Author Topic: Relatives who just don't get it  (Read 1255903 times)

Shinplaster

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4050 on: December 01, 2017, 04:23:02 PM »
I donít understand the television as background noise thing. I find it incredibly stressful to have that noise going. When I visited my SIL and they had the television going all the time I found myself hiding in the guest room to escape it.

Mr. SP fully retired 2 years ago.  I'm pretty much living in our den (with doors!)  to escape the damn TV being on all day.  The same things over, over, and over again.  He promises to turn it off, but like a moth to a flame, half an hour later it's on again. 

I'm slowly losing my mind.

I feel for you.  My MIL and FIL retired a couple years ago.  FIL's health is bad, he's got CHF, Diabetes, 1 kidney, and weighs 400lbs.  All they do is sit home and watch TV.  16 hours a day.  He's basically immobile and can only manage to walk a couple minutes before needing to sit and recover.

It is awful.  I like MIL and she wanted to do so much in retirement, instead she sits by FIL while he watches TV and sleeps all day.  She won't go anywhere because she has to take care of his every need. 

I can't imagine working your whole life and then just saying fuck it I'm sitting in front of this TV every day until I die.  There is a whole world out there of things to see and do!

Oh no, my future won't be sitting by Mr. SP while he watches TV and sleeps.  I have no intention of catering to his every need at my expense.  I have let this go on far too long as it is, because I thought he needed time to recover from a toxic work environment.  Time's up.  Conversations have started, and I'm confident there will be changes in the new year.

I feel very sorry your MIL's life is so restricted because of your FIL.  I do not want her story to ever become my story.
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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4051 on: December 01, 2017, 04:34:14 PM »
So now I'm thinking there is an amazing RomCom in this. Two Indian singles meet online, exchange photos, and plan to be each other's fake girlfriend/boyfriend for the holidays for the inquiring moms and aunties. After many hijinks, they actually meet and fall in love. The end.
And how about this: they each admit to their families, after the holidays are over, that the relationship was fake.  Then, once the relationship blossoms, they have to explain to their families a few weeks later that it isn't fake any more, and now their families won't believe them! :P

OK, who is friends with Mindy Kaling? She would be the perfect producer/writer/director/star of this project!

We could write the script collaboratively. I've got a bit of a vicious knack with words and can do decent dialogue.

For some reason I think one of the aunts needs to be a bank robber.  This would get us a big song and dance number within a bank and some bollywood physics during a getaway chase.

One of the aunts should be a baker specialising in super-extravagant wedding cakes, or maybe a high-end wedding caterer. There's a beautifully-shot dance scene with cooks and waiting staff swirling around each other in intricate patterns and culminating in a big pan out to the epic wedding she is cooking for. Probably one of the main characters works for her in some menial job in the evenings, so the aunt can pursue them round the kitchen berating and wheedling and the camera can follow them, weaving in and out of al the intense yet elegant cooking activity. And provides an excellent opportunity to move the story along in a "Look what a beautiful wedding you could have if you just got married!" dialogue-into-showbiz-number.

The hardest thing about making a movie like this would be presenting the family and its traditions as being legitimate and appropriate. It would be very, very easy to turn the families into caricatures and cater to various stereotypes. That's one of the things that "My Big, Fat, Greek Wedding" and "Bend It Like Beckham" didn't do. Those movies were phenomenally successful in part *because* they were able to find humor in various situations while still being respectful of the family's culture.

Simply mocking an entire culture and traditional perspective is not effective script-writing so we'd have to avoid the temptation to do that.

We could have one character, or perhaps two, be over the top like the caterer/wedding planner/cake-decorating auntie or the career criminal relative. But the family tradition (including at least some of the meddling) has to be presented as legitimate and the people doing it have to be mostly sympathetic. There are arguments in favor of having more than one perspective on a suitor.

I loved both of those films, and one which I think tried to do the same thing but didn't quite hit the mark was 'Bride and Prejudice'. Obviously it was based on an existing story, but there was something about it which was a bit laboured, despite a couple of excellent set pieces.

I had imagined the wedding caterer auntie would perhaps be the big glitzy opener which would immediately set up the "You should get married!" backstory and perhaps the main character would see/hear something or meet someone at the wedding which would precipitate the action of finding a fake fiance(e). It could, indeed, be the son/daughter of the wedding caterer auntie (hence why it is the biggest and bestest wedding in the world), and the cousin could confide something in the main character about either how much they wish they could just elope or about "Well, getting married is just what you do, isn't it?"

A scene that exaggerated has to be built up to, because otherwise it's just going to be a caricature of what's got to be a fairly offensive stereotype. I wouldn't open with it.

The only way to do a scene like that would be to introduce the family, caterer auntie and all, and humanize her first. After doing that, an overblown reception of some kind could be quite funny near the end of the first act. I'm imagining a scene shot from above, with a bunch of circular tables and a set of wait staff spinning, turning, and moving together like a bunch of tray-toting synchronized swimmers.
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shelivesthedream

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4052 on: December 01, 2017, 05:05:23 PM »
So now I'm thinking there is an amazing RomCom in this. Two Indian singles meet online, exchange photos, and plan to be each other's fake girlfriend/boyfriend for the holidays for the inquiring moms and aunties. After many hijinks, they actually meet and fall in love. The end.
And how about this: they each admit to their families, after the holidays are over, that the relationship was fake.  Then, once the relationship blossoms, they have to explain to their families a few weeks later that it isn't fake any more, and now their families won't believe them! :P

OK, who is friends with Mindy Kaling? She would be the perfect producer/writer/director/star of this project!

We could write the script collaboratively. I've got a bit of a vicious knack with words and can do decent dialogue.

For some reason I think one of the aunts needs to be a bank robber.  This would get us a big song and dance number within a bank and some bollywood physics during a getaway chase.

One of the aunts should be a baker specialising in super-extravagant wedding cakes, or maybe a high-end wedding caterer. There's a beautifully-shot dance scene with cooks and waiting staff swirling around each other in intricate patterns and culminating in a big pan out to the epic wedding she is cooking for. Probably one of the main characters works for her in some menial job in the evenings, so the aunt can pursue them round the kitchen berating and wheedling and the camera can follow them, weaving in and out of al the intense yet elegant cooking activity. And provides an excellent opportunity to move the story along in a "Look what a beautiful wedding you could have if you just got married!" dialogue-into-showbiz-number.

