Author Topic: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?  (Read 44166 times)

dragoncar

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #50 on: August 13, 2014, 11:45:46 AM »
I genuinely don't care what others think of my financial situation.

Why would I?

(And after typing that, I can't answer it; I can't think of a reason why I would, or should, care.)

Because some people will treat you differently based on what they think of your financial situation.  For example, as you well know, in Vegas the trick is to look like you don't need it, then they give you the shit for free.

But maybe you don't even care how other people treat you?

Hmm, that's interesting, I'll have to think about that.

I guess I haven't ever encountered negative treatment that has affected me, so it's not something I care about.  Most of that treatment would only affect you by making you feel bad, but if you don't care, it can't even do that.

I suppose there are times though that it could manifest as an actual disparity that results in real loss, but I can't think of a time that it's personally happened.

And thus I'd conclude that, even in the rare case that it did, it's still better not to care, because otherwise you're caring in the vast majority of the cases where it doesn't matter, and only hurting yourself.

Well lets say you want a bank to loan you some money for a rental property.  And they think you are in a bad financial situation, so they don't lend you the money.  I have a feeling you go to some lengths to portray your financial situation as good when you apply for mortgages.

When it comes to expensive clothing... yeah I don't think the expense would be worth potential enhanced treatment.  But it's a plausible reason to care what other people think.

I don't think that's a good example, as I just submit my financial documents and they see if it meets their criteria.  They're not looking at what car I drive or how I dress and thinking I'm poor.  That's the case that the OP is talking about.

I can look good on paper, but we're talking about others perceptions of you based on your lifestyle, rather than your portfolio.

Well that's not what you said above.  You might not care about looking good in real life, but if you care about looking good on paper, you still care what others think of your financial situation.

arebelspy

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #51 on: August 13, 2014, 12:15:17 PM »
Well that's not what you said above.  You might not care about looking good in real life, but if you care about looking good on paper, you still care what others think of your financial situation.

I'm not sure what you mean by care.  It doesn't affect my behavior or mental state at all.

If a certain person or bank doesn't like my financial situation... oh well?  I meet their qualifications or I don't.  But what they think about that is irrelevant, and I don't care what they think about it.

And, like I said, I've never had negative treatment affect me.
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dragoncar

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #52 on: August 13, 2014, 12:27:57 PM »
Well that's not what you said above.  You might not care about looking good in real life, but if you care about looking good on paper, you still care what others think of your financial situation.

I'm not sure what you mean by care.  It doesn't affect my behavior or mental state at all.

If a certain person or bank doesn't like my financial situation... oh well?  I meet their qualifications or I don't.  But what they think about that is irrelevant, and I don't care what they think about it.

And, like I said, I've never had negative treatment affect me.

Yes, care as in affect mental state.  For example, most people when turned down for a loan, because the loan officer thinks your financial situation is inadequate for the loan, would say "aw shucks, that's too bad."  Or, when applying say "I hope I get this loan!"  Also known as caring.  Damn it, Mr. Spock, you are still half human and should understand this.

arebelspy

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #53 on: August 13, 2014, 12:32:39 PM »
It would be good if I met their qualifications, and not as good if I didn't.  But I don't see that as caring what they think about my situation.  So an underwriter laughs and says "yeah right"... their thoughts on it doesn't matter to me.

I think I'm not expressing myself very well, but my point is that whatever some individual thinks of my situation doesn't affect my mental state.
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LibrarIan

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #54 on: August 13, 2014, 02:08:39 PM »
The area I live in is considered a nicer part of town, so the fact that I use the bus and ride a bike makes me stand out in a land of H3-buying, latte-drinking yuppies. I'm sure they see me riding my bike and assume I just can't afford a car (even though I do own one).

I also live in an apartment, so that's another strike against me as far as these people are concerned. In fact, the nearby neighborhoods are quite vocal about their disdain for my apartment complex's existence. They say it brings their property values down and brings undesirable people into the area (read: anyone other than wealthy whites). I used to jog through the neighborhoods nearby and, as a white guy, no one gave me a second thought. Then I would jog with this black dude who lives in my complex and I immediately got these looks of shock. I guess the combination of rich and racist is a recipe for disaster.

Anyway, I stopped caring what people think of me a long time ago. I'll keep building the 'stache while they keep building their debt.
« Last Edit: August 14, 2014, 06:23:57 AM by LibrarIan »

dragoncar

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #55 on: August 13, 2014, 02:12:58 PM »
It would be good if I met their qualifications, and not as good if I didn't.  But I don't see that as caring what they think about my situation.  So an underwriter laughs and says "yeah right"... their thoughts on it doesn't matter to me.

I think I'm not expressing myself very well, but my point is that whatever some individual thinks of my situation doesn't affect my mental state.

I think you're basically saying their thoughts won't hurt your feelings. 

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #56 on: August 13, 2014, 02:28:37 PM »
Well lets say you want a bank to loan you some money for a rental property.  And they think you are in a bad financial situation, so they don't lend you the money.  I have a feeling you go to some lengths to portray your financial situation as good when you apply for mortgages.

When it comes to expensive clothing... yeah I don't think the expense would be worth potential enhanced treatment.  But it's a plausible reason to care what other people think.

That's when I unzip and whip out my fat, um, balance sheet and statement of income.  :)  See how the bank perceives on that one. 

I know I've had comments to the effect of "oh, wow, considering the sizable assets you have with us, we could certainly make an exception and give you X".  More than once.  Fidelity and my local credit union come to mind.  And I don't even have a seven figure balance at either (it's spread around). 

