Blog 2125 – 07.20.2021
On Tuesday, Re-Pay Day
Wimpy, the hamburger loving guy in the Popeye cartoons is always asking to borrow money for a hamburger which he promises to repay on Tuesday. I am reminded of the proverb: “Neither a borrower not a lender be.” One of the quickest ways to lose a friend is to lend them money expecting them to keep their promise to repay on Tuesday or any other day, you may very likely end up resenting them for not paying you back or they you for expecting them to and therefore often avoiding you entirely.
For those reasons I avoid borrowing and lending. If I cannot afford to give it out right, not expecting it back, I really cannot avoid to lend it. And if I have to borrow to get something, I wonder do I really need it. The promise of easy credit payment plans like the myths regarding cheap gas are dispelled by the hard learned lesson, “Pay me now or pay me a lot more later.” The bill for all that cheap gas is coming due and the interest on that debt is compounded daily. Nothing is really on sale that you charge it on a credit card unless you pay the balance on that card off each month before interest charges are added.
Tuesday, Re-Pay Day, always comes and we can only rob from Peter to repay Pay for so long till the note comes due in full. My dear dad from the time I was a small boy tried to drum into my head the importance of saving a portion of all the money I received. Sadly his words he was unable to back up with a clear example till long after my brother and I were out and on our own. To his credit he did start practicing what he preached then, he and my mom. My folks were able at last to buy a nice home, pay it off, have it remodeled, and kept it up till they both passed with all their debts paid, and with paid insurance policies to bury them, and even money in CD’s.
There was a saying when I was a soldier, fifty years ago, that a good soldier never checks short. It refers to all the equipment one is issued and expected to turn back in after completing an assignment. To me it has the added meaning I learned in Jesus parable of the rich man who left on an extended trip and called his servants together and trusted his servants with varying amounts of money to take care of while he was gone. When the master did finally return they were called in to give an accounting of how they had handled his money in his absence. One said he knew his master would expect him to grow that money so he invested the two gold coins left in his care conservatively with a a small guaranteed return and gave the master back his two gold coins with one more he earned. The second servant said that he knew his master was a good business man so he put the master’s money to work in business and had earned twice it’s original value so he returned the master three gold coins with three more.
The third servant came to his master with the one gold coin that he had been trusted with and said that he knew his master was a hard man so he had hidden money in a napkin buried in the ground. “Here it is, all of it, I did not lose any of it.”
The master told the first man that because he had been faithful over little and made more of it that he would be trusted to handle greater wealth and responsibility. To the second servant he said he said about the same thing adding that because he had been given more and made more with it he would be given even more to work with and be responsible for. To the last servant who had been only trusted with one gold coin, but had just hid it away for safe keeping the master said, “I will judge you by your own words, “You said I was a hard man but hid my money in the ground making no effort to increase it, to you, a lazy and unprofitable servant, I say take the gold coin from him and give it to the one with the most and banish this one from my service.”
On this Tuesday Re-Pay Day, check your accounts and rededicate yourself to getting those accounts in order taking steps to improve your balance sheet if need be. Some years ago, I had convinced myself that I would never be able to retire because I would never get out of debt. It is never enough just to pay all one’s bill on time. We have been trained by the money lenders to believe a high credit score is a good thing. Nonsense, that is the same thing as believing that getting to play a long time at a casino or that breaking even or only spending a few hundred dollars at a time (for entertainment) is winning. There is but one definition of profit as there is only one definition of winning and that is where the balance sheet or scoreboard shows you with a higher number than when you started.
I does not take a degree or modern math to figure that one out. I hope your accounting this Tuesday is on the plus side and that if it is not it will be on a soon Tuesday.
Your friend and fellow traveler,