will be “Income” and “Love.” Then I’ll meander into the day-to-day mechanics of implementation. It’s when you, the reader, will witness either a really grisly car accident or the making of a super hero. Or, more than likely, something very much in between.)


Phx HouseSo I have a couple hundred dollars in savings and an Individual Retirement Account (IRA) that will do me no good until I’m some ungodly old age. I have a few thousand dollars of available credit on a high-interest credit card and no chance of getting approved for more credit in the foreseeable future. I, like millions of other Americans, live paycheck-to-paycheck, hoping no calamity befalls me that requires anything more than a few hundred bucks to resolve.

And we all know unexpected crap hits the fan at will. I have a friend who recently had a sudden $50,000 dental issue for which she had no insurance. I have another friend who’s lost countless days at work due to an injury requiring two different surgeries. I have a third friend who quit her job to move back east for the better part of a year to put both her parents into a nursing home, pack up the family house, and put it on the market — all the while bringing in no income whatsoever, and having no savings to fall back on.

(This is part two of a five part series outlining “The Plan.” I know you’re probably tired of hearing me talk about me. Frankly, I am too. And, I’m sorry, I can’t tell you when that’ll stop. But rest assured if you stick around for a little while longer, this will get a little less preachy/existential and get down to the nuts and bolts of how a middle-aged guy implements a new course in life.)


debtAt the risk of being judged harshly, I’m going to admit something. I’ve enrolled in a debt relief program that will essentially wipe out half of my credit card debt. In and of itself that’s not so scandalous. But truth be told, I really don’t need a bailout. I’m taking advantage of this program because it’s available, because it will save me a boatload of money, and because it’s WAY easier than trying to figure out how to earn enough money to repay the entirety of my debt.

That last point, about earning money, will be covered in a future post on “The Plan.” For now, I’ll just say this: At my age (50), with my skills, and in this new economy, figuring out how to repay $40,000 of debt is daunting. Factor in the obvious reality of having to make enough money to survive the here-and-now, and it goes beyond daunting to the near impossible.