 

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #57 on: August 13, 2014, 03:35:08 PM »
Many years ago my ex-hubby & I were buying a new car.  A Small car that was not very expensive. He had researched what the dealer cost was for the options we wanted, etc.  This was long before the internet age.  He had a master's degree in math so obviously good with numbers.  However, he worked as a tool & dye maker because he loved the work, the pay was great with lots of overtime but he got dirty at work.  So we meet there so the dealership would not be closed & he is dressed in his work clothes (jeans/flannel shirt, etc).  We tell the salesman we have to know how much above dealer cost they want for car & options & he will not give us an exact #. My hubby has clipboard & is ready to write down and we are planning to buy a car that day.  WEll the salesman decides we can't afford the car so will not give us the exact price-just saying it is around this amount, etc.  Finally we get pissed & leave. We go to different dealership & get treated well, agree on a fair price, buy a car & leave. The first dealership lost a sale because they judged my hubby based on his work clothes.  We actually thought is was funny they lost the sale & told everyone we knew not to shop there. 

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #58 on: August 13, 2014, 04:10:36 PM »
Like many of you do...

I drive an old car, I live in a little house, I have old furniture, and most of my repairs are DIY. But I'm sick and tired of everyone (family, neighbors, friends) thinking that I'm financially struggling. I am not poor. I spent most of my childhood being truly poor (well, American poor), and I was so excited to no longer be sneered at by everyone. Nope. No such luck.

I adopted a wonderful child through the state foster care system (most frugal way btw, cost about $500) which means in my state she has state insurance, subsidized daycare, WIC, and b/c she's handicapped there are automatic state disability payments (which happen to come on an EBT card just like welfare payments). So I look poor.

I know this is shallow, and it shouldn't actually matter. But I'm tired of grocery store cashiers being rude, people commenting on what I buy with my "welfare". I want to brand my networth into my forehead. Last year at her (wealthy) preschool I had to go through four "homevisits" simply because my earned income was so low.

How do you deal with the lack of social status that being Mustachian seems to bring with it? I'm not talking about people not inviting you to join their country club. But the discrimination that people who are poor deal with every day in this country.

Social status?  What?  Why?  Maybe I've got a genetic defect but I almost never consider social status in how I live my life.. and it's been that way since I was a teen.  It's not something I consciously rebel against, just that it never even registers in the decisions I make.

I would actually feel "bad" buying something or doing something just to appear to fit in.

Tai

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #59 on: August 13, 2014, 04:53:24 PM »
Are you a single parent by any chance? Because if you are you could very appear well off and STILL get extra scrutiny from daycare/schools. Many people have some strong biases.

Jennifer in Ottawa

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #60 on: August 13, 2014, 05:13:43 PM »
I find that the older I get, the less I care about what other people think.  Most people are idiots anyway, so aspiring to some level of their admiration and achieve 'social status' is an endeavour only worthy of another idiot.

Anyway, 'social status' is just another way to say "keeping up with the Jones' ", and why on earth would we want to do that?  Let them toddle off down the well worn path with the rest of the "everything is a NEED" herd and live your life on your own terms.

stlbrah

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #61 on: August 13, 2014, 08:18:22 PM »
Dressing in nice and even name brand clothes isn't all that expensive.

Its all about waiting for sales. I wear about 75% name brands but everything was bought at an extremely discounted price.

Retail prices make me cringe. I once paid full retail for 2 dress belts at $100 a piece before I knew better. I will never forget that.

Example of what I wore today:
johnston and murphey wing tip dress shoe. Zappos on sale for $100. Discover card used for my bills got me enough cashback to get 2 $50 gift cards = free
pants - levis 559. Kohls rewards card member + another coupon = $28
Express dress shirt - I pick these up on ebay for usually around $25
« Last Edit: August 13, 2014, 08:23:31 PM by stlbrah »

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #62 on: August 13, 2014, 08:59:48 PM »
I 'don't care about what other people think' because I have a whole fuckton of middle-class mannerisms and markers and demographic privilege that more than make up for any impression that my clothes or spending habits might create which means people treat me pretty well most of the time.

Jeez louise, half the stuff I see on my computer is about how relationships and contact with real people are what bring meaning to life and the other half is autism-wannabe-ism 'let me loudly declare how I don't care about what people think of me so that everybody knows it.'

Our culture absolutely lauds mavericks and psychos in our stories and there's legitimately no cooler image I can think of in than the cool kid who doesn't care what anybody thinks. Just something to think about. Not that being popular makes something bad, but it can cause it to take up a larger space in our psyche and self-image than it would naturally.


OP, you seem educated and articulate in your writing, do you think you come off that way in person?  Do you think you come off as confident and happy?  Because I have definitely seen people get treated badly simply because that's what they expect.  How is your speech, eye contact, posture, etc.?  I know it seems silly to talk about behavioral fixes when we're trying to avoid even the superficial ones like cars and clothing, but you might find it interesting to experiment.

Emilyngh

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #63 on: August 13, 2014, 09:04:38 PM »
Like many of you do...

I drive an old car, I live in a little house, I have old furniture, and most of my repairs are DIY. But I'm sick and tired of everyone (family, neighbors, friends) thinking that I'm financially struggling. I am not poor. I spent most of my childhood being truly poor (well, American poor), and I was so excited to no longer be sneered at by everyone. Nope. No such luck.

I adopted a wonderful child through the state foster care system (most frugal way btw, cost about $500) which means in my state she has state insurance, subsidized daycare, WIC, and b/c she's handicapped there are automatic state disability payments (which happen to come on an EBT card just like welfare payments). So I look poor.

I know this is shallow, and it shouldn't actually matter. But I'm tired of grocery store cashiers being rude, people commenting on what I buy with my "welfare". I want to brand my networth into my forehead. Last year at her (wealthy) preschool I had to go through four "homevisits" simply because my earned income was so low.

