When Hubs and I built the Jedi Manor, we made the bold decision to throw all of our eggs out of our banking nest and drain the savings account enough so that it echoed whenever we talked about it. Dave Ramsey would have had a heart attack.
And our banker’s wife will be spending a month in Costa Rica, working on her tan. (Oh, I’m looking at YOU, Girlfriend!) If I didn’t love our banker’s wife so much, I might pinch her; instead, I’ll just demand that she bring us back fancy T-shirts when she’s abroad next month. I suspect that she’ll relish sending us texted pictures of sand and surf and drinks with umbrellas in them from her cell phone.
Since then, whenever Hubs and I come across an extra twig or bit of cottony fluff floating on the breeze, we grab it with both hands and stuff it right into the savings account in the name of Rebuilding Our Future. In April, we may have rebuilt our future a bit too much, because we somehow managed to pack in not only twigs and cotton, but a nice alpaca scarf and matching hat, so that the nest egg would be a bit cozy. Ultimately, this meant that I put a phone call in to Hubs on my way to teach PE one afternoon and said, “Listen. I just balanced the checkbook, and…well…things are ugly, because we prettied up the savings account a bit too much this month. I need you to transfer some cold hard cash, so that the rubbery check I just wrote to the landscape company will not bounce all over their office when they get it.”
As first graders were pouring into my gym and vocally demanding, “Dodgeball! Dodgeball! Dodgeball,” I got a text message from Hubs which read, “DONE.”
And I, being the Type A person that God made me, rested much easier, knowing that the checking account was safe.
I may have mentioned once or thirty-three times on this little blog that I am ONE OF THOSE PEOPLE who balances my checkbook, to the penny, every month. Without fail. Exactly as my daddy taught me to do when I first opened a checking account back in a time before I ever possessed my single lip wrinkle.
Imagine my surprise yesterday when I discovered that THE JEDI FAMILY HAD AN OVERDRAFT CHARGE AT THE BANK! My first reaction was, “This cannot be! I can recite my bank balance from memory, which is golden and good and true! We don’t get overdraft fees! I’VE NEVER EVEN HAD AN OVERDRAFT FEE BEFORE, FOR CRYING OUT LOUD!!!” In a dramatic panic, I called Hubs and shouted into the phone, “THEBANKTHINKSWEHAVENOMONEY!!” Because online banking is right up Hubs’ alley (He’d never stoop to dealing with the checkbook the old fashioned way — with a calculator and a pen, like I do!), Hubs called up our account on his laptop while he still had me on the phone and said, “Well, what’s this major transaction HERE?” (As if I could SEE the major transaction he was pointing at.)
Hubs named a figure and asked, “When did you move that small pile of bills out of our checking account?”
People, I thought we’d become victims of Identity Theft. I told Hubs, “Someone has our banking information! I’m going to become Sandra Bullock in The Net!”
(Which wouldn’t be all that bad, I guess, because I do adore Sandra, and I envisioned my hair looking a whole lot better than it currently does. And then I envisioned the enormous task of canceling credit cards and changing passwords and taking legal action to recover my lost dollars. That was followed by the vision of an enormous bottle of Excedrin Migraine tablets. The one that’s only sold at Costco.)
…it hit me.
I told Hubs, “THAT is the exact amount that I told you to move from savings into checking at the tail end of April, when I gave genuine, backed-with-gold, American dollars to the landscapers.”
After a moment of total quiet, when I envisioned the man staring intently at his computer screen, Hubs replied, “Well, it looks like I moved that amount from CHECKING and just stuffed it into savings. It was an honest mistake.”
And then he sort of laughed, as he said, “And YOU just got a $50 overdraft fee for it!”
Hubs pays no bills at our house. Hubs writes no checks at our house. Hubs never investigates the checking account to make sure that there is nothing rotten in Denmark. It’s because Hubs has ME, his personal finance keeper, and his credit score is STELLAR.
And it’s also exactly four points higher than MY stellar credit report, which I continually remind him is a COMPLETE BIT OF UNFAIRNESS IN AN UNFAIR WORLD.
I said to Hubs, “You’re trying to push me lower on the report, aren’t you? You want to be EIGHT POINTS HIGHER than I am, don’t you? You’re not satisfied with just a four-point lead!”
And that, people, was the exact moment when I decide to cut Hubs right out of the will. He will NOT inherit the love of my life — my central vacuum cleaner.
A couple of hours later, I texted Hubs and said, “I CAN’T BELIEVE YOU COST ME $50 TODAY!”
Hubs replied: “Next time, transfer your own money!”
“Fine. Tomorrow, you can start doing your own laundry.”
“I love you more.”
Basically, this would have been a tale of tragedy that ended up with a happily ever after, because I can never stay mad at Hubs for any real length of time, no matter how much effort I invest in it. Eventually, he always makes me laugh, and yesterday was no exception. He came home and put a little Waylon Jennings on his iPad 2.
And, as Waylon sang out, “She’s a good hearted woman, in love with a good timin’ man; she loves him in spite of his ways she don’t understand,” Hubs grabbed my hands in the kitchen and said, “Dance with me.”
And so we did.
We danced in the kitchen.
The boy, as he wandered out of his bedroom, shouted out, “Good grief! I hope you don’t think that I’m ever going to dance with a girl! You guys are gross!”
So life was restored back to its level of goodness. Waylon ended his song. Hubs ended the dance.
And then he said, “I’m done dancing. Wrestlers don’t really dance; we’re kind of shy.”
Life was good.
And then I opened the mail from yesterday afternoon, and imagine my surprise as I read a letter from Enterprise.
Hubs, you see, flew to the East Coast not too very long ago, to investigate some software, because Hubs is never satisfied buying a new software package online, until he has INVESTIGATED IT and PLAYED WITH IT and SEEN IT IN ACTION. While he was there, Hubs rented a car.
The letter from Enterprise informed us that the state of such-and-such had photographic evidence of Hubs avoiding a toll booth in one of their rental cars, and, because he had been such a good customer, with such a stellar credit rating, Enterprise had paid his fine for him, but they would be charging the $1 fee for the toll booth, which Hubs claimed he never saw, to our credit card.
When confronted with THIS news, Hubs said, “I don’t even remember missing a toll booth! I think it’s a scam to get an extra dollar out of me!”
Mmm-hmm. And I imagine that Boris and Natasha don’t remember any of THEIR nefarious deeds against the moose and squirrel, either.
Hubs cost me $51 in fines yesterday, people.
Apparently, he owes me another dance.