Thursday, December 04, 2003
Time to start Christmas shopping
I hate living paycheck-to-paycheck. I've never been particularly good with money, but I've only been unsure about how I was going to pay my bills once or twice since graduation. Heck, if I'd known Michelle was going to steal my life, I could have left her with a lot more credit card debt to make undoing the switch more appealing.
Right now, I'm able to budget Michelle's paycheck without much trouble. There's not much left over once rent, utilities, and groceries are out of the way; enough for a couple movies a week. I'm grateful for the clothing stipend and broadband internet that this job offers as perks. I wasn't exactly saving up to make a down payment on a house before, but now, any ideas I might have about flying to Seattle to find my body or hiring a private detective basically become pipe dreams.
The thing is, I like Christmas shopping. I always took a lot of crap from Kurt and my other male friends about it - ironically, they'd call me a big girl, at least until we exchanged gifts a few days before going home to see our own families, at which point I rocked. Where a lot of people I know see drudgery and obligation, I always enjoyed the challenge of getting someone a present they'd like but probably wouldn't have bought themselves. If I had siblings or, better yet, neices and nephews, I would have so much fun...
Anyway, I want to get something nice for Jen and Kate; they can't possibly know how important their friendship was four months ago when I might otherwise have hated everything about this life, or when I might have felt totally alone after Kurt dumped me, or even when I just needed to buy clothes or do something otherwise female-specific. They've sort of been like role models for me. I love them like family, to be honest.
I just have a hard time finding room in the budget for gifts. I don't even know if I'll be getting a Christmas bonus; I figure a company which pays its receptionist $500 every few months for clothes won't be stingy that way, but maybe the thinking is that perks like that are in lieu of cash at the end of the year. I've tried to cut down on what I spend on myself, but that's not doing much.
I'm looking at getting a second job, I guess, although I probably missed the most of the holiday hiring by not realizing this before Thanksgiving. I've picked up a few applications, but sometimes I work fairly late here without warning, so it would just be weekends.
It's also frustrating to not be able to fill out a work history on those applications, either. I can list BioSoft, of course, but the Resume.doc file on this computer is completely corrupted. I've also got no idea what Michelle might have used for user IDs and passwords on Monster.com or the like. I don't know whether that's deliberate or just bad luck; I suppose I can see Michelle not wanting me to learn too much about her previous life so I can't start poking around in it, see who she knows who could build a brain-swapping machine or who would smell a rat as soon as I opened her mouth. On the other hand, narrow my options too much and who knows what sort of desperate thing I'll do.
Not going to let it get me down, though. I love Christmas and I'm not going to let this spoil it.
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