How do you deal with the lack of social status that being Mustachian seems to bring with it? I'm not talking about people not inviting you to join their country club. But the discrimination that people who are poor deal with every day in this country.

IIRC, you (OP) indicated that you do dress well...so not sure why so many responses are focused on dressing for less.

My interpretation of your post is that your concern is less along the lines of being bothered by trivial opinions of you and more by the continual environment of discrimination (eg, the home visits).   Which, IMO, would wear on most and is very understandable.

As far as experience/advice,   I don't think I look "poor" as much as "young."   Combining this with being a woman, I don't think others automatically take me very seriously.   I have a PhD in electrical engineering (that I earned 8 years ago), pretty serious work track record and credentials, and a fat net worth (relatively), but I'm a blonde woman and I think people see me and think "college student" more than adult.

For a while I thought that I could just find the right clothes and haircut and suddenly it would change, but this was no only ineffective, but I think put the focus too much on blaming myself.   When the reality is that I think that the fact that women are often thought of as "young" is indicative of a general subconscious societal infantilization of women.   Which, I don't think is unrelated to how others are responding to you.

So, I guess, while I do feel for your sitch, my only advice is along the advice that others have given of "fuck them."   But don't put up with it.   Talk to the head of the preschool ASAP regarding the in-homes being discriminatory.   Tell people in the grocery store to mind their own business, shop elsewhere, etc.   Dress however you like and are comfortable and don't go all "do I look poor in these pants," taking responsibility for others' miseducated opinions.
« Last Edit: August 13, 2014, 09:07:29 PM by Emilyngh »

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #64 on: August 13, 2014, 11:18:30 PM »
OP, you seem educated and articulate in your writing, do you think you come off that way in person?  Do you think you come off as confident and happy?  Because I have definitely seen people get treated badly simply because that's what they expect. 

This. 

The home visits due to low income I suppose I can almost see, but the rest may just boil down to attitude.  I'm friends with a couple who truly are poor, and while they drive old cars, live in crappy a rental, shop at thrift stores and buy food with an EBT card, they don't "appear" poor due to their positive attitude. 

Although I'm sure I've seen it, I've never noticed anyone buying with an EBT card, myself.  Aren't they just swiped like a credit card?

vagon

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #65 on: August 13, 2014, 11:28:45 PM »
Packaging sells and appearances are important to a point.
For example a good appearance will work in your favour, including better promotions (if you still work) and more social respect.

That said the cost of appearances are not necessarily huge.
The cost of clothing that fits is small assuming you dont need to buy a brand. Or alternatively buy a brand name that lasts a very long time and maintain it well.
The cost of refurbishing your furniture is also incremental and if you like DIY could be a skill that adds to your net worth via selling up-cycled pieces.
The cost of maintaining your house is expensive, but if done well will add to its value.

My assumption is you already know this: you worry about appearances so it is clear you also value them.

So then its up to you: is the value of your appearance worth the cost to maintain it?

JustTrying

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #66 on: August 14, 2014, 12:27:01 AM »
I don't care if other people think I'm poor. I think my friends think my frugality is funny/quirky. HOWEVER, I'm sick of feeling poor myself!  Just this evening, hubs and I were planning a weekend getaway, and when I saw hotel prices, I decided that it would be best to camp. Then I was shocked when the campsites I looked at were over $30/night! I said to him, "I wish we weren't poor!" and he said, "I wish we weren't poor either!" and then I had to reprimand both of us, because we are NOT poor, but we choose to spend wisely, and save wisely, which sometimes makes it feel like we can't afford more upscale things. Oh well, I'll be happy when I'm retired and all my friends who laugh at my frugality are still going to work every day!

Jennifer in Ottawa

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #67 on: August 14, 2014, 05:34:49 AM »
Oh well, I'll be happy when I'm retired and all my friends who laugh at my frugality are still going to work every day!
You can pleasure today in knowing you are on the road to early retirement.

Story time.  Technically, I don't HAVE to work.  If I didn't, retirement would not be such a rosy prospect, would be defered, and belts would have to be cinched really really tightly in the meantime.  I do work, though, and we are more mustachian with each passing month.  I shop wisely, always look for fat to trim, and bring my own coffee and lunch to work everyday. 

I have a coworker who is in his late fifties, earns less than $40K, is paying alimony, has a child in university, and buys his lunch every single day.  He hates his job, but figures he is too old to work anywhere else, has extremely limited prospects of promotion, but is hanging on for a company pension, ungenerous as it is.  The other day, he came in to my office for something at the end of the workday.  He stretched and bragged about how much he was going to enjoy his next week's holiday (I am paid hourly - he is paid a salary.  He has benefits such as vacation time and I don't.  If I take time off, I don't get paid, so I do it rarely).

I looked up at him and said "You do realize that I don't have to work, don't you?  If I quit right now I would still have a roof over my head and food on the table.".  The glower that crossed his face was completely satisfying to see.

arebelspy

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #68 on: August 14, 2014, 07:36:26 AM »
It would be good if I met their qualifications, and not as good if I didn't.  But I don't see that as caring what they think about my situation.  So an underwriter laughs and says "yeah right"... their thoughts on it doesn't matter to me.

I think I'm not expressing myself very well, but my point is that whatever some individual thinks of my situation doesn't affect my mental state.

I think you're basically saying their thoughts won't hurt your feelings.

Right.  Why would they?  OP seems to be saying the opposite.

Unless there's actual tangible harm, what does it matter what they're thinking of me or my asset/income level?  And, like I said, I haven't experienced that tangible harm, even if I have experienced some disdain.

I 'don't care about what other people think' because I have a whole fuckton of middle-class mannerisms and markers and demographic privilege that more than make up for any impression that my clothes or spending habits might create which means people treat me pretty well most of the time.