The hardest thing about making a movie like this would be presenting the family and its traditions as being legitimate and appropriate. It would be very, very easy to turn the families into caricatures and cater to various stereotypes. That's one of the things that "My Big, Fat, Greek Wedding" and "Bend It Like Beckham" didn't do. Those movies were phenomenally successful in part *because* they were able to find humor in various situations while still being respectful of the family's culture.

Simply mocking an entire culture and traditional perspective is not effective script-writing so we'd have to avoid the temptation to do that.

We could have one character, or perhaps two, be over the top like the caterer/wedding planner/cake-decorating auntie or the career criminal relative. But the family tradition (including at least some of the meddling) has to be presented as legitimate and the people doing it have to be mostly sympathetic. There are arguments in favor of having more than one perspective on a suitor.

I loved both of those films, and one which I think tried to do the same thing but didn't quite hit the mark was 'Bride and Prejudice'. Obviously it was based on an existing story, but there was something about it which was a bit laboured, despite a couple of excellent set pieces.

I had imagined the wedding caterer auntie would perhaps be the big glitzy opener which would immediately set up the "You should get married!" backstory and perhaps the main character would see/hear something or meet someone at the wedding which would precipitate the action of finding a fake fiance(e). It could, indeed, be the son/daughter of the wedding caterer auntie (hence why it is the biggest and bestest wedding in the world), and the cousin could confide something in the main character about either how much they wish they could just elope or about "Well, getting married is just what you do, isn't it?"

A scene that exaggerated has to be built up to, because otherwise it's just going to be a caricature of what's got to be a fairly offensive stereotype. I wouldn't open with it.

The only way to do a scene like that would be to introduce the family, caterer auntie and all, and humanize her first. After doing that, an overblown reception of some kind could be quite funny near the end of the first act. I'm imagining a scene shot from above, with a bunch of circular tables and a set of wait staff spinning, turning, and moving together like a bunch of tray-toting synchronized swimmers.

Excellent point! I tend to get carried away with my first, big idea. And I love a big, glitzy dance sequence (you described exactly what I was imagining!). My day job is visual arty stuff. Clearly the bits that will look good are the most important bits of the film and should therefore come first :)

Perhaps, then, the opening scene is the cousin announcing their engagement, or the female cousin talking about how she hopes her boyfriend is going to propose soon. And the precipitating event could be the main character being invited to their mega-wedding and not having a plus one, or saying "GoodFriend will be my plus one" and the cousin saying "Oh, but as you're not dating anyone we didn't think you'd want to bring one... I'm sorry, we're already at the venue max". Somehow, for hand-wavy backstory-makes-it-make-sense reasons, they decide to get a fake fiancť to bring as their plus one, but the first time they meet is the day of the cousin's wedding to end all weddings. Interesting to wonder whether it would make a better film for the family to love the new fiancť and be devastated when they "call off the engagement" or to dislike them and urge the main character to break up with them which leads the main character to carry on seeing them. I think the former would be more fun, but harder to work out a good ending.

Should we, er, start an Off Topic thread for this?! I'm loving it but am aware that some people may only be interested in relatives who just don't get it... But I'd love to carry on working it out!

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4053 on: December 02, 2017, 01:39:23 AM »
My Korean friend was given a choice from her father when she graduated high school with me (in Canada)...  Go to university or "come home" (to Korea) and he would find a husband for her.  She was 18, and chose university, but I think went home after 2 years because she really was not interested in the degree, just in not getting married.

I had a Japanese classmate in university (back in the late 80s) who planned to return to Japan after graduation, where she would get a job as a secretary.  Her B.A. from a North American university would mean she'd be secretary to a high-up executive, not just some manager. Then her father would find her a husband.  I asked whether, having lived in Canada for a few years, she was happy with the idea of an arranged marriage.  She said, not at all.  Arranged marriage doesn't equal forced marriage; she would have the right to refuse any guy her father offered, and she thought her father would pick a better man than she would.  "I'd just go for whether he did stuff like buy me flowers, but my father will think about whether he'll support me ling-term and stick around."  We didn't stay in touch after graduation, so I don't know how it turned out.

Is that what you meant? Or you asked if she was unhappy and she said not at all?

Zikoris

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4054 on: December 02, 2017, 10:26:39 AM »
It's fascinating to think about what sort of partner your parents would pick for you, if they had to try to arrange a successful marriage, isn't it?

I think my parents would have had a hard time agreeing. My mom would probably want a someone who was very educated, polished, and professional (maybe an accountant or engineer or something). My dad's pick would probably be someone more practical with some useful skills, like a trades guy who owned his own business and could fix things (and build me a tiny house).
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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4055 on: December 03, 2017, 07:42:06 PM »
I donít understand the television as background noise thing. I find it incredibly stressful to have that noise going. When I visited my SIL and they had the television going all the time I found myself hiding in the guest room to escape it.

My former housemate is one of those people who can't stand silence and needs to have the TV on all the time. That's one of the reasons she's my *former* housemate.

markbike528CBX

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4056 on: December 03, 2017, 10:20:32 PM »
I donít understand the television as background noise thing. I find it incredibly stressful to have that noise going. When I visited my SIL and they had the television going all the time I found myself hiding in the guest room to escape it.

My former housemate is one of those people who can't stand silence and needs to have the TV on all the time. That's one of the reasons she's my *former* housemate.

My former roommate had 4TVs on different channels, but sound off.  Stereo FM radio on unrelated station (. ie, not simulcast).

Just Joe

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4057 on: December 04, 2017, 11:30:32 AM »
It's fascinating to think about what sort of partner your parents would pick for you, if they had to try to arrange a successful marriage, isn't it?

I think my parents would have had a hard time agreeing. My mom would probably want a someone who was very educated, polished, and professional (maybe an accountant or engineer or something). My dad's pick would probably be someone more practical with some useful skills, like a trades guy who owned his own business and could fix things (and build me a tiny house).

