I have my money stories like everyone else. I hug them to my chest and hold them close, treasuring them and trying to protect them from prying eyes. Sometimes, I fail miserably, and my precious stories get hauled unceremoniously out of their safe, cosy hiding place, after which a dazzling spotlight is shone on them for all the world to point at and analyse.
Today is one of those days. There’s a certain point where my money stories and John’s money stories meet. It’s a dark and seething maelstrom of twisted beliefs and painful, partly-formed ‘facts’. Most of them time, I manage to avoid getting caught up in the whirling vortex of intertwined dogmas, I know how it’s likely to go if I do get trapped in there, so as soon as I see the likelihood of this clash happening, I fire the five P’s into action: Prior Planning Prevents Poor Performance.
This time, for some inexplicable reason, instead of putting my usual preparations on high alert and pressing the big red button to launch everything in into action (Plan A in place? Check! Plan B ready to go? Check? What about Plan C? Do we have a Plan C ready just in case? We certainly do, sah!), I ALLOWED myself to be persuaded not to do that by my errant husband. It was a moment of barriers coming down, a moment of trust in my fellow man, a moment of hope for the future. I don’t know what I was thinking.
You see, I have this money belief that there’s never enough, money will always run out. I can live quite happily for. A few weeks or even months, never a whiff of a money shortage darkening my existence, and then it starts, and swear to god, within two days, I’m flat broke. There’s no money in my wallet and no money in the bank and panic begins to set in.
But then – ta da, ta DAH! Cue the trumpets and heroic music because here comes John, fully kitted out in half a tonne of stainless steel and tied to a huge white cart horse (he can’t ride for toffee, so he needs something to hold him on there), its long white mane and snowy feathers waving in the wind as they gallop to the rescue (the horse has obviously just been bathed because as every owner of every grey (that’s horsey speak for ‘white’) horse that has ever existed knows if it’s in the paddock, it will find the only patch of mud that exists for a thousand kilometres in any direction because of the drought, OR – and I know what you’re thinking here – you can just put it in a stable, right? Then your problem is solved. No! It doesn’t work. Every grey horse is genetically programmed to sleep using its manure as a pillow for its head. Or its bum, side, neck, legs, everywhere, in fact). Leaping from his snowy steed, clothes magically transforming in mid-air from noisy steel plate to suave black top hat and tails, John whips the hat from his head and pulls a rabbit out of it.
That’s how it goes: I run out of money and John comes to the rescue by - to paraphrase his favourite saying - pulling a rabbit out the hat, thereby assuring himself of remaining my hero and injecting himself with the fuzzy and warm feeling that he gets knowing that once again, he’s taken great care of his family.
All this happened yesterday: I ran out of money, John did his usual dance around his office for a few minutes (I think it’s something close to a Shaman’s Rain Dance only this is John’s Money Dance. It’s very effective) declaiming as always my profligate spending, the working of his fingers to the bone and how he dislikes having to “keep on pulling rabbits out of hats” (bwahaha!). I suggested (this was Plan A) that I transfer some money from another account into my spending account to give him a bit more time, but John assured me that no, the rabbit was already out of the hat and the money would be in my account this morning. Awesome.
I have no idea whether what happened was done on purpose, whether it was a subconscious thing or whether it was a complete accident. The thing that makes me suspicious is that this is the second time this has happened in the last couple of months: John put the rabbit into the wrong account.
Note to self: Put the 5 P’s into action next time.