Indeed, most of us here are ridiculously privileged, so why bother to care when the tiny percent of the time someone looks down on us?  (Or even if it's larger because, for some reason, we know lots of judgy people.)
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DoubleDown

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #69 on: August 14, 2014, 01:09:48 PM »
I guess I haven't ever encountered negative treatment that has affected me, so it's not something I care about.  Most of that treatment would only affect you by making you feel bad, but if you don't care, it can't even do that.

I suppose there are times though that it could manifest as an actual disparity that results in real loss, but I can't think of a time that it's personally happened.

I've had this happen several times, where I've been treated differently, but perhaps you've never gone to the same places dressed differently in order to have it occur? I agree with you about not caring about what the people think, but I've definitely received better or worse treatment based on my appearance.

Example: I once went to a customer service center at a large retail outlet in shorts and a T-shirt, unshaved, and waited around several minutes for someone to assist. I finally flagged the person down, and they reluctantly helped. I went back at the exact same time the very next day, but this time after work and dressed in a suit, polished dress shoes, and shaved. This time I was immediately greeted by the very same customer service person, who swooped in to help. He did not even recognize me from the day before (he did not even remember the situation until I told them I was following up on the previous day's matter, and had to re-explain the situation). The attitude and the resulting service I got was the difference between night and day.

BaldingStoic

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #70 on: August 14, 2014, 02:07:54 PM »
I encourage you to read Stoic Joy.  MMM has a good review of the book and it directly addresses your concern.  Focus on living the best, most enjoyable, life you can, while nurturing your child.  Don't focus on the trivialities like a rude cashier.   

MoneyCat

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #71 on: August 16, 2014, 11:02:27 PM »
Don't forget that looking poor can also be beneficial.  My neighbors gave me a large number of garden tools and equipment for free, probably because they think I am poor.  My garden cost almost nothing this year.

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #72 on: August 17, 2014, 03:05:39 AM »
OP you have two productive choices (the unproductive one being to get mad and do nothing):
  • Change how you feel about the treatment
  • Educate these individuals such that they change how they treat you
If opting for two:
  • Store clerks: I would write a letter to the manager, requesting a meeting regarding their customer service.  I would be upfront (to make them feel bad) and say that as a customer, you expect to be treated the same regardless of payment method and you are disappointed that has not been the case here.  I would say that you adopted a foster child with special needs who is entitled to certain benefits based on this status, including EBT.   Explain that on multiple occasions store clerks have negatively commented on the items you are purchasing, which you feel is entitely inappropriate if you are buying items legally permitted by the program.  Request that additional customer service training is provided to all employeees.  Reiterate you would like an in-person meeting with the store manager to discuss this issue and offer a few times.  And then after your meeting, the next time it happens, immediately request to speak with their supervisor, and even if you feel like a heel with everyone waiting (they can listen and learn too or go to a different line), make a point of reiterating your complaint right then and there.
  • School: I would similarly write a letter to the principal.  I would first ask them if they believe in treating all children equally (negotiating tactic to ask a question which they are bound to agree with you on).  I would then request a meeting to discuss your concerns regarding the discriminatory treatment you have received, based on your perceived income and ability to pay for services.  I would state that you appreciate their terrific response to your daughter's disability, but then continue to say that you are disappointed that their other policies do not match their non-discrimination policy (which I am assuming they have).  Say that their policy on home visits should be blind income, perhaps adding that is because a child can be abused in high income family as well as a low income family (and often is more likely to be ignored or glossed over in those instances).  Add that even if they believe that this discrimination is acceptable and a wealthier family should not be monitored as closely, that their policy does not take into consideration other forms of income, such as rental properties or other forms of passive income which you yourself support yourself through.  Conclude by saying that while you recognize that your situation is perhaps unusual, having adopted a foster child with special needs who is entitled to certain benefits (such as the program that pays for the school), you still believe that all children, regardless of their background, should be treated equally and you are concerned that the schools seems to have adopted policies that contradict this.  Conclude by requesting a review of their policies - and that meeting.  And then meet with them and make them defend discriminatory policies directly to you (where you again remind them she is a foster child with special needs.  Lay it on heavy if need be "I could have had my own child, but I felt that it was important to take in a child who needed me, and who needs a parent more than a foster child with special needs?  While I did not expect parenting her to be easy, I never dreamed the hardest part would be fighting for her to be treated equally as a child without these challenges.  I hope you will work with me to eliminate these obstacles and differential treatment."

This... With the addition that when the discrimination is irregular / unexpected (I.e cashiers) I would practice changing how I feel about the treatment (I get delayed outrage). Where the discrimination is systematic, like the school, I would follow commoncents advice - also requesting information on why you are continually targeted and how long will it carry on for.

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #73 on: August 17, 2014, 10:04:04 AM »
I am not really all that concerned with my appearance, but I have figured out that you can put a small amount of effort to meet whatever base level is deemed acceptable socially.  I wear nice new clothes to work but my polo's are off brands or off the 70% rack.  I drive a nice car (acura) but it gets good gas mileage and is >10 yrs old.  I live in a normal suburb community but chose to buy a foreclosure and fix it up, etc.

I realize that it is important to play the game somewhat, but you can do so without that much effort.

Matte

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #74 on: August 17, 2014, 01:10:05 PM »
I agree with the letter writing to the owners/managers of businesses if you feel blatantly midtreeted. They really respond quickly if you post it on their stores social media.  We just did that to a winery that treated us poorly, the owners met us and apologized the same day. 

Being 25, and not a fancy dresser type I get treated like I have no money... Especially in Vancouver where 90% of wealth is property bought long ago or foreign. 

