Paycheck To Paycheck

It’s Self-pity Rant Day:

I live paycheck to paycheck, having little money for extracurricular activities for the family. I can never afford to take distant vacations (say to Disneyland or the tropics), and I can’t afford house renovations that I require.

I am not poor. I contribute to RRSPs, I have a car loan and mortgage, and I pay off my immediate debts. I only have a credit-line debt, and I pay more than the required amount every month.

Besides the usual house utility bills (phone, electric, etc), my biggest expense is food. Other than that, we don’t spend a lot of money on recreation: we rarely see movies, we don’t go to concerts or bars, and don’t eat out often.

Are most middle-class people in this situation? Most of the people I know CAN afford nice recreational activities like distant vacations and such. Not me; but then, most people I know have dual incomes, which I don’t.

I’m thinking of moving into a smaller house, something that requires less heat and few renovations.

My investments in the lotto isn’t working out as well as I hoped (only $7 a week on that, though).

Online Television

TV Links:

What is this site?
This site is a place where we hold a collection of links to other pages which contain your favourite TV shows. The videos themselves are hosted on video sites such as DailyMotion and YouTube.
Is it legal?
Whilst TV shows are copyrighted material, we do not actually hold any copyrighted material on our site, meaning that we’re perfectly legal. Through being on this site, and watching the videos we direct you to, you are not in any way breaking the law. The illegal part of this, is the hosting of videos, and that responsibility rests with the video websites.

Uh huh.

They don’t have The Six Million Dollar Man. Bummer.

(Thanks, Pender)

The Tears Never Stop

iain's at 2My two year old son is having a minor operation tomorrow morning: one of his tear ducts has been blocked for over a year, which makes it prone to infection (although he hasn’t had one). The only symptom that anything is wrong is tears running down one side of his face occasionally.

The procedure:

A surgical probe takes about 10 minutes. A thin, blunt metal wire is gently passed through the tear duct to open any obstruction. Sterile saline is then irrigated through the duct into the nose to make sure that there is now an open path. Infants experience no pain after the probing.

He has to be given general anesthesia.

Being a parent is hard on the nerves.

Idle Wise

This is encouraging: Ottawa idling bylaw gets moving

An Ottawa committee will consider Tuesday a bylaw that would ban idling for longer than three minutes except under special circumstances.
…the bylaw would include exceptions for drivers stuck in traffic, as well as those trying to keep warm on days colder than 5 C or trying to keep cool by operating their vehicle’s air conditioner on days hotter than 27 C.

I think drive-thrus such as those at Tim Hortons (*gasp*) should be banned, too. It’s amusing and sad to see cars idling in line for minutes waiting for a a buck-fifty coffee. Park and walk in!

Switching To Google Reader From Bloglines

google reader loadingYes, after four years, I’ve switched from Bloglines (BL) to Google Reader (GR). GR seems a tad slower than BL, but I like its interface better.

Grow-a-brain‘s feed in BL stopped displaying URLs properly a couple years ago, such that all HTML was stripped from it, so you didn’t know what was a link; however, it works in GR.

One thing I don’t like about GR: a subscription isn’t automatically marked as “read” if I select it. I have to click a “Mark all as read” button or scroll through the items to mark them. Those few milliseconds of effort ARE noticeable.