My parents would have picked someone just like them and that would have never lasted - when I grew up, I moved out. ;)

My sibling married a carbon copy of my parents and that one is well loved by my parents. I enjoy a visit with my sibling and S.O. but can't imagine living with them.

wordnerd

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4058 on: December 04, 2017, 02:58:19 PM »
Assorted recent familial silliness:

My SIL posted on FB about her 2-year anniversary with her expensive bought-new car last week (calling the car the "love of her life"). Today, she posts about buying a brand new SUV because she "needs more space." Note: she is a single and has a small dog.

My parents bought a boat that they keep at a marina 45 minutes from their house. They almost never take the boat out of the slip, but got sit in the cockpit and drink cocktails.


ixtap

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4059 on: December 04, 2017, 03:03:20 PM »
Assorted recent familial silliness:

My SIL posted on FB about her 2-year anniversary with her expensive bought-new car last week (calling the car the "love of her life"). Today, she posts about buying a brand new SUV because she "needs more space." Note: she is a single and has a small dog.

My parents bought a boat that they keep at a marina 45 minutes from their house. They almost never take the boat out of the slip, but got sit in the cockpit and drink cocktails.

This is how the vast majority of boats are used. A few people here have smaller boats that they store on a trailer and put in the water when they want to go somewhere. Some of them leave the dock twice a year, once for fourth of July, and once for Christmas lights. Many never leave, then they can't leave because the engines haven't been run.

wordnerd

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4060 on: December 04, 2017, 03:07:50 PM »
Assorted recent familial silliness:

My SIL posted on FB about her 2-year anniversary with her expensive bought-new car last week (calling the car the "love of her life"). Today, she posts about buying a brand new SUV because she "needs more space." Note: she is a single and has a small dog.

My parents bought a boat that they keep at a marina 45 minutes from their house. They almost never take the boat out of the slip, but got sit in the cockpit and drink cocktails.

This is how the vast majority of boats are used. A few people here have smaller boats that they store on a trailer and put in the water when they want to go somewhere. Some of them leave the dock twice a year, once for fourth of July, and once for Christmas lights. Many never leave, then they can't leave because the engines haven't been run.

My parents have a bad enough restaurant habit, but it would definitely be cheaper for them to go to a waterfront restaurant for drinks every other weekend. My parents make consistently bad decisions with money, though, so I'm not surprised.

shelivesthedream

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4061 on: December 05, 2017, 04:06:06 AM »
My grandmother lives in a flat with an excellent view of a marina. One of her favourite pastimes is tracking the boats in and out through binoculars. She has lived there for a good ten years now. When I went down recently she pointed out a very distinctive boat with a red hull at the end of a row right in the centre. You really couldn't miss it. She said that she has never ever seen that boat leave the marina. It's still neat and tidy, so not abandoned, and I think she has seen the owners checking on it once or twice, but it has never ever been used (even for drinks parties) in ten years.

MgoSam

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4062 on: December 05, 2017, 12:03:19 PM »
Thanks everyone, I laughed so much.

ixtap

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4063 on: December 05, 2017, 12:16:57 PM »
My grandmother lives in a flat with an excellent view of a marina. One of her favourite pastimes is tracking the boats in and out through binoculars. She has lived there for a good ten years now. When I went down recently she pointed out a very distinctive boat with a red hull at the end of a row right in the centre. You really couldn't miss it. She said that she has never ever seen that boat leave the marina. It's still neat and tidy, so not abandoned, and I think she has seen the owners checking on it once or twice, but it has never ever been used (even for drinks parties) in ten years.

We have a meticulously maintained, 50 some foot, blue hulled sailboat. It is gorgeous! It leaves maybe once a year and the owner is thinking of selling, but he wants practically new price for his ten year old boat. It gorgeous, but that is ten year old blue gelcoat...it is going to fade eventually.

mm1970

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4064 on: December 05, 2017, 12:59:18 PM »
So now I'm thinking there is an amazing RomCom in this. Two Indian singles meet online, exchange photos, and plan to be each other's fake girlfriend/boyfriend for the holidays for the inquiring moms and aunties. After many hijinks, they actually meet and fall in love. The end.
And how about this: they each admit to their families, after the holidays are over, that the relationship was fake.  Then, once the relationship blossoms, they have to explain to their families a few weeks later that it isn't fake any more, and now their families won't believe them! :P

OK, who is friends with Mindy Kaling? She would be the perfect producer/writer/director/star of this project!

We could write the script collaboratively. I've got a bit of a vicious knack with words and can do decent dialogue.

For some reason I think one of the aunts needs to be a bank robber.  This would get us a big song and dance number within a bank and some bollywood physics during a getaway chase.

One of the aunts should be a baker specialising in super-extravagant wedding cakes, or maybe a high-end wedding caterer. There's a beautifully-shot dance scene with cooks and waiting staff swirling around each other in intricate patterns and culminating in a big pan out to the epic wedding she is cooking for. Probably one of the main characters works for her in some menial job in the evenings, so the aunt can pursue them round the kitchen berating and wheedling and the camera can follow them, weaving in and out of al the intense yet elegant cooking activity. And provides an excellent opportunity to move the story along in a "Look what a beautiful wedding you could have if you just got married!" dialogue-into-showbiz-number.

The hardest thing about making a movie like this would be presenting the family and its traditions as being legitimate and appropriate. It would be very, very easy to turn the families into caricatures and cater to various stereotypes. That's one of the things that "My Big, Fat, Greek Wedding" and "Bend It Like Beckham" didn't do. Those movies were phenomenally successful in part *because* they were able to find humor in various situations while still being respectful of the family's culture.

Simply mocking an entire culture and traditional perspective is not effective script-writing so we'd have to avoid the temptation to do that.

We could have one character, or perhaps two, be over the top like the caterer/wedding planner/cake-decorating auntie or the career criminal relative. But the family tradition (including at least some of the meddling) has to be presented as legitimate and the people doing it have to be mostly sympathetic. There are arguments in favor of having more than one perspective on a suitor.
Has anyone else see Meet the Patels?  I enjoyed that movie.

