Friday, October 27, 2017

Being as cheap as I wanna be.

I'm thrifty not stingy. That is a huge restaurant size can of beans I'm using to make Chili. I'm predicting leftovers.
I wanted to get back to posting on Wednesdays. However, I have had a busy week playing solitaire on my computer and making sort of Halloween threats on Pat Hatt's rhymetime blog. I say sort of in that the most important part of the message is that it rhymes.

Occasionally, I get up and do some work around the house, a bit of cleaning, pay attention to a dog. In other words, the area around my desk looks like a bomb exploded. If you keep your eyes on the screen, there is no pandemonium going on around you.

I've noticed there is a new blog platform called patreon. I'm not impressed in that I will avoid those bloggers. I feel guilty reading what they have written and not making a donation. I shared a video about a month or two ago and took the time to like the page the video came from. I noticed in my Facebook feed, the videomaker would like me to sign up to donate a dollar a month. I deleted the video.

Some bloggers on other platforms have a donation request on their sidebar. I don't follow them either. There are so many good blogs out there that I don't need to add them to my list. In my opinion, ads are the best way to make money. I do buy the books of fellow bloggers.

I pay for the NY Times, The AJC, and The Washington Post. I've made a donation to The Guardian.

Social media is a mixed bag. I think it is great when people have an emergency; others can help them out with crowdfunding.

I don't like people soliciting for money they should save up for themselves. A ridiculous request to me was a couple with seven children who wanted money to have an enormous second wedding. If that same couple wanted money to take their kids to the State Fair, that is OK in my worldview.

I feel a bit of disappointment with teenagers trying to collect money to go on a mission trip. If they feel that strongly, they can mow grass, wash cars, babysit or save their allowance to pay their way. The saddest ones are the petition to pay final expenses for someone.

I do make donations for several reasons. People don't always have family and friend to help them during hard times. This is the  blog of a man who found himself homeless, On the road with Al and Ivy I found his story compelling.

Medical catastrophe gets a donation from me. My sister's stroke burned through a lot of my life savings. She had good insurance and will eventually get disability from her federal job. But that may not happen until June of next year. A full Year and 8 months after her stroke. Hospitals and other medical firms like labs use bill collectors.

I got a nasty bill collector letter, a bill from an ambulance company and a refund from paying the ambulance bill due to her insurance paying them on the same day. Another ambulance company had some very nasty bill collectors. The man on the phone from the ambulance company did not understand why I was so agitated. He said he was sorry.

Sometimes I donate to an animal. You have to be very, very careful donating to animal rescues. Some of them are quite generous to the organizer. It is one of those facts of life I wish I had not learned. I already have a problem with having absolutely no expectations from my fellow human. It makes it a lot easier to accept disappointment.

My big caveat to giving is to give locally or to an individual. I feel peeved when I make a donation and two weeks later there is an appeal for more money. Almost all large charities do this. During Hurricane Katrina, I gave to the ASPCA and state of Louisiana. I get regular calendars and preprinted labels from the ASPCA which I toss. I did hear from Louisiana a few times for donations. I gave them nothing more.

I give to the arts. Not a whole lot, but tossing in a few bucks to a young filmmaker is good. I also buy books that I may or may never read. One time I went to a book fair with $50. The first table I stopped at had a $45 coffee table book which was great. I didn't buy it. I bought a bunch of books between $3 and $15. Spread the wealth is my mantra.

Friends who create fundraisers probably will get a few bucks from me.

We hear a lot about entitlement. I know when I quit a job to take another one. I discovered the amount of clout I had given up after I made the transition. However before leaving the first job, I had no idea that it existed. We all have a framework of entitlement. I was more prepared for old age in that I grew up lean so I learned to live on less. Fortunately, I eventually made enough to have a cushion. I'm not sure that cushion will be there in ten years. But I might not be here either.

So in all humility, I think all of us depend on one another. I'm lucky in that I can pay my way.

Asking for handouts is not a good system. It is inherently unfair. People who know a lot of people or have a tragic story that gets picked up in the news can do quite well. Meanwhile there are some who really suffer. I believe in a government sponsored safety net for us all.

