Sif

Financial Acumen…Is That One of the Pokemon?

I don’t want to talk in detail about my economic situation as it will only lead to tears (mine) and I’d like to keep this as light-hearted as I can without dropping into an abyss of deep despair that may drag some similarly suffering readers with me. What I am going to rant about is my ability to waste vast amounts of money over a long period (a lifetime, so far) but in very small instalments.

Most people are familiar with the phrase: ‘Look after the pennies and the pounds will look after themselves’. What a load of bollocks…is what I used to think but now I’m not so sure; in fact, I have good reason to believe I could have been a millionaire (or at least less skint) had I been more careful with my pocket shrapnel.

I’m sure I’m not alone in this but as soon as I break into a note it’s as good as gone, even if I have only spent a fraction of its worth. The change I receive from a transaction is like a homing pigeon owned by The Bank of England and it will sod off back to its roost a.s.a.p. It’s as if my mind does not see coins as money, more as ballast that is holding me back, slowing me down on my journey through life. I will buy all kinds of shit to get rid of the ‘unwanted’ slummy, whether I need it or really want it. Why have I got three fidget spinners?

What I require to turn around this state of affairs and get my rightful place on ‘The Times Rich List’ is an independent financial advisor. A 24/7, at my elbow at all times, a guru of all that is money-wrangling. Someone who will keep me in line and give my spendthrift habits the old heave-ho. But I need a specialist, not one of your every day, suit wearing, financial advisor pussies that prance around office buildings or jockeying a desk; I need a proper hard-core one like Jet Li, Mike Tyson or if I can afford him, Chuck Norris.

Let me upload a jpeg for you. I have just bought another book because I’ve only got 676 waiting to be read, it was £6.99 and I paid for it with a tenner leaving me…hold on, bear with…£3.01 to slide back into my pocket. Happy days, keep it there, save it and use it toward the price of the next thing you require…or I could pop into the first newsagents I come across and blow all 301 pennies of it on sweets and drinks. Just so we’re on the same page here, I will do the latter.

This is a side story but it will illustrate how long I’ve had this problem. When I was a lad I had a paper round and it was pretty hard work. Out in all weathers, morning and evening deliveries Monday to Saturday and one round of Sunday papers so heavy that each copy must have contained at least a Wales worth of rainforest pulp. Every Wednesday was pay day and I used to get my little wage packet, feeling all grown up like my Dad, open it…and walk straight to the front of the newsagent shop I worked for and spend it on various forms of sugar. Week in, week out this happened. The boss must have been laughing himself into early retirement; he paid me and within the time it takes to walk ten paces, I gave it all straight back to him. What a massive tit.

This is obviously a deep rooted problem and this is why I need a severe, cold turkey kind of treatment. It would be no good having some fair-minded chap with a clipboard looking over my shoulder, as I blow yet more money on fast food I’m not really hungry for, saying: ‘Do you really think you should be spending that £4.50, sir? If you put it into a savings account or ISA it would mature into a not unreasonable amount by the time you are 60.’ ‘Fuck it,’ I would reply, ‘I could be dead by then and this smells so good now.’

No, no, no. What I need is some bad-ass dude, using a language I understand and has an immediate, personal urgency. A big lad, possibly trained in many martial arts and definitely one who never smiles or raises his voice. He will always stand feet apart, hands clasped over his crotch and never blink.

Let’s go back to the chippy scenario from the paragraph before the last and try that run through one more time with my new, improved personnel installed. ‘If you order that portion of soft noodles, I’m going to break your fucking nose.’ He’ll then sniff to accentuate his seriousness. ‘Yeah, you’re probably right,’ I’ll say, with a slight tremor in my voice, ‘I’m best waiting for my dinner until I get home.’ Hard bastard will nod…but only very slightly. He doesn’t do the dramatic.

It’s the only system I can see that will cure me of this financial suicide mission. Mars Bar: a broken leg. Can of Coke: internal bleeding. Chips: testicle detachment. Sky Sports Package: lobotomy…via the ear canal.

Obviously, I would need some safe words to use to take my financial advisor out of kill mode. Like I could say ‘Blooted’ before ordering a pint (or any other essential outlay) and in that case, he would step down…and not on my head. There would be a list of recognised safe words and their associated purchases, I know nothing could possibly go wrong with that setup. Safe words and their required responses are always perfect, ask any D-list celebrity.

I can’t see a fault with this idea at all. Sure, the bloke will want payment for his minder/assailant services but as long as I’m saving more than I’m spending, I’m onto a winner. So if you’re ever in a shop and you witness a bloke getting kicked in the nuts because he picked a packet of Pickled Onion Monster Munch off the shelf, don’t be shy, come over and introduce yourself. I might be able to save you some money.