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4065 on: December 05, 2017, 02:05:43 PM »
Not sure if this fits in this topic though I am enjoying the Bollywood Rom-Com idea for the record:

I have a great aunt who lives not far from me with her son my cousin.  No one had heard from them in quite some time so I was asked to go over to the house and see if anyone was still alive.  I ran into my cousin entering the home and proceeded to quiz him on what's been going on.  Backstory: Cousin in question though he has been gainfully employed has been known to abuse drugs and prone to exaggerations so one is never quite sure what to believe) Great aunt is in the hospital she is 99 and likely will not return to her own home though maybe it's just as well since the electricity and water are turned off due to lack of payment which I found curious since my late great uncle left her his pension and he was a Fed.  Cousin claims her pension was cut by $900 when I asked why the bills weren't paid.  Also his daughter (or stepdaughter if you want to get technical since he's on the outs with her) is in charge of the finances and according to him she was paying home health aides but not the utilities.  After freezing my behind off for 2 hours  I went home and promptly called the cousin who asked me to check on them gave her a report then scurried home to prep for Thanksgiving.  At this point I don't know who is telling the truth who is lying or the condition of my great aunt.  I also informed my mother of everything who advised me to stay out of it until more information becomes available.



kayvent

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4066 on: December 05, 2017, 06:49:23 PM »
My grandmother lives in a flat with an excellent view of a marina. One of her favourite pastimes is tracking the boats in and out through binoculars. She has lived there for a good ten years now. When I went down recently she pointed out a very distinctive boat with a red hull at the end of a row right in the centre. You really couldn't miss it. She said that she has never ever seen that boat leave the marina. It's still neat and tidy, so not abandoned, and I think she has seen the owners checking on it once or twice, but it has never ever been used (even for drinks parties) in ten years.

I have an uncle who paid way too much for a truck. The loan costs one thousand dollars a month. He got it because he has a boat. Last I was told, he hasn't used the boat once.

zolotiyeruki

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4067 on: December 05, 2017, 09:17:03 PM »
My grandmother lives in a flat with an excellent view of a marina. One of her favourite pastimes is tracking the boats in and out through binoculars. She has lived there for a good ten years now. When I went down recently she pointed out a very distinctive boat with a red hull at the end of a row right in the centre. You really couldn't miss it. She said that she has never ever seen that boat leave the marina. It's still neat and tidy, so not abandoned, and I think she has seen the owners checking on it once or twice, but it has never ever been used (even for drinks parties) in ten years.

I have an uncle who paid way too much for a truck. The loan costs one thousand dollars a month. He got it because he has a boat. Last I was told, he hasn't used the boat once.
Holy smokes.  That's how much the mortage payment was (including taxes!) for our first home (1500 sq ft)!

Sun Hat

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4068 on: December 06, 2017, 07:19:37 AM »
I have a great aunt who lives not far from me with her son my cousin.  No one had heard from them in quite some time so I was asked to go over to the house and see if anyone was still alive.  I ran into my cousin entering the home and proceeded to quiz him on what's been going on.   At this point I don't know who is telling the truth who is lying or the condition of my great aunt.  I also informed my mother of everything who advised me to stay out of it until more information becomes available.

I smell a rat and hope that your great aunt is being better cared for than her home and financial affairs are!
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TheGrimSqueaker

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4069 on: December 06, 2017, 08:38:23 AM »
My grandmother lives in a flat with an excellent view of a marina. One of her favourite pastimes is tracking the boats in and out through binoculars. She has lived there for a good ten years now. When I went down recently she pointed out a very distinctive boat with a red hull at the end of a row right in the centre. You really couldn't miss it. She said that she has never ever seen that boat leave the marina. It's still neat and tidy, so not abandoned, and I think she has seen the owners checking on it once or twice, but it has never ever been used (even for drinks parties) in ten years.

I have an uncle who paid way too much for a truck. The loan costs one thousand dollars a month. He got it because he has a boat. Last I was told, he hasn't used the boat once.

Stanley and Danko are best remembered for introducing the concept of "economic outpatient care" or EOC as we call it on this forum, but they also illustrated how some kinds of belongings actually precipitate further spending even if the item is won in a raffle or given as a gift. They didn't have a trendy phrase for it-- maybe we should invent one. "Purchase Trigger", perhaps?

Anyway, the example Stanley and Danko used to illustrate the concept was a young professional-class couple who were given a very expensive Oriental rug with thousands of hand-tied knots. The rug was beautiful, but it also made a dreadful contrast with their somewhat worn dining room furniture, so to bring the room up to the same level as the rug taste-wise "required" them to spend thousands of dollars buying more upscale furniture, light fixtures, and such to redecorate the room with. It's not that they entertained often or for business purposes, it's just that having and using the rug-- for them-- created enormous pressure to do a lot of extra spending to the point where the extra spending cost more than the initial gift would have. It seems to me that, for your uncle, the boat was the same kind of acquisition because it triggered the purchase of a truck almost automatically. There were probably other boat-related expenses also: lifejackets, fishing gear, and the like, that wouldn't have occurred if there hadn't been a boat.
« Last Edit: December 06, 2017, 08:42:25 AM by TheGrimSqueaker »
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Playing with Fire UK

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4070 on: December 06, 2017, 08:47:23 AM »
The phrase I've heard is Diderot effect.

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4071 on: December 06, 2017, 08:53:57 AM »
I squeak softly, but carry a big schtick.

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4072 on: December 06, 2017, 10:45:12 AM »
My grandmother lives in a flat with an excellent view of a marina. One of her favourite pastimes is tracking the boats in and out through binoculars. She has lived there for a good ten years now. When I went down recently she pointed out a very distinctive boat with a red hull at the end of a row right in the centre. You really couldn't miss it. She said that she has never ever seen that boat leave the marina. It's still neat and tidy, so not abandoned, and I think she has seen the owners checking on it once or twice, but it has never ever been used (even for drinks parties) in ten years.

I have an uncle who paid way too much for a truck. The loan costs one thousand dollars a month. He got it because he has a boat. Last I was told, he hasn't used the boat once.
Holy smokes.  That's how much the mortage payment was (including taxes!) for our first home (1500 sq ft)!

