January Disease: 3 Ways to Overcome It
“It’s the most horrifying time of the year”....so goes the song by some old white dude about that transition from year-end bonuses to new year resolutions which revolve around debt.
As we manage to extricate ourselves from the horrid and financially debilitating time known as Silly Season we are now smack dab in the putrid and pungent cesspool the financial aficionados term as “January Disease”.
Yes it is during this time that many a person , myself included find themselves recovering from December's frivolous spending spree with a harsh and sudden crash back down to earth. A time where you are forced to barter trade your clothes and/or dignity with a hwindi just so you can get into town. A time where you are forced to squeeze out the last drop of tomato sauce that you already diluted with water onto a piece of cardboard that you plan to eat while you try to fool your brain into thinking it’s a stale wafer biscuit.
Yes, January disease has afflicted many of us but as always your helpful friends here at 2 Broke Twimbos are here to provide some guidance through these tough financial times. So pull out your notepads (provided you haven't eaten them already) and take note while I list some of the top tips to overcoming January disease.
RECALL RECALL RECALL
No I am not imitating a bad call centre manager. When times are tough and finances are scant the first option is to sit down and list e everyone who has ever asked you for cash and failed to return it. Be meticulous. Make sure you jot down every debt from as far back as you recall. From that kid in first grade that asked for 50 cents to buy some Funnies to your mother asking for $5 to buy airtime, even that time your grandmother asked you to buy her medication. Nobody is exempt and no debt is too small. There is no place for decency and respectability politics when you are faced with the cold unforgiving hand of extreme debt and the possibility of your landlord demanding sexual favours to pay your rent even though she smells like a wet sock that has been forgotten under your bed for years
After listing them , call them up and in a stern voice announce that you are no longer going to allow yourself to be used as their financial cushion. Either they shape up or ship out. Be sure to do this over the phone. I cannot guarantee your well-being if you choose to relay this message face to face.
RETURN RETURN RETURN
A large majority of January disease stress is caused by the money hungry and frankly evil pyramid scheme popularly referred to as Education.
For centuries these so called Educational Institutions which purport to provide education and life lessons to the youth are actually a haven for undisciplined and frankly stupid youth who waste their parent's money faffing about in class all day discussing mindless issues like physics and trigonometry.
Every January you see parents scrambling to source money for school fees, uniforms and stationary for their children (some of which they didn't even want or like).
It’s at this time you witness parents resorting to drug addict like behaviour to secure even the smallest of loans. It truly is heart-breaking and sad. But also great if you are looking to buy a 60" Plasma TV from your best friend for pennies on the dollar. (Don't judge me, he shouldn't be having kids if he can't afford them)
So my advice here is to do one of two things. Either return your child to the hospital he or she was delivered and demand a refund. If that fails claim they the child is not yours and threaten to sue. If they demand to conduct a paternity test leave the country and start a new life in South Africa. They love immigrants over there.
Option 2 is the more practical. That is to pull little Johnzo out of school and force him to find a job. It's time he paid his own way. For far too long last kids have managed to avoid engaging in real work by using these flimsy child labour laws as an excuse! But not anymore! If your child is old enough to poop on their own and write their name, they can damn sure write a project proposal or take minutes at a meeting. Let's not spoil our kids and allow them to spend their formative years playing in the sand and racking up bills for medical aid , toys and tetanus shots. If they can play video games they can operate heavy machinery, the principal is the same.
REUSE REUSE REUSE
No I am not going to go on some sermon on how you should use your washing liquid sparingly and recycle your toothpaste. Frugal spending and responsible use of items is just silly and a myth perpetuated by the consumer police.
I have a better idea. As many of you have noticed there is a new wave of pro Black/African rhetoric sweeping the globe. In line with this, natural hair and natural hair weaves/wigs are the new Spice Girl platform shoes.
For decades races with straighter hair strands were able to profit off their unwanted follicles while those of the curlier variety were shunned by weave makers the world over. But no more my Brothers and Sisters. If the financial stresses of January have hit your pocket, take a razor to your head, armpit and other areas and profit off your unwanted hair. Granted, please ensure the hair is clean and free from musky smells before shipping. I learned that the hard way. Nothing more embarrassing that removing your all hair and walking around looking like a burned Vienna sausage with no profits to show for it.
So there you have it. Three concrete ways to ensure you survive January Disease. Together we can overcome the plight .
The struggle continues ….. VIVA, PAMBERI, AMANDLA and other such chants. Stay tuned for tips on how to manage debt with our new Phil On Phinance series