I have owned my (now half million dollar) house for 5 years and when I host parties people I don't know too well ask where my parents are lol.  Its good cuz door to door salesmen ask for my parents too. 

Zamboni

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #75 on: August 17, 2014, 02:41:35 PM »
Another Chime for CommonCents suggestions, especially regarding the school.  They are being jackasses, and they need to be told this as eloquently as possible, probably in writing after some meetings.  We had our children in a similar private preschool, but had to bail after just one year bc I just didn't like the people.  I understand you are stuck there because of special circumstances, but tell them that!  Christ they are acting like it is some big priveledge to go to that school and that those who are not worthy shall be barred from passage through the gates.

In terms of the cashiers and other people in line, I have a feeling you are being more sensitive to body language than actual comments.  Is that correct?  This is completely understandable as 90%+ of human communication is nonverbal.  It would make it harder to write that letter that could rationally explain the situation to the manager.  My approach would be to inform every cashier or other shopper who is giving me any negative expression all about my wonderful child, and what a blessing it is that the state can provide some funds for the disabled.  I would only do this when the child was not with me, of course. (btw, my brother has 4 adopted special needs children; you are both saints.)  Besides giving you something to do other than worry about what they think, it might make them think before they judge the next person who comes through the line with one of those cards.  I realize this will get old after awhile, but I bet you'll get really good at perfecting what to say with practice!

BlueHouse

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #76 on: August 17, 2014, 10:01:41 PM »

In terms of the cashiers and other people in line, I have a feeling you are being more sensitive to body language than actual comments.  Is that correct?  This is completely understandable as 90%+ of human communication is nonverbal.  It would make it harder to write that letter that could rationally explain the situation to the manager.  My approach would be to inform every cashier or other shopper who is giving me any negative expression all about my wonderful child, and what a blessing it is that the state can provide some funds for the disabled.  I would only do this when the child was not with me, of course. (btw, my brother has 4 adopted special needs children; you are both saints.)  Besides giving you something to do other than worry about what they think, it might make them think before they judge the next person who comes through the line with one of those cards.  I realize this will get old after awhile, but I bet you'll get really good at perfecting what to say with practice!
We were in a fancy dress store buying my prom dress and the snooty sales lady looked askance when grandmama asked the price. Grandmother looked her dead in the eyes and responded in her most condescending voice "I notice you're working for a living honey".   Still love that almost 1/4 century later! 

missj

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #77 on: August 18, 2014, 01:08:36 AM »
The best revenge is living well.  Consider if you were a secret agent, spy whatever and you have this awesome job make a ton of dough and totally deadly with your bare hands, but you have to put on this show of being a florist, paper salesman, insurance agent whatever.

One day you get to check out, and they get to keep working, and judging their customers.

You can also pretty woman their asses!  "Excuse me miss.  You work on Commission, right?  Big Mistake.  Huge!"

But in all seriousness...it's amazing the trends at my work.   let me tell you what is parked in our employee parking lot

$18-20 an hour employees drive:
2010 BMW
2008 Big Ford Truck
2013 Toyota Mini Van
2008 Honda Civic
2013 Chevy SUV of some kind
2011 4 Runner
1980s Suburban
2012 Audi Sedan
2012 Tahoe
2011 Kia SUV

and most of them show up every morning with a designer latte

the $40 an hour employees drive
2013 Subaru Forester
2010 Subaru Forester
2005 Toyota Camry
2009 4 Runner


The $120 an hour employees (doctors) drive
2012 Subaru Outback
2011 Ford Mustang
2009 Big ford truck
2010 Kia Sedan

And every single day during our lunch hour the lunch room is filled with just the $40-$120 an hour employees and maybe 1 or 2 of the $20 an hour employees.  The rest of the lowest earners in the office go out to eat almost every day!

It's weird. It's like the lower the wage directly relates to how "flashy" the lifestyle looks (with some exceptions).

Captain and Mrs Slow

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #78 on: August 18, 2014, 05:22:23 AM »
Quote
Well lets say you want a bank to loan you some money for a rental property.  And they think you are in a bad financial situation, so they don't lend you the money.....


That's another mis-truth outright lie from the right wing echo chamber. Banks simply LOVE customers on the edge, the closer the bankruptcy the more your TBTF bank wants to lend you money and the more money you borrow the more they make. Of course if the whole mess goes bad than the taxpayer picks up the bill!

I highly suggust reading The Two Income trap, that book changed my whole thinking on PF

Rob


Astromarine

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #79 on: August 18, 2014, 05:32:39 AM »
Being Portuguese and Engineers (read: jeans and gaming t-shirts) me and my wife went into a bank here in Switzerland to buy our first house, around 2005. We'd been banking there for a while but strictly retail, never had talked to our "advisor".

We go in, ask if he knows any English please, we're interested in a mortgage but don't speak German very well. unfortunately, he speaks very little, broken english, and looks apologetic. Bummer.

That is, until he goes out of the meeting room to fetch our asset statements. When he comes back, he speak fluent, barely accented English. Me and the missus still joke about it, how the express language courses at UBS must be *terrific*.

ender

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #80 on: August 18, 2014, 06:06:01 AM »
Many years ago my ex-hubby & I were buying a new car.  A Small car that was not very expensive. He had researched what the dealer cost was for the options we wanted, etc.  This was long before the internet age.  He had a master's degree in math so obviously good with numbers.  However, he worked as a tool & dye maker because he loved the work, the pay was great with lots of overtime but he got dirty at work.  So we meet there so the dealership would not be closed & he is dressed in his work clothes (jeans/flannel shirt, etc).  We tell the salesman we have to know how much above dealer cost they want for car & options & he will not give us an exact #. My hubby has clipboard & is ready to write down and we are planning to buy a car that day.  WEll the salesman decides we can't afford the car so will not give us the exact price-just saying it is around this amount, etc.  Finally we get pissed & leave. We go to different dealership & get treated well, agree on a fair price, buy a car & leave. The first dealership lost a sale because they judged my hubby based on his work clothes.  We actually thought is was funny they lost the sale & told everyone we knew not to shop there.

