A Fool and His Money…

9 04 2009

No, this isn’t a post about Washington (I’d have to title that Hundreds of Fools and Someone Else’s Money), but it is about throwing money to the wind….literally! Now, first off, I hardly ever carry cash. When I have it, I’ve got a tendancy to either leave it stuffed into the corners of my pockets or lose it altogether. I feel no shame in whipping out my debit card to cover a three dollar purchase, and have had to write a check to get out of  a parking garage before–which I did without batting an eye. About the only time I have any greenbacks on me is if they were given to me…the stash of Christmas money, birthday gifts, etc. And so it was yesterday. A friend who owed me a few bucks paid me back with cash, which I intended to deposit into my bank account right away.

I rolled up to the bank around noon, and while I normally like to give the tellers some face time when I have to make a deposit (you never know when you might need one of them to forgive a fee or something), it was cold and the wind was blowing like Larry Craig in an airport bathroom. So I pulled into the ATM…which is the last lane in the drive through. I inserted my card, pressed a few buttons, and I was ready to drop the money into the little cash-eater. You can guess what happened next. The wind whipped through and my money went airborne. I sat in the drivers seat, paralyzed, for a moment. The ATM machine was too close to allow me to open the door. I put the car in drive and pulled forward, lept out, leaving the door open, the car running, and my wallet lying on the console.  By some miracle, I was able to grab all the cash and complete my deposit without anyone stealing my car, my wallet, or the impromptu stimulus package I’d let fly through the air.

video-poker

And speaking of fools and money…West Virginia has TONS of video lottery “lounges”. And most of them are filled with patrons who don’t look like they could finance the downpayment on a pack of chewing gum, let alone put hundreds and hundreds of dollars into a video poker machine. These lounges can be quite fun, they have a law-mandated max of five machines–each of which has different slot and keno games on it. I am not one of these people who will spend the light bill to gamble, or bet the max on each spin, but almost every time I go to WV I will stop in and play $10 or $20, and sometimes I will parlay that into a $40 or $50 win. More often than not, I don’t. I may as well throw the money into the air and let the wind carry it away. (oh, wait, I did that too) But myself, along with all of my friends who play, dream of “locking up” a machine–that is, hit a big jackpot that literally locks up the game until an attendant comes to wave her magical IRS form over it.

This is going somewhere, I promise.

I haven’t heard from my crazy mama in a few weeks. When a week or two of silence happens, it almost invariably means that she is shacking up with her felonious ex-husband again and she is too embarassed to call and let me know that. (I’m not sure why, I long ago stopped making any comments to her about her unhealthy relationships.) At any rate, she gave my phone a jingle the other night to see  how my follow up with the urologist went. (It was scheduled for Monday, but rescheduled for next week.) For all her faults, she has always been a good source for all things medical–she went to nursing school, though God forbid she’s never worked a day in her life. During the conversation she said, “Did I tell you about Doug?”

Hmmm…no, last I heard you’d sent him packing AGAIN.

“He locked up a machine the other night and won almost $20,000.” 

Well, there you have it, as good a reason as there ever was to take him back for the 84th time.

Let’s not even get into the fact that neither of these people work, that she constantly hits up every family member that will still answer the phone for money, and that she routinely bemoans the fact that she can’t even scrape together enough change to get a two liter of Pepsi. What were they even doing gambling? There must be some new government subsidy for needy people with a gambling problem. So what were these two indigants planning to do with their windfall?

Use it to move to a property that has less than  her current 8 acres to maintain? Noooooo.

Set some aside for a rainy day? Heaven forbid!

Rent a storage unit for the three decades of clothing she has hoarded?  (I’m not kidding—she has turned the entire master suite into one giant walk in closet, the second bedroom has likewise been turned over to storage purposes, and there is literally nowhere to sit in her house save for ONE recliner and TWO kitchen chairs because every single other surface is covered in piles of neatly folded clothing, Nascar memorabilia, and bric-a-brac secured from yard sales, flea markets, and discount stores. She could earn another $20,000 on eBay getting rid of all that junk and not miss any of it.) But no, that wasn’t the plan either.

“We’re gonna get Doug a truck, and give my car to So-and-so, and get me something else that’s more reliable so I can come see you!”

Now what do two people who don’t work and don’t travel need with two cars?? Particularly when one of them (him) doesn’t even have a damned driver’s license? They’ll spend every last dime of it before the month is over, and next month the water will get shut  off. Mark my words.

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20 responses

9 04 2009
Noe Noe Girl

Sounds like more bailout!

9 04 2009
The Incredible Woody

I believe I would have paid good money to see you chasing that money around!!

You mean you aren’t excited about the possibility of a visit?!?

9 04 2009
Little Miss

That’s hilarious and sad (about your mom) all at the same time. I wonder if her guy is my first hubby. I recall the time he bought 100 live chickens (I was 18 and pregnant and we were living with his diabetic old grandma on a farm that didn’t even have a plumbed bathroom). 25 of the chickens died on the way home in the back of the station wagon he used to transport them. I have more….