It might also be related to situation I observe somewhat regularly. Unless the boat is huge, you don't need anything other than a 1/2 ton(or smaller) to tow it with. There seems to be a plethora of people who need a 1 ton diesel (towing capacity ~30,000lbs) to tow a ~4,000 lb boat.

former player

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4073 on: December 06, 2017, 10:49:51 AM »
The phrase I've heard is Diderot effect.

Perfect.
Ha.  Where I live there is a very common phenomenon of someone buying a smaller, older house in a spectacular location (sea views, waterside or beach access, etc.) and sooner or later knocking it down to build something modern and as big as the plot will take.  They will often pay high six figures or low seven figures for one of these houses that they then knock down and rebuild.  Even more often, it is a couple without children who build these monstrous edifices when the smaller house would be a much better fit for them.  Diderot effect is the explanation for this behaviour that I have been missing all these years.  Thanks.
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Linda_Norway

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4074 on: December 06, 2017, 10:55:26 AM »
The phrase I've heard is Diderot effect.

Perfect.
Ha.  Where I live there is a very common phenomenon of someone buying a smaller, older house in a spectacular location (sea views, waterside or beach access, etc.) and sooner or later knocking it down to build something modern and as big as the plot will take.  They will often pay high six figures or low seven figures for one of these houses that they then knock down and rebuild.  Even more often, it is a couple without children who build these monstrous edifices when the smaller house would be a much better fit for them.  Diderot effect is the explanation for this behaviour that I have been missing all these years.  Thanks.

We (Dinky couple) have been looking for such a house. Sometimes there is such an old seafront house for sale, but they had always been half-modernized by the previous owner. New windows, new bathroom etc. Then they had become too expensive to knock down and were still too old to live in self. So we have never bought such a house.

By the way, we have also experienced the Diderot effect. When we bought our current house, there were some closets. Just not enough. We had to buy some extra closets. We bought the closets door in the same style as the existing doors. Those were the priciest doors that Ikea was selling. Everything is in the same style now, but it cost a small fortune.
« Last Edit: December 06, 2017, 10:58:58 AM by Linda_Norway »

BJacks

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4075 on: December 06, 2017, 11:09:35 AM »
My grandmother lives in a flat with an excellent view of a marina. One of her favourite pastimes is tracking the boats in and out through binoculars. She has lived there for a good ten years now. When I went down recently she pointed out a very distinctive boat with a red hull at the end of a row right in the centre. You really couldn't miss it. She said that she has never ever seen that boat leave the marina. It's still neat and tidy, so not abandoned, and I think she has seen the owners checking on it once or twice, but it has never ever been used (even for drinks parties) in ten years.

I have an uncle who paid way too much for a truck. The loan costs one thousand dollars a month. He got it because he has a boat. Last I was told, he hasn't used the boat once.

Stanley and Danko are best remembered for introducing the concept of "economic outpatient care" or EOC as we call it on this forum, but they also illustrated how some kinds of belongings actually precipitate further spending even if the item is won in a raffle or given as a gift. They didn't have a trendy phrase for it-- maybe we should invent one. "Purchase Trigger", perhaps?

Anyway, the example Stanley and Danko used to illustrate the concept was a young professional-class couple who were given a very expensive Oriental rug with thousands of hand-tied knots. The rug was beautiful, but it also made a dreadful contrast with their somewhat worn dining room furniture, so to bring the room up to the same level as the rug taste-wise "required" them to spend thousands of dollars buying more upscale furniture, light fixtures, and such to redecorate the room with. It's not that they entertained often or for business purposes, it's just that having and using the rug-- for them-- created enormous pressure to do a lot of extra spending to the point where the extra spending cost more than the initial gift would have. It seems to me that, for your uncle, the boat was the same kind of acquisition because it triggered the purchase of a truck almost automatically. There were probably other boat-related expenses also: lifejackets, fishing gear, and the like, that wouldn't have occurred if there hadn't been a boat.

A few years ago our faucet was having problems and one day my husband had enough and told me "Come one, lets go to Home Depot to pick out a new faucet." I told him "Well, the reason I haven't done anything about it is because if I get a new faucet I'm going to want a new sink and if I'm getting a new sink I'm going to want to replace the ugly countertops, so rather than looking for faucets we should go check out some counters."

We got a new faucet.

solon

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4076 on: December 06, 2017, 12:14:42 PM »
This Diderot effect sounds exactly like hedonic adaptation, or the consumer treadmill.

marielle

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4077 on: December 06, 2017, 12:29:27 PM »
This Diderot effect sounds exactly like hedonic adaptation, or the consumer treadmill.

I think they go hand-in-hand, but they're different. The Diderot effect is when you get something that is significantly nicer (whether it's a gift or you buy it), then the surrounding objects upset you because they don't match the luxury of the new item. Just like the faucet issue BJacks had. It's as if the new luxury item will seem like a waste if you don't upgrade other things to match. To most people, it would be silly to have an old ratty couch scratched to hell by pets but then have a fancy custom coffee table sitting in front of it.

The hedonic treadmill is when you buy something you really want and it makes you happy (for a brief period), but then you go back to your "baseline" happiness once you get used to the new thing. So you want to buy something else to spark that elevated happiness again, or the same thing but an upgraded version. You buy a camera, but then you try one out in the store that has a bunch of new features yours doesn't. Now you want to buy that new one to get that brief dopamine increase again. This is basically the psychology advertising uses and the reason stores have new models of phones, cameras, etc for people to play with.

TheGrimSqueaker

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4078 on: December 06, 2017, 12:47:00 PM »
This Diderot effect sounds exactly like hedonic adaptation, or the consumer treadmill.

Hedonic adaptation is the way an individual's level of happiness tends to return to his or her normal level after a positive or negative change in circumstances: the person adapts to the "new normal", be it partial paralysis or a big pay raise.

The consumer treadmill is the cycle of working and spending, with additional work required to support additional spending.

