Paul Fenn

MasterCard, Because When it Rains it Pours

I’m not sure if it’s a planned conspiracy or just dumb luck but have you ever noticed that just when you’re about to break free of the financial riptide that threatens to drag you down, everything you own suddenly up and dies leaving you with an assortment of outrageously expensive repair bills? Well I have and I am having one of those moments right now.

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It all started on Monday when I managed to lose my last remaining key to my 2004 Toyota minivan. You wouldn’t think this would be a catastrophic event but because the key has a computer chip in it, I was told that I needed to have an entirely new key made with key fob and a reprogramming of the car’s computer. Oh and I had to have the car towed to the dealership in order to have all this done. Total damage, $989.00! 

On Tuesday, I got the call from the service department at the marina to inform me that while winterizing my boat they came across a few items that “needed attention.” This is always code for “get ready, the bill is going to be a big one.” I won’t bore you with the details but by the time all was said and done my $250 winterization job had mushroomed into a $1,350 repair bill.

Furnace-Repair-MinneapolisOn Tuesday night my furnace decided to quit which made for a chilly evening in the old abode. By Wednesday morning I was on the phone with Larry the repair guy who was running me through my options. The conversation went something like this: “The problem you have here Mr. Fenn, is that system is simply one tired old horse and it’s ready to be put out to pasture.” “Well can it be fixed” I asked?” “I wouldn’t even want to try Mr. Fenn, it’s darn near 27 years old and it’s time to bite the bullet and buy a new system” said Larry. By Wednesday night I was signing a contract for a completely new HVAC system which they began installing first thing Thursday morning. Total charge all in, $5,900.

While we were mucking around in the crawl space dealing with the furnace, we discovered a leaky drain pipe. Now I probably could have fixed this myself but there would have been a lot of bad words involved along with numerous trips to Home Depot so I elected to take the easy way out and called Bruce the plumber. Total charge $450.

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I came to the conclusion that somewhere along the line I had gone to bed and woken up in a commercial for MasterCard. But instead of there being some grand heart-wrenching ending like two long-lost twins being reunited after being separated at birth, it simply went like this:

 Lost keys to the minivan, $989; repairs to the boat, $1,350; a new furnace and air conditioning system, $5,900; leaky water pipe, $450; out of cash and ready to pull your hair out?

Don’t despair, this is how life goes sometimes. And besides, as the saying goes, for everything else there’s MasterCard. When it Rains It Pours!

On we go…

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