Funny about Money

The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing. ―Edmund Burke


I’m never what you’d call very ambitious…not anymore, anyhow. But lately it’s getting to be a tussle, just to get my rear into gear. Nothing: that is what I want to do. NOTHING.

Maybe it’s spring fever. Fall being Arizona’s second spring, after all.

Nevertheless I did manage to drag myself out of the sack and wash the car before the heat came up — which is fairly early. It’s almost 90 degrees right now, at 10:45 in the morning.

…wash me, Seymour!

My enthusiasm for washing the car, even though I know I can do a lot better job than the nearest surviving commercial car wash for about fifteen bucks less, has faded to nil. And really, poor Phryne has needed a bath for quite some time. She got black tarry gunk all over her when Our Honored City Parents finally elected to resurface the neighborhood streets. Layer atop layer of dust settles on her, as on all cars in the Phoenix area. When SDXB and I drove to Prescott, we ran into swarms of flying insects, so she was peppered with squashed bugs. And some moron decided to scrape a shopping cart all along her right flank, leaving some handsome slate-colored racing stripes.

Normally I would wait until it rains briskly,  park the car in the driveway for awhile, then pull it back into the garage and wipe it down. This has the dual advantages of a) avoiding a hose-drag, and b) not even racking up the cost of city water.

However, it hasn’t rained lately, at least not when I’ve felt inclined to get out in the stuff. And the car was beginning to look pretty disreputable.

The main ingredient of products billed as bug-and-tar remover, it develops, is elbow grease. Took exactly the same amount of vigorous scrubbing to lift the petrified bugs and the road tar with the chemical as without.

At any rate, the car is now radiantly clean and the 17 microfiber rags used for the car wash and yesterday’s house-cleaning have been run through the washer and tossed in the dryer.

The eight-inch-deep pile of paper marked “Attend to this NOW” has been dusted off and finally sifted through. What a LOT of trash. I hate, hate, HATE shuffling paper.

Downloading the PayPal, credit union, and credit-card statements direct into Excel without passing “Go” will eliminate at least some of the paper-pushing. There’s not much you can do about the mounds of paper Medicare, Medigap, and Social Security send, other than simply forget it. I cram all that stuff into files, which are now bursting.

How much of this debris, really, do I have to keep? Godlmighty, there are SIX legal-size file drawers in my office, full to overflowing. And that doesn’t count the chuckablock-full four-drawer cabinet in the garage!

Alas, trying to figure that out and then, once figured, shoveling out the mess represents Work, which I decidedly wish to avoid.

…some things, you don’t wanna know…

Next task: figure out (have you noticed HOW MUCH TIME is spent on FIGURING OUT???) how to measure out the granulated chlorine I bought in bulk from Leslie’s yesterday.

You know how Leslie’s does love to sell you untold zillions of dollars worth of chlorine tablets, supposedly to keep your pool sanitized & algae-free? Well…. It appears the things are unnecessary if you use granulated chlorine and know HOW to use it.

Just read through the lengthy, extremely fine-print instructions plastered on an 8-pound package of granular chlorine purchased from Our Beloved Leslie’s dealer. Planned to use it as I’ve learned to use the same stuff that comes in 1-pound plastic packets: dump it in about once a week, all the while floating a couple of (fast dissolving!) chlorine tablets around the drink.

Well. Comes the Revelation…

It turns out you can use this stuff not just for shock-treating but also for routine day-to-day chlorine maintenance. Purchased in bulk, it is MUCH cheaper than either the tablets or the “shock treatment” packets (which contain the same stuff).

Even at the extravagantly profit-seeking Leslie’s it’s cheaper, and even cheaper still at Amazon & Costco. I just paid about $3.75/lb at Leslie’s; Amazon has it for $3.30/lb. At Leslie’s, the one-pound handy-dandy packets are about $4.17 apiece. Apparently Costco no longer carries bulk granulated chlorine — at least not in the off-season.

How much less this would be than floating chlorine tabs escapes me — the math would be way over my fuzzy little head. But since one bucket of those things costs about a hundred bucks and you only have to throw in about 3 ounces of the granulated stuff a couple times a week, my guess is…a lot less.

So the Pool Task of the Day is multi-pronged:

1. Thoroughly wash out the measuring cup used for doling out chemicals into the pool. This supposedly holds 16 ounces (i.e., one pound), but those are fluid ounces, not granulated dry toxic chemical ounces.
2. Trot the kitchen scale outside and measure granulated dry toxic chlorine into said measuring cup until I can figure out how much one pound would really be. And how much 3 ounces really are.
3. Sweep the pool and clean out the various pots, a much-overdue job.
4. Shock-treat the pool at dusk, so as to beat back the re-nascent mustard algae.

Because daytime temps have been around 100° for the past week or so and really have never dropped out of the 90s since the “end” of the summer, the water may be warm enough for a swim today. If so, it will be a brisk swim, because the nights have been nice and cool — and pool water cools quickly when the night-time temps drop. But we shall see.

I’ve been too lazy to experiment with that, too.

Next: fart with state university paperwork for a client, so I can get paid.

Then: fart with concocting a statement for another client, so I can get paid.

After that: write.

If there is an after that.

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Author: funny

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