The Diderot effect is when you buy items to "go with" another item because of a preconceived notion that they're part of a group of things that are *all* necessary in order to achieve the proper and appropriate effect. In Diderot's case, he received a very nice, fancy dressing-gown as a gift and ended up purchasing a new chair, furnishings, and other consumer goods because acquiring belongings appropriate to a man who would own and use such a dressing-gown became appropriate. I'm sure he became hedonically adapted at some point in the process, and jumped onto the 18th-century equivalent of the consumer treadmill to earn the money to pay for his new indulgences.
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jinga nation

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4079 on: December 06, 2017, 01:07:07 PM »
Does anyone find it amazing that Denis Diderot observed this in the mid/late 1700s? I think he wrote during the Louis XVI era, which may have been ample fodder for his works.
Basically he saw excessive consumption and irrational exuberance, etc. We're still grappling with those issues.
Nothing's changed.
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Rowellen

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4080 on: December 06, 2017, 02:50:43 PM »
On a smaller scale, my 6yo DD seems to think that because she had her ears pierced recently, she now needs more sets of earrings. She has been harassing me for weeks to buy her more.

AMandM

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4081 on: December 06, 2017, 04:19:52 PM »
I had a Japanese classmate in university (back in the late 80s) who planned to return to Japan after graduation, where she would get a job as a secretary.  Her B.A. from a North American university would mean she'd be secretary to a high-up executive, not just some manager. Then her father would find her a husband.  I asked whether, having lived in Canada for a few years, she was happy with the idea of an arranged marriage.  She said, not at all.  Arranged marriage doesn't equal forced marriage; she would have the right to refuse any guy her father offered, and she thought her father would pick a better man than she would.  "I'd just go for whether he did stuff like buy me flowers, but my father will think about whether he'll support me ling-term and stick around."  We didn't stay in touch after graduation, so I don't know how it turned out.

Is that what you meant? Or you asked if she was unhappy and she said not at all?

Sorry, you're totally right. Good catch.  She was not at all uncomfortable with the idea of her father picking her a (candidate) husband.

paddedhat

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4082 on: December 06, 2017, 05:28:53 PM »
My grandmother lives in a flat with an excellent view of a marina. One of her favourite pastimes is tracking the boats in and out through binoculars. She has lived there for a good ten years now. When I went down recently she pointed out a very distinctive boat with a red hull at the end of a row right in the centre. You really couldn't miss it. She said that she has never ever seen that boat leave the marina. It's still neat and tidy, so not abandoned, and I think she has seen the owners checking on it once or twice, but it has never ever been used (even for drinks parties) in ten years.

I spent about a decade building vacation homes. The number of customers of mine that barely set foot in their new, expensive home, is staggering. I did one for an extremely difficult, demanding couple. There was a really sweet old guy who lived across the street, and over the months of building, I got to know him a bit. A year after the PITA couple took possession of the place, I stopped to talk to the old guy. He told me that my customers never spent a single night in their new home, in the year they owned it.  that's a bit extreme, but vacation homes that get used 3-4 weekends a year, are pretty common. When you consider that for most, a "weekend" is blasting out of the city on a Friday evening, getting to the home late,  then blasting back to the city by mid-morning on Sunday. That's roughly 36 hours. If you multiply those hours by three or four visits, and factor in monthly and annual expenses, many of my customers were spending $100+ per hour of use.

jengod

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4083 on: December 06, 2017, 05:56:29 PM »
This Diderot effect sounds exactly like hedonic adaptation, or the consumer treadmill.

Hedonic adaptation is the way an individual's level of happiness tends to return to his or her normal level after a positive or negative change in circumstances: the person adapts to the "new normal", be it partial paralysis or a big pay raise.

The consumer treadmill is the cycle of working and spending, with additional work required to support additional spending.

The Diderot effect is when you buy items to "go with" another item because of a preconceived notion that they're part of a group of things that are *all* necessary in order to achieve the proper and appropriate effect. In Diderot's case, he received a very nice, fancy dressing-gown as a gift and ended up purchasing a new chair, furnishings, and other consumer goods because acquiring belongings appropriate to a man who would own and use such a dressing-gown became appropriate. I'm sure he became hedonically adapted at some point in the process, and jumped onto the 18th-century equivalent of the consumer treadmill to earn the money to pay for his new indulgences.

I'm like all of these at once?
* I get a new-to-me used sewing machine, then I "need" a sewing machine case.
* I find a couple of nice children's biographies at the thrift store, then I "need" the whole set.
* I get a cargo bike so I drive less, but then I "need" the baby seat and the sun cover and a drink holder and a phone holder and a guy to come help me fix the weird gears.
* My father-in-law gives me his old records, then my dad decides his record player is no good, and before you know it I'm collecting an obscure series of vintage children's records at $25 a pop. What?
Waste is lost profit made visible. #zerowastehome #permaculture

Reading with children pays dividends. Recommended resources for Mustachian families: The Read-Aloud Handbook by Jim Trelease |  The Read-Aloud Revival podcast by Sarah McKenzie | Books to Build On by E.D. Hirsch | The Well-Trained Mind by Susan Wise Bauer

ysette9

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4084 on: December 06, 2017, 06:57:04 PM »
Been spending a lot of time with family these pas few days and it has been interesting observing differences. My aunt and Uncle were amazing mustachians two decades ago and were able to retire early and comfortably due to their amazing frugal muscles. Since then they have swung in the total opposite direction. Massive McMansion for two people (plus cat) and the miles they put on their cars is just staggering. I couldnít figure it out st first but observing how they do regular household chores has been enlightening. For example, the cars need new DMV tags.
I pay my thingie online and get the tags in the mailbox. They drive downtown and stand in line at the DMV. I pay my bills online using bill pay. They write checks or pay cash, which of course requires a trip to the bank. They deposit checks in person at the bank. If they need some information they drive to the business office instead of picking up the phone. It is a very old-school, personalized way of doing business.

On one hand they know everyone and everyone knows them.
On the other hand, they put 10k more miles on their cars each year than me, and they arenít commuting to work every day like I do.
"It'll be great!"

barbaz

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4085 on: December 07, 2017, 12:58:47 AM »
I pay my bills online using bill pay.
The American banking system will forever be a mystery to me. WTF is a bill pay?

UKMustache

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4086 on: December 07, 2017, 02:29:59 AM »
I pay my bills online using bill pay.
The American banking system will forever be a mystery to me. WTF is a bill pay?