9 04 2009
The Vinyl Villager

Noe Noe…Oh, Im sure they’ll stimulate the economy with it.

Woody…HELL TO THE NO!

Little Miss…I want more! He sounds like a hoot. And he couldnt possibly be your first husband, because he shot his first wife. LOL!

9 04 2009
dawtch

Are you sure his name is Doug, not Jeff..? That story sounds soooooooo like my first husband & his 3rd & 4th wife (yeah, they married, divorced, remarried…now they live in a tent in his parent’s backyard – you can’t make this shit up!) Why do I know what the man I divorced over 20 ys ago is doing? Unfortunately, he donated DNA to my kids…
😦
bb
dawtch

9 04 2009
Amanda

Oh dear fsm, isn’t family great!

Your ATM story oddly reminds me of a time that I lived in a gated condo community. I pulled up to the gate and there was a tow truck in front of me that couldn’t get in. He pulled up further so I could swipe my id but I couldn’t get close enough (terrible driver) so I opened the door and sort of got out to lean over. Well I hadn’t put the car in park so it rolled forward right into the back of the tow truck. I felt like SUCH an idiot. The whole front end was pushed in in a big V. I was near tears calculating the cost of the repairs as the tow truck driver and I inspected it when “POP” the whole thing just popped out. That was back when I drove a Saturn Vue. Plastic-y car bodies are a good thing.

/tangent

9 04 2009
The Vinyl Villager

dawtch…well at least he did one good thing in his life! (In a tent??? That sounds like a blog post to me…)

Amanda…LOL! That so sounds like something I would do. Maybe my dad will chime in here and tell us about the time (or was it TIMES) he mowed down the gate getting into his parking garage.

9 04 2009
Predo

Well at least they did not invest in AIG! Things could be worse!

Ah, buying cars, how cute! Do you think they can gamble with the title from said vehicles to win again? I bet they try.

9 04 2009
The Vinyl Villager

Predo, I wouldn’t be at all surprised! (P.S. Ive tried twice to leave you a comment on your latest post, but Im having issues commenting on blogspot the past few days….HILARIOUS though!)

9 04 2009
Jodi

If I knew for a fact that my kids wouldn’t ever visit my blog, it would be, BUT, I have tried my best not to say or do anything that would lower their opinion of their father…in a blog post about him, it would be absolutely impossible not to cast him in a negative light. No matter how bad a husband/son/person-altogether he is, I prefer their opinions of him to be purely theirs. How weird is that..? *grin*
bb
dawtch

9 04 2009
The Vinyl Villager

Jodi, perfectly understandable, and, might I add, commendable. But if you ever wanna spill the juice as a guest blogger HERE, well…be my guest. 🙂

9 04 2009
cuteasasa

Whoa, whoa, whoa….step back a minute. You’re saying there are people who pay back money they owe? And you KNOW them??? I am just gobsmacked!

9 04 2009
The Vinyl Villager

Asa…heavens no! To “loan” money to either of them would be as smart as burning it. You’ll never see it again.

9 04 2009
Jason

Oh, the stories about your crazy Mama just get better and better. And I’m sure you’re right. The money is probably already gone.

9 04 2009
The Vinyl Villager

Jason…it is! Grandma reports that mama pulled up today in a new-to-her bright red Pontiac. (A newer version of the same piece of crap she ran into the Capt. D’s a few months ago)

9 04 2009
dawtch

That I might take you up on…..

10 04 2009
Josh

I am at my wit’s end driving down any road around here and seeing those parlors. There are TOO many of them. There are 3 here in town (a town of 2800 mind you) and 3 to the east of us on the outskirts and 2 to the west. Not to mention all of the other cardinal directions. So that means there are 8 parlors within a square mileage of roughly 8 miles. That’s 1 per mile. Pathetic. Not to mention the ones I don’t know about yet.

There is a reason why gambling is considered “evil” – well yeah, because it’s stupid. Throwing your money away on a mere chance that you may get just a little more, and a very very small chance that you may hit a jackpot is downright foolish.

I’ll step off of my soapbox now – but it is pretty pathetic that we have so many around here. They are at every corner, not to mention the “Holy Grail” up in Cross Lanes, geez…I went in there a couple times, within about a year’s time – and I saw the SAME people in there that was in there a year before. I kid you not!

10 04 2009
The Vinyl Villager

Jodi….anytime you want, just let me know!

Josh–I hear ya! I dont have an issue with people who wanna go out every now and then and bet on a dog, or drop a few bucks in a machine for fun. But if you’ve ever been to one of those parlors (and you are soooo right–there is one on every corner!) then you know there are people in there who are no doubt putting their entire Social Security check in the danged things.

10 04 2009
trailerparkbarbie

I hereby swear that every word V V wrote is the honest truth!

Good post, V V. And, I got an explanation of why I haven’t heard from yo mama lately .

Have fun at the beach!

11 04 2009
GYL

hang on there – are you telling me you have DRIVE-THRU ATMs???? OMG – we really are in the dark ages over here in good ol’ Oz.

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