Monday, 20 August 2012


Right at the start of this post, I'm convinced that it's not my fault that I have crazy credit card bills.

I remember the first card that I'd ever gotten. At the start of my career, as a management trainee (absolutely at the bottom of the employee food chain, basically) I had a card company send me a shiny new piece of plastic basis the salary I had just started to earn. They didn't care that the grand sum total of my work experience was about a quarter of a financial year, or that what I had stated on my application was an amount that I hadn't even seen in one place, as a student. Still, they loved me. Loved me enough to give me a gold card. Ironically, the bank that I worked with then, was not so benevolent - they gave me a silver, and that too around six-odd months later.

It's so much easier to flash plastic, right, versus carrying around cash? One, you don't have to have a cow about bags getting picked (pretty routine on our public transport systems here, thank you), and second, more place for the kitchen sink. That's another thing - however hard I try, the bag always has an assortment of stuff that I don't always need - but I'm sure I will. And of course, given the deep love and affection that Murphy has for me, I will - just as soon as I remove it from my bag, in a bid to lighten the load. Meh.

And so the cards live on. Of course, the downside is you don't always keep tabs on where all it's been swiped, unless you save the chargeslips. The last time I did that, it worked well - until I cleaned my bag and tore up those slips into teeny little bits of non-paper.

Worse are the bloopers. Went to purchase clothes once. And thankfully got a call within minutes of signing a charge slip from the card company, asking whether I did indeed spend fifty thousand rupees (or about nine hundred dollars) on a single garment. After I was done hyperventilating, turns out that the shop assistant (or whatever is the politically correct parlance) had swiped my card for two zeroes more. I love when they 'void' sales. I wish they'd do it with legit purchases too, as a surprise for being a good customer. But I guess that's what gets me into a fix in the first place.

Then the other time I swiped my card at dinner. And left my card at the till, so that our server returned with the bill, and some cash. A tip to the customer it wasn't, as it turns out - but a cash refund. What had happened was, since I had left my card at the counter, they'd swiped it for the next customer as well. Not that I'd realised.

Another time that I was so sure I'd lost my card. Got it blocked too, since I couldn't recall where I'd put it, when attempting to bill at the next store. Wasn't lost - I'd left it behind two stores ago. 

And after all this, I persist. And whimper in actual, real pain when those stupid statements come in. Must do something about it, really must. Like leave the cards at home.

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