I have no idea but it does make me laugh that one of the most advanced nations on earth still use cheques :D

AlanStache

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4087 on: December 07, 2017, 06:03:18 AM »
I pay my bills online using bill pay.
The American banking system will forever be a mystery to me. WTF is a bill pay?

I have no idea but it does make me laugh that one of the most advanced nations on earth still use cheques :D

bill pay is a website link within your banks site.  And we now mostly have the smart chips in our credit and debit cards  :-) 
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marielle

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4088 on: December 07, 2017, 06:34:56 AM »
Been spending a lot of time with family these pas few days and it has been interesting observing differences. My aunt and Uncle were amazing mustachians two decades ago and were able to retire early and comfortably due to their amazing frugal muscles. Since then they have swung in the total opposite direction. Massive McMansion for two people (plus cat) and the miles they put on their cars is just staggering. I couldnít figure it out st first but observing how they do regular household chores has been enlightening. For example, the cars need new DMV tags.
I pay my thingie online and get the tags in the mailbox. They drive downtown and stand in line at the DMV. I pay my bills online using bill pay. They write checks or pay cash, which of course requires a trip to the bank. They deposit checks in person at the bank. If they need some information they drive to the business office instead of picking up the phone. It is a very old-school, personalized way of doing business.

On one hand they know everyone and everyone knows them.
On the other hand, they put 10k more miles on their cars each year than me, and they arenít commuting to work every day like I do.

I've observed this stuff before too. I know people at work that don't have autopay for their internet or other bills, so each time it's due they call and pay on the phone. My roommate pays his credit card bills, internet, etc manually when his paychecks come in, even if it's two weeks early. I think he has a spending problem, so this is a way of helping that? I don't know. I know he's an engineer that makes $5k more than I do and he was having money problems a couple months ago because of two traffic tickets. And he was bragging about spending $80 at a bar one night...

ketchup

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4089 on: December 07, 2017, 07:42:09 AM »
I pay my bills online using bill pay.
The American banking system will forever be a mystery to me. WTF is a bill pay?

I have no idea but it does make me laugh that one of the most advanced nations on earth still use cheques :D

bill pay is a website link within your banks site.  And we now mostly have the smart chips in our credit and debit cards  :-)
Yup, we've finally caught up with that sweet 90s tech. :)  At least contactless seems to be catching on pretty quickly (relatively speaking...).

Dave1442397

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4090 on: December 07, 2017, 07:49:53 AM »
I pay my bills online using bill pay.
The American banking system will forever be a mystery to me. WTF is a bill pay?

I have no idea but it does make me laugh that one of the most advanced nations on earth still use cheques :D

The only thing I use checks for is my daughter's school. They are still in the 20th century as far as money goes, and they want either cash or check for all activities. I prefer not to have my daughter carry more than $20 to school, so most times it's a check.

The other thing I use them for is paying for school lunch. I can add money to her account online, but they only let you add up to $200 at a time, and they have a $5 "service charge", which I refuse to pay. If I give her a check, they take it at the school cafe and update her account balance on the spot.

I just ran out of checks (last time I ordered any was over ten years ago), so I ordered a box of 200 for just over $6. That should be the last box of checks I ever order.

paddedhat

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4091 on: December 07, 2017, 08:35:07 AM »
Sadly, a lot of local government activity, here in the states, requires a paper check, property taxes, water bills, etc. The other odd use of checks in our personal life has been paying for anything related to our kid's activities like scouting, sports teams and similar. During that whole phase of parenting I was stunned by how many other parents had zero skills with handling funds responsibly.several times we were approched with, " you still owe $50 from several months ago"  only to go back home and find the deposited check, that cleared months ago. Had we paid cash, we would of ended up paying twice.

With This Herring

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4092 on: December 07, 2017, 11:21:16 AM »
This Diderot effect sounds exactly like hedonic adaptation, or the consumer treadmill.

Hedonic adaptation is the way an individual's level of happiness tends to return to his or her normal level after a positive or negative change in circumstances: the person adapts to the "new normal", be it partial paralysis or a big pay raise.

The consumer treadmill is the cycle of working and spending, with additional work required to support additional spending.

The Diderot effect is when you buy items to "go with" another item because of a preconceived notion that they're part of a group of things that are *all* necessary in order to achieve the proper and appropriate effect. In Diderot's case, he received a very nice, fancy dressing-gown as a gift and ended up purchasing a new chair, furnishings, and other consumer goods because acquiring belongings appropriate to a man who would own and use such a dressing-gown became appropriate. I'm sure he became hedonically adapted at some point in the process, and jumped onto the 18th-century equivalent of the consumer treadmill to earn the money to pay for his new indulgences.

I'm like all of these at once?
* I get a new-to-me used sewing machine, then I "need" a sewing machine case.
* I find a couple of nice children's biographies at the thrift store, then I "need" the whole set.
* I get a cargo bike so I drive less, but then I "need" the baby seat and the sun cover and a drink holder and a phone holder and a guy to come help me fix the weird gears.
* My father-in-law gives me his old records, then my dad decides his record player is no good, and before you know it I'm collecting an obscure series of vintage children's records at $25 a pop. What?

You're a completionist.  You like to have the whole set of something.  When you get an item in a set, take a step back and think if you REALLY want the item/set, or whether you just feel an urge to get the rest of a set because you don't like having an incomplete collection.

I pay my bills online using bill pay.
The American banking system will forever be a mystery to me. WTF is a bill pay?

I have no idea but it does make me laugh that one of the most advanced nations on earth still use cheques :D

bill pay is a website link within your banks site.  And we now mostly have the smart chips in our credit and debit cards  :-)

Automatic bill pay is when you set up bills to be paid automatically from your credit card or checking account when they are due.  So, my electric bill is paid automatically on the due date every month.

We do use checks, but not frequently.  I give my landlord checks (he just has four apartments, and two are in his home; it's not a big operation), and occasionally I will give at church with a check (instead of my preferred cash), but that's it.  Almost no one uses checks to pay for grocery shopping, and most people pay their bills electronically.  Though it may not be common knowledge (paddedhat :) ), most districts have online payment options for property taxes, water bills, etc.  Though the information won't necessarily be printed on your paper bill, you can find it with an internet search.