Nearly the same thing happened to me.

After the second time they gave me some stupid monthly payment number, I asked the car salesman to let me show him how an amortization table worked. I pulled up Excel on his computer, put in some numbers, which happened to result in nearly exactly the monthly payment they were offering, and said "I know how to calculate a monthly payment, I want to know the price of the car, which is THIS number."

The poor salesman was really surprised but the next offer they gave me was an actual number.

Meh. I decided then to dress up somewhat for the next time I go buy a car.

happy

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #81 on: August 18, 2014, 06:16:15 AM »
Here's my story.. Several times in these numerous posts I refer to being derided by my family for being cheap.

Yes I have suffered this derision for years.. However when you finally do walk out the door at a young age and you just know people can't quite believe you can afford to do it.

Well.. Priceless..:)

http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/share-your-badassity/i-retired-today!-)/

This comes closest to what I want to say.

For me, at least, being frugal, looking poorer than my SES and benefits previously was associated with shame. I felt ashamed I couldn't live to the standard that was expected of someone of my profession. (Hence as soon as  my finances improved I escalated my spending).

The whole early retirement movement was incredibly liberating. There's no shame in voluntary simplicity, and indeed my FI plans are a bit of a delicious secret. Once I dissociated from shame in my mind, I have had no problem with "living beneath my station".

edit :corrected the auto correct
« Last Edit: August 19, 2014, 03:46:40 AM by happy »

Captain and Mrs Slow

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #82 on: August 18, 2014, 06:34:13 AM »
Two thoughts on the OP

1. the GOP base is mostly white poor mostly rural who spend all day in the right wing echo chamber, so when the OP presents her "food stamps" debit card (that it isn't doesn't matter) the voice of Rush the Mouth Limbaugh pops up and reminders them that this "loser" is sponging off her hard earned tax dollars. thus earning his derision. It is probably useless to argue any different.

2. Please don't be offended by this but my guess is the OP is a very frumpy dresser. I found this comments in the other thread.

 "clothes that generally give off a thrift store vibe"
"we were sitting there in the same dirty camping clothes we had worn for days"
"I carry the same work bag with frayed handles for years on end"

To be honest I simply don't understand how people can take pride in looking dumpy and out of style. My working class sister in law, husband barely earns enough to pay the bills is great example of cheap chic. On a recent trip to Finland (for a family wedding) she absolutely blew me away, in 8 days she never wore the same outfit twice and always looked like a million bucks!

All her clothes from Value Village, the only difference from anyone else shopping there is she took great pride in looking good.

One doesn't need to spend much, or anything at all to look classy!

RootofGood

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #83 on: August 18, 2014, 10:53:17 AM »
We had the poor look yesterday while shopping for a mattress.  I pulled up to the completely empty parking lot at the mattress store in my 14 year old honda civic that needs a paint job or at least a thorough washing.  The sole saleslady saw me get out of the car in cargo shorts, ruffled collar shirt and sandals.  We were shown the lower end mattresses immediately and didn't have to deal with any sales pitches for why $4000 mattresses are superior to $800 mattresses. 


Cheddar Stacker

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #84 on: August 18, 2014, 10:56:52 AM »
We had the poor look yesterday while shopping for a mattress.  I pulled up to the completely empty parking lot at the mattress store in my 14 year old honda civic that needs a paint job or at least a thorough washing.  The sole saleslady saw me get out of the car in cargo shorts, ruffled collar shirt and sandals.  We were shown the lower end mattresses immediately and didn't have to deal with any sales pitches for why $4000 mattresses are superior to $800 mattresses.

Well played sir.

kyanamerinas

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #85 on: August 18, 2014, 11:12:41 AM »
i've had several irritating experiences with looking 'poor'. once when shopping for an evening dress in a shop which considers itself posh (but is mainly just overpriced) the sales assistant actually wouldn't let me try on more dresses (i'd try on 2 or 3) because she said i was just 'playing dress up'. their loss. have never considered buying from them again.
another time i was looking for a ring for a big birthday (present from grandparents) and wandered into a jewellery shop to ask what they had. the assistant promptly escorted me outside telling me the kind of thing i wanted was in the window (the cheaper stuff was in the window).
both times i was wearing clean, neat jeans and a top. nothing dirty or inappropriate, just not smart or girly.

aflacnerd

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #86 on: August 18, 2014, 01:53:56 PM »
I don't know if its me or if this is a common thing. We were not born and raised in the US, moved here 15 years ago.
But I always get the " These people are cheap" vibe from sales people.

Yesterday we were in target an item was an onesale, when the cashier rang it up it showed full price.
I said it was on sale for almost half the price .Nothing was said but the look on her face said it all.
I declined to buy it and walked out the door.

blackomen

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #87 on: August 19, 2014, 08:23:11 AM »
I don't know if its me or if this is a common thing. We were not born and raised in the US, moved here 15 years ago.
But I always get the " These people are cheap" vibe from sales people.

Yesterday we were in target an item was an onesale, when the cashier rang it up it showed full price.
I said it was on sale for almost half the price .Nothing was said but the look on her face said it all.
I declined to buy it and walked out the door.

I, too, am born outside the US and I do that all the time..  not because I can't afford thd higher price but I'm disgusted by the dishonesty in pricing.

