Friday, November 13, 2015

Re: Credit

I've taken to putting most things on credit.  Some of you shriek, others not so much.  But the points! So long as you don't get lazy and wild and you fight off the interest by paying it off immediately, it's a wonderland. Or so it seems.  Most likely, we're paying far more even still than we're gaining, but that's for another day.  Today's thoughts center around the visuals for those credit card balances. Have you ever noticed that your current spending on your credit card is listed as a positive number?  Positive line item:  You've spent $505.00 so far on your card - greeeeeat job! 

But what happens when you return the $600 machine you bought last month, and had immediately paid off on your card?  Oh, I'll tell you - they give you a NEGATIVE number. Your balance is now -$95.00. They, the powerful unknown credit card they are not pleased with you. And to ensure you don't try this whole actually having money IN your credit card thing again, they'll ensure every time you look at your account, you feel terrible.  -$95.00. Negative. Just like you've overdrawn your account!  Doesn't it seem backwards people?  You have actual money in your credit card that you've paid over and above, and you get a negative.  You spend money you don't have, and you get a positive.  

Every time I open my account, it annoys me. Bad. And it makes me realize just how smart the whole set-up is.  Because seeing a negative sign in front of my account makes me feel so terrible, that if they actually did that with my credit card every time I spent money, I'd no doubt hardly ever use it! So they give you happy feelings - they flip things completely backwards, so you never have to think of using "credit" as spending money you don't have!