Though we do have chipped cards, I've heard that they don't work as well as the ones in Europe do, and that sometimes American chipped cards do not work at all in Europe.
Go soak your beans.  You know you keep forgetting.

Paul der Krake

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4093 on: December 07, 2017, 01:28:36 PM »
Depends where. Automated kiosks such as the ones found in train stations sometimes donít like US cards, which is why you should always have some local currency in cash. Every store or restaurant will accept Visa/Mastercard, unless they donít take any cards.

BDWW

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4094 on: December 07, 2017, 03:07:50 PM »
Sadly, a lot of local government activity, here in the states, requires a paper check, property taxes, water bills, etc. The other odd use of checks in our personal life has been paying for anything related to our kid's activities like scouting, sports teams and similar. During that whole phase of parenting I was stunned by how many other parents had zero skills with handling funds responsibly.several times we were approched with, " you still owe $50 from several months ago"  only to go back home and find the deposited check, that cleared months ago. Had we paid cash, we would of ended up paying twice.

One of the issues, at least around here, is that local governments are statutorily required to bill a certain amount, and can't move numbers to fit around card processing fees. Most (if not all) of the bills I pay can be paid online, but they have an added card processing fee. So I pay by check* to avoid paying the fee.

*Before I started making the effort to swing by city hall once a month to drop off a check, I discovered that the late fee the city charges for being one month late on the water bill is less than the price of running a separate credit card transaction every month. So I would wait two months to pay my water bill and save a buck or two.

ixtap

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4095 on: December 07, 2017, 04:05:24 PM »
Sadly, a lot of local government activity, here in the states, requires a paper check, property taxes, water bills, etc. The other odd use of checks in our personal life has been paying for anything related to our kid's activities like scouting, sports teams and similar. During that whole phase of parenting I was stunned by how many other parents had zero skills with handling funds responsibly.several times we were approched with, " you still owe $50 from several months ago"  only to go back home and find the deposited check, that cleared months ago. Had we paid cash, we would of ended up paying twice.

One of the issues, at least around here, is that local governments are statutorily required to bill a certain amount, and can't move numbers to fit around card processing fees. Most (if not all) of the bills I pay can be paid online, but they have an added card processing fee. So I pay by check* to avoid paying the fee.

*Before I started making the effort to swing by city hall once a month to drop off a check, I discovered that the late fee the city charges for being one month late on the water bill is less than the price of running a separate credit card transaction every month. So I would wait two months to pay my water bill and save a buck or two.

Interesting. I have always been able to pay these bills by ACH.

druth

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4096 on: December 07, 2017, 05:43:25 PM »
More from the future inlaws, who you can also read about here:
https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/antimustachian-wall-of-shame-and-comedy/relatives-who-just-don't-get-it/msg579297/#msg579297
https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/antimustachian-wall-of-shame-and-comedy/relatives-who-just-don't-get-it/msg1708223/#msg1708223

They just bought a brand new Jeep Grand Cherokee.  I used to think they were financially dumb but at least not too consumptive, but it seems like the MLM talk is getting to them.  They are definitely of the impression that they will be rich SO SOON so it's not a risk.  I think some of the MLM has components of "act rich to get rich".

They apparently bought it because they got a flyer in the mail from their local jeep dealer about how they could get a great trade in price because of the Houston floods.  I'm sure a flyer would never exaggerate about that!

Talk about Diderot effect and hedonic adaption, this is apparently a great purchase because now they can tow a boat and a camper(they don't have either of these items... yet).

They really were excited about the great deal they got, and their payments are only about 500$ a month! OH BOY!  My personal opinion is that you would have to pay me to drive any modern Jeep.  This is also their third new car in 2 years.  They leased a Ford fusion, couldn't afford the payments, returned it, bought a lightly used Lincoln(which is at 70k miles - the horror!), and just traded that in for the Jeep.

I'm just waiting for it to all come crashing down.  MIL hasn't been working in months because of an injury(which is way overblown, but that's another thread), she just spends all of her time suing people pretty much.  FIL seems to barely work because he's putting all his time into Primerica.  They are both in their 50s and have student loans still.  IDK how they have even held up as long as they have.
« Last Edit: December 07, 2017, 05:46:39 PM by druth »

RWD

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4097 on: December 07, 2017, 06:55:25 PM »
Sadly, a lot of local government activity, here in the states, requires a paper check, property taxes, water bills, etc. The other odd use of checks in our personal life has been paying for anything related to our kid's activities like scouting, sports teams and similar. During that whole phase of parenting I was stunned by how many other parents had zero skills with handling funds responsibly.several times we were approched with, " you still owe $50 from several months ago"  only to go back home and find the deposited check, that cleared months ago. Had we paid cash, we would of ended up paying twice.

One of the issues, at least around here, is that local governments are statutorily required to bill a certain amount, and can't move numbers to fit around card processing fees. Most (if not all) of the bills I pay can be paid online, but they have an added card processing fee. So I pay by check* to avoid paying the fee.

*Before I started making the effort to swing by city hall once a month to drop off a check, I discovered that the late fee the city charges for being one month late on the water bill is less than the price of running a separate credit card transaction every month. So I would wait two months to pay my water bill and save a buck or two.

Interesting. I have always been able to pay these bills by ACH.

Same here. Sometimes call draft or e-check. Typically avoids the credit card convenience fees.

LeRainDrop

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4098 on: December 07, 2017, 07:54:12 PM »
Every store or restaurant will accept Visa/Mastercard, unless they donít take any cards.

This isn't true in Portugal.  Many restaurants and other merchants accept credit cards issued by Portuguese banks, but no foreign cards at all.

fredbear

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #4099 on: December 07, 2017, 08:18:22 PM »
..I'm sure he became hedonically adapted at some point in the process, and jumped onto the 18th-century equivalent of the consumer treadmill to earn the money to pay for his new indulgences.

Well, in a sense he did: he wrote Les Bijoux Indiscrets to impress but also to pay for his mistress.  Unrecorded whether she had one.

A sadder example of the 18th century treadmill was Johnson writing Rasselas to pay for the burial of his mother.