TithingPosted: February 9, 2014 | |
After Mom broke her left arm in late 2012, I took over paying the few bills she gets each month. As a result of no longer having her checkbook handy, her Publishers Clearing House expenditures went down 500%. It’s almost like she felt she had to tithe Publishers Clearing House a percent of her income.
However, she still manages to slip an order in with her entry form every now and then. Each time a package shows up, I ask her why she ordered whatever stupid item is included in the box or envelop. Her excuses have been varied but almost always implicate me or Bill as the reason for placing an order. They’ve included:
- For a combination brownie slicer/spatula: “I thought Bill would like it.”
- For wood cabinet refinisher for our non-wood kitchen cabinets: “I thought Bill could use it.”
- For a bottle opener to add to the 5 we already owned: “I thought Bill might need it.”
- For a fake turquoise bracelet made of plastic stones threaded on a rubber band: “I thought you’d be able to wear it.”
- For a refrigerator banana bag that was supposed to keep bananas from turning brown: “I thought it would help you keep my bananas fresh.” And by the way, it didn’t. They turned black instead!
When the latest package showed up, I couldn’t stop myself.
“Why,” I asked, “would you order a DVD about dogs? You won’t even let me get one!”
“Because,” she replied calmly, “I thought it would give the kids something to look at when they come for a visit.”
“All Amber and Jack want to look at when they come over is computer games, Play Station games and their TV shows,” I explained. “Plus, we have the technology to order just about any movie known to man right from our television.”
“But it’s about dogs and Amber and Jack have a dog, don’t they?” she asked with a slight whine in her tone.
“Yes,” I replied. “They have three dogs.”
“Well then they should enjoy this because it’s stories about dogs,” she explained, waggling the DVD case at me.
“Fine,” I conceded. “But please, stop ordering this stuff. We don’t need it and you don’t need to waste your money on it.”
“I’m not wasting my money,” she snorted. “This is my entertainment.”
“What? Spending money you don’t have?” I asked somewhat incredulously.
“No, getting free stuff in the mail.”
“Mom, this isn’t free,” I argued. “You have to pay for it at $17.95 a pop. How do you figure it’s free?”
“Well first, because after I spend enough money ordering stuff, they send me free things. You know, like the kitchen tools I got last year. Remember? I gave them to Bill.”
“I remember,” I snorted. “It was a quarter cup measuring spoon and a plastic bowl scraper.”
“See, that was nice, wasn’t it?”
“Sure, until the handle snapped off the bowl scraper the first time Bill used it and the measuring spoon melted in the dishwasher.”
“Oh, well, okay then. But it was a nice thought,” she muttered.
“Sure Mom, it was a really nice thought to reward you with 27 cents worth of crap for the hundreds of dollars you’ve spent on all the other junk. So that was the first reason, what’s the second reason?” I asked, hoping to end this conversation on a high note.
“Oh, right. It’s that someday I’m going to win the million dollars and then it’ll all be worth it,” she said with a big grin.
I guess somebody’s living life on a high note – and it isn’t me!