CommonCents

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #88 on: August 19, 2014, 08:35:54 AM »
I don't know if its me or if this is a common thing. We were not born and raised in the US, moved here 15 years ago.
But I always get the " These people are cheap" vibe from sales people.

Yesterday we were in target an item was an onesale, when the cashier rang it up it showed full price.
I said it was on sale for almost half the price .Nothing was said but the look on her face said it all.
I declined to buy it and walked out the door.

I, too, am born outside the US and I do that all the time..  not because I can't afford thd higher price but I'm disgusted by the dishonesty in pricing.

There's a lot of moving parts that need to happpen to get pricing right in the computers.  I doubt it was dishonesty, and believe it was likely an error.  Luckily, there are many consumer protections which help in situations like this to ensure you get the lowest price (plus in some cases 10% of the difference - varies based on state/product/store policies).  You just need to have the time and desire to speak up for it.  More people should.  I do.  Growing a thick skin as you wait for them to do a price check or double check your coupon etc. is quite beneficial for your stash.

Zelda01

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #89 on: August 19, 2014, 08:39:36 AM »
But in all seriousness...it's amazing the trends at my work.   let me tell you what is parked in our employee parking lot

$18-20 an hour employees drive:
2010 BMW
2008 Big Ford Truck
2013 Toyota Mini Van
2008 Honda Civic
2013 Chevy SUV of some kind
2011 4 Runner
1980s Suburban
...
Missj - How is it you know the exact year of almost every vehicle?  You may be guessing.  But if not, I am very impressed ;)

Bob W

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #90 on: August 19, 2014, 09:34:17 AM »
I live in a part of the country where the richest men in the county wear well worn overalls, drive beat up 20 year old pick up trucks and have dirt on their boots.

By contrast, I generally assume that people who live in uber fancy houses, drive 75K cars and golf too much are up to their eyeballs in debt.

One easy solution for your perception dilemma is to shop at upscale thrift stores as I do for my office clothes.  I can buy an entire outfit (shirt, pants, shoes) for under 10 bucks.  They often are unworn and designer labels.   

Regarding the car --  I just recently passed along my Toyota Camry, 01,  375K miles and beat to shit.  I feel so much better driving the gas guzzling 99 Mountaineer, 265K in decent shape.   

Your health is weirdly influenced by the car you drive. (google it)  The look of your car effects testosterone and hormone levels.   

So IMO,  get yourself $200 and splurge at the thrift store on some nice clothes.  If your car is ratty, sell or trade it for a less ratty cheap car or go for the deal mentioned on the forums regarding the Nissan Leaf.   

If you have energy get yourself a dealers license.   You can then buy cars wholesale at auction and sell them.  So that you are always driving a nice car and making a profit while having fun.

Regarding your house.  If you live in an inexpensive neighborhood,  IMO,  you should make every effort to have the nicest most cared for house on the block. (really any neighborhood for that matter)  Make your curb appeal awesome.  Manicure your lawn to perfection (not expensive and a great hobby).  Same with the interior.

I think the appeal thing about some of Mustachian thinking is to live a bountiful life at a much lower cost than everyone else.   MMM lives in a presentable nice house and I assure you his wife dresses nicely.  He dresses ratty as he is a carpenter by trade.   

No one ever said this is a vow of poverty.  On the contrary,  it is a vow of thoughtful abundance.

But if you like (and I think you secretly may) dressing poor while thinking about your net worth, as if you are putting something over on someone.  Then you go for it!

I often enjoy that game myself.  Especially with my wife's relatives who drive fancy cars, eat out often and are up to their eyeballs in debt!  lol

ketchup

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #91 on: August 19, 2014, 09:49:36 AM »
Your health is weirdly influenced by the car you drive. (google it)  The look of your car effects testosterone and hormone levels.
I really like the rest of your post, but this part is very intriguing (Google didn't help me, unfortunately).  I drive a '99 manual-everything 156k-mile Metro with no clearcoat left on the hood (the rest is still shiny but denty), are you saying my testosterone could be EVEN HIGHER if I had a fancier car?

However, I've noticed that whenever I drive my GF's sister's zero-visibility, uncomfortable, not-for-people-above-5'8", CVT shiny white Prius C I feel like a giant wimp.

(I joke, but I'm legitimately curious about what you said.)

EarlyRetirementGuy

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #92 on: August 19, 2014, 09:55:27 AM »
But if you like (and I think you secretly may) dressing poor while thinking about your net worth, as if you are putting something over on someone.  Then you go for it!

I shall admit to enjoying this sometimes myself. I almost get caught occasionally though when in a group of friends all moaning about the high costs of petrol (gas) or insane house prices turn to me and ask my views on it... assuming i'd be financially struggling with such things as well.

blackomen

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #93 on: August 19, 2014, 10:24:50 AM »
I don't know if its me or if this is a common thing. We were not born and raised in the US, moved here 15 years ago.
But I always get the " These people are cheap" vibe from sales people.

Yesterday we were in target an item was an onesale, when the cashier rang it up it showed full price.
I said it was on sale for almost half the price .Nothing was said but the look on her face said it all.
I declined to buy it and walked out the door.

I, too, am born outside the US and I do that all the time..  not because I can't afford thd higher price but I'm disgusted by the dishonesty in pricing.

There's a lot of moving parts that need to happpen to get pricing right in the computers.  I doubt it was dishonesty, and believe it was likely an error.  Luckily, there are many consumer protections which help in situations like this to ensure you get the lowest price (plus in some cases 10% of the difference - varies based on state/product/store policies).  You just need to have the time and desire to speak up for it.  More people should.  I do.  Growing a thick skin as you wait for them to do a price check or double check your coupon etc. is quite beneficial for your stash.

