Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Stupidest Purchase You've Ever Made?

Two hawks were wheeling in this morning's cool breeze, one nearly motionless while the other divebombed..."for rabbits or kitties," Dave said, paused in mid-hammer. (Our current kitty, Big Boy, has managed to avoid coyotes, hawks and owls for more than a year now, though he no longer speaks to us. We're the food providers, of course, and the garage is mouse-free...but that's the extent of our worthiness to His Nibs.)

one more board tonight, then we put on the last round of tarpaper, the drip edge and start nailing on shingles. Finally. Yes, I sound like I know what I'm doing. But really, Dave just tells me the words and I do whatever he says. Works for me.

I had never realized that Little Brother had done four roofs in his time, including working on the house as a kid, when the folks demolished a rickety outside set of stairs that we loved to play on -- and were undoubtedly a death trap. Grandpa DeVries, a retired farmer from Corsica, SD, often came and played on our farm, combining, plowing and putting up hay. Mike said he re-did the roof after the stairs were gone.

Beats me -- I must have been helping Mom with canning, or playing with my Barbies. (Note to adult self: do not rebuke any future grandchildren with abusing their Barbies. Remember that you used to nibble your Barbies' toes off -- even the early ones, which would be worth big bucks now. If they had their toes, that is.)

* * * * * * * * * * * *

Gather Little by Little has an intriguing new post: What was your dumbest purchase?

Ours is easy -- back in the early 1990s, we invested $7000 (or so we thought) in a partial share of a wireless license. A California company was doing radio shows about bidding for these, how they were limited, going to be worth big bucks, etc. etc. We did our research -- called the Better Business Bureau, checked references, and so on, before sending the check.

I had the strangest impulse to stop payment right after it went out in the mail...but I didn't.

We never heard from this company again. We never saw a cent of that money. My only comfort was that it was from an extra-large tax refund, and we didn't 'need' it -- and we hadn't purchased a full share!

Other lessons learned:

*listen to your gut. If something feels wrong, it is.
*never assume that because the BBB hasn't heard of the company, that it's fine. It isn't.
*don't trust everything a reference says. Even the saleswoman said she was investing her parents' money in this because it was a sure thing. Ha.

I should have bought Barbies, instead!

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