There are some people who talk to their grandparents once a week, once a month or only on special occasions. I, however, am the complete opposite. I talk to my grandparents about three times a day – making sure to add every exhilarating detail of my life, like how Harris Teeter never seems to have zucchini in stock.
Most of my conversations with my grandparents seem to go as follows:
- How do I know what type of light bulb to buy for a standing lamp?
- Can you BELIEVE that it cost this much to register your car in DC?
- If I don’t have buttercream, what can I substitute it with to make banana bread?
- Wow – Fairmont got a Dunkin’ Donuts … finally!
As you can see, my grandparents are basically my form of Google, except their answers are always a little unpredictable and more hilarious.
When I moved to D.C. on a Capitol Hill staffer’s salary, my family (Stanley included) told me that I was in charge of my own finances. I remember the first paycheck I received and how it was somehow lower than my rent. One would think that I would become good at budgeting, but in fact, I learned that another poor soul living in the city would sublet a walk-in closet from me. Desperate times call for desperate measures.
After four years, you would think that I would learn how to budget money, but, alas, I have not. On one particular day, my conversation with Stanley was about how I never seem to save any money at the end of the month. My priorities are in this precise order: rent, food, dog, food, traveling, wine, and food. Lately (read: usually), my savings account hasn’t seen any deposits.
This would bother some people, but I don’t lose sleep over it.
Most people would tell their children that they need to “be responsible” and “start saving in case of an emergency.”
So, when I called Stanley about my irresponsible spending habits, I expected a conversation like the one above to happen.
To my surprise, Stanley said the following:
You gotta have fun while you can — you could die tomorrow! Heck, at my age, I don’t even buy green bananas anymore.
And that’s when I knew what my New Year’s resolution would be: to save even less and travel even more.