Most of the time,  walking away because of a misprint prompts the sales staff to recheck the price and I'll usually stay..

PloddingInsight

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #94 on: August 19, 2014, 10:27:58 AM »
1. the GOP base is mostly white poor mostly rural who spend all day in the right wing echo chamber, so when the OP presents her "food stamps" debit card (that it isn't doesn't matter) the voice of Rush the Mouth Limbaugh pops up and reminders them that this "loser" is sponging off her hard earned tax dollars. thus earning his derision. It is probably useless to argue any different.

Yeah, it's crazy annoying how these people use partisan politics as their filter to explain and understand the world.

Kind of like how you just did.

Angie55

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #95 on: August 19, 2014, 10:32:40 AM »
I don't know if its me or if this is a common thing. We were not born and raised in the US, moved here 15 years ago.
But I always get the " These people are cheap" vibe from sales people.

Yesterday we were in target an item was an onesale, when the cashier rang it up it showed full price.
I said it was on sale for almost half the price .Nothing was said but the look on her face said it all.
I declined to buy it and walked out the door.

I, too, am born outside the US and I do that all the time..  not because I can't afford thd higher price but I'm disgusted by the dishonesty in pricing.

There's a lot of moving parts that need to happpen to get pricing right in the computers.  I doubt it was dishonesty, and believe it was likely an error.  Luckily, there are many consumer protections which help in situations like this to ensure you get the lowest price (plus in some cases 10% of the difference - varies based on state/product/store policies).  You just need to have the time and desire to speak up for it.  More people should.  I do.  Growing a thick skin as you wait for them to do a price check or double check your coupon etc. is quite beneficial for your stash.

Most of the time,  walking away because of a misprint prompts the sales staff to recheck the price and I'll usually stay..

I've been a cashier for several years in the past. Yes, the face is usually of disgust if the difference is above a certain amount. Its not because of how you look but the extra work involved. If its something they need to check or get managers approval its a pain to confirm the price. I usually assume the customer is right but finding an extra employee to go verify or get mangers approval can take awhile, make all the customers behind you annoyed, and in general is a pain. So the look of disgust is usually more of a "ugh why can't this be simpler".

missj

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #96 on: August 19, 2014, 02:12:23 PM »
But in all seriousness...it's amazing the trends at my work.   let me tell you what is parked in our employee parking lot

$18-20 an hour employees drive:
2010 BMW
2008 Big Ford Truck
2013 Toyota Mini Van
2008 Honda Civic
2013 Chevy SUV of some kind
2011 4 Runner
1980s Suburban
...
Missj - How is it you know the exact year of almost every vehicle?  You may be guessing.  But if not, I am very impressed ;)

I'm guessing except for the newest ones where they bragged about buying it.  I've worked here years and there are only about 20 of us, so it's pretty easy to tell when somebody gets a new car.

aflacnerd

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #97 on: August 19, 2014, 06:14:57 PM »
I don't know if its me or if this is a common thing. We were not born and raised in the US, moved here 15 years ago.
But I always get the " These people are cheap" vibe from sales people.

Yesterday we were in target an item was an onesale, when the cashier rang it up it showed full price.
I said it was on sale for almost half the price .Nothing was said but the look on her face said it all.
I declined to buy it and walked out the door.

I, too, am born outside the US and I do that all the time..  not because I can't afford thd higher price but I'm disgusted by the dishonesty in pricing.

There's a lot of moving parts that need to happpen to get pricing right in the computers.  I doubt it was dishonesty, and believe it was likely an error.  Luckily, there are many consumer protections which help in situations like this to ensure you get the lowest price (plus in some cases 10% of the difference - varies based on state/product/store policies).  You just need to have the time and desire to speak up for it.  More people should.  I do.  Growing a thick skin as you wait for them to do a price check or double check your coupon etc. is quite beneficial for your stash.

Most of the time,  walking away because of a misprint prompts the sales staff to recheck the price and I'll usually stay..

I've been a cashier for several years in the past. Yes, the face is usually of disgust if the difference is above a certain amount. Its not because of how you look but the extra work involved. If its something they need to check or get managers approval its a pain to confirm the price. I usually assume the customer is right but finding an extra employee to go verify or get mangers approval can take awhile, make all the customers behind you annoyed, and in general is a pain. So the look of disgust is usually more of a "ugh why can't this be simpler".

Thanks for the clarification.
Just to clarify the sale was on thier weekly circular and I even showed her that. Still ended up getting an attitude and I walked out. We were with our 4 year old and that was one of the reasons why I just walked out. Other wise I would have made it a point to give her a piece of my mind. I have done it in the past. Again we are not asking for handouts we are trying to save money.

Zelda01

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #98 on: August 19, 2014, 06:30:48 PM »
But in all seriousness...it's amazing the trends at my work.   let me tell you what is parked in our employee parking lot
...
Missj - How is it you know the exact year of almost every vehicle?  You may be guessing.  But if not, I am very impressed ;)
I'm guessing except for the newest ones where they bragged about buying it.  I've worked here years and there are only about 20 of us, so it's pretty easy to tell when somebody gets a new car.
I had to look up most of those vehicles you mention, to see their prices - having no idea what most of them look like or cost.  This makes me very glad I don't work in an office - no pressure to buy an expensive car. 

It looks like the lower-salaried people also buy vehicles more frequently.  How often would you guess they buy?  Do they even wait to pay off the previous car?

PMG

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Re: Tired of looking poor and getting angry. Anyone else?
« Reply #99 on: August 19, 2014, 06:31:57 PM »
Thought the OP would enjoy this article. 
http://www.theonion.com/articles/woman-a-leading-authority-on-what-shouldnt-be-in-p,35922/

strength to you. 

-pmg