The second part is that the system is rife for exploitation. I feel a bit used when someone collects money for a need and later I see them living high on the hog. I think this causes some of the cynicism people feel about welfare. I had a student with two children who lived in a better place than I had for most of my life and drove a better car than I did. However, I do believe in the welfare system and believe in the value of social programs. I did witness children struggling with poverty.

From personal experience, some hardship can be endured. My dad had a friend whose father did not lose his money during the 1930's depression. My grandfather lost everything and my dad faced a lot of hardship. He felt a little envious of this man. In the early 1960's during a real estate bust, which happens in the real estate field at least once every ten years, this man lost everything. His solution was suicide. My dad would tell this story in that he recognized his friend was disadvantaged in not learning to cope with the vagaries of life.

How do you feel about crowdfunding? I got more opinion but this thing needs to end! I got to post some nonsense over at Pat's blog.



  1. My father only ever gave to Lifeboats and that is the only thing I donate to as well except animals. I will always find something in my purse if an animal is in need. Have a good weekend Diane

    1. Animals have no voice and we animal lovers have to help when we can. I looked up Lifeboats. It is a good charity. It does not have an outreach in the United States; but, I bet more than a few Americans have benefited.

  2. Thank you for giving to the arts.
    I don't ask for any money. Whatever I do, I can do on my own funds.

    1. It is a shame the Arts aren't supported more. The value to all of our psyches.

      I've watched so many people who wait until they retire to pursue a passion and so many times it is too late. So when a younger person has a goal like making a film, I say go for it. I do think people should work to earn their keep. It grounds them in reality if nothing else.

  3. That patreon site seems tacky the right word? I'm going to give you money to do what you want to do instead of you finding a way to do it? Umm yeah right. As for donating, animal in need or someone truly in need, that's my limit. All others can go pound sand. Especially those cancer donation things. And a lot of those stupid sites are taken advantage of by people who don't need it. Help me move. Second wedding. Blah blah. Pfffft pound sand once more. I'll stick with free nonsense. People are just lazy sobs that don't want to put the effort in. One can make money with ads and such if they really attempt it.

    1. For many, it is like they don't know others have dreams too or that they think their work is more valuable than it is. I believe in people being paid. But to get me to pay for it, they have got to have more substance.

      I blog for fun. I read blogs for free that are worth paying for. However, I probably would not purchase them either. I don't have that much time. I think a blog truly helps you sell other work. There are like jillions of blogs.

  4. I give when I can to selected charities. Mostly those which step in during times of disaster or those which empower people (particularly women) to learn to help themselves.
    And to writers - because I receive so much from them.
    And some voluntary work. I have been relatively lucky and I try and share that luck.

  5. I don't contribute to crowd fund a lot, but when I do, it is usually a child that has tragically lost their life and the parents are looking for funeral expenses. To me that is the worst possible scenario to lose one's child, so if I can donate a minimal amount to help them lay their child to rest, I'm in.

    I believe God has laid it upon my heart to support youth who want to go to summer camp and on missionary trips. Lots of youth give their hearts to Jesus at summer camps and a missionary trip can be so rewarding, so if I hear of someone needing funds for such a trip or a camp, I'll pitch in.

    I did participate in funding at times corgis that needed medical care, etc., but I was biased because we had a corgi at the time. I rarely give to animal organizations, I realize there are lots of people out there that will and not do much for the human population.

    My biggest compassion is the homeless so I tend to support the rescue mission of whatever city we are living in at the time.

    Whenever I feel lead by God, I do give to various things. God has blessed me so abundantly, it is a joy to give back as I can :)


  6. I give when my gut tells me I need to help. Often I enjoy giving my time rather than money feeling this is even better.

  7. We donate to The Red Cross. I "buy" my husband a critter from Heifer International for Christmas and we donate to the food drives at our local grocery store. I donate "points" to a local animal shelter whenever I buy cat food. There are so many avenues to giving. I've stuck with the organized ones so far.

  8. Hi Ann! It's always good to pop in and read what you've been thinking about. Other than Shriners and St. Jude we donate to the local animal shelter as well as the Rescue Mission. It frosts me to see a beggar on a corner wearing expensive shoes and headphones while holding up a sign that reads: Hungry. The folks I see at the soup kitchen could use a lot more help than that guy needs - and they're not out begging.
    I love your thought about 'eyes on the screen and no pandemonium', I'm pretty good at doing that myself ;-)


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