When I was a youngster everything was free, then I became a man and everything I wanted had a cost, now that I pay bills suddenly everything has a price tag on it, when I say everything I mean everything.
I find myself completely aware of the cost of even the minutest aspects of my daily life. I once was blind but now I see.
I know when my bills are due and have to ensure I have sufficient money in my account to cover them, when I go shopping I have to know my card wont be declined, when I drive somewhere I need to know I will have the petrol to get me home and that means knowing I have the money in my account to pay for petrol. The only way I can do this is by being aware of just how much is going out all the time as well as my estimated energy costs etc.
If you turn on a light that’s fine but every minute it’s on when it doesn’t need to be is a minute of money that could have gone towards another use. Every match lit to light a candle is a wasted match, the key is lighting as many candles with one match as possible. Every bad gear change while driving is a waste of fuel, every minute the stereo is on at the same time as the TV although not in use is a financial resource being stolen from elsewhere.
It doesn’t seem to matter how much more income you earn because the chances are your staple costs such as your Mortgage or rent just increase with your wages increase and that usually just means you have more or bigger rooms to light and heat.
The only person in your life aware of the cost of everything is you “the bill payer”, no one else in your house understands and they just think you are an obsessive Scrooge. Visitors to your home can be just as bad if not worse, even your fellow bill payers from other households, forgetting the standard cost saving rules such as closing the door when the heating is on or turning the light off behind you as you finish in a room. Bill paying visitors are also very liberal with your heating, finding the radiator in their room on full power all day so that they can enjoy the heat at your expense, their own house is never usually warm because they are counting the costs at home.
Your children are completely clueless to the cost of anything in your home, even when you show them a bill the numbers seem to shrink into pennies instead of pounds in their translation, which explains why when you give them a £20 note they look at you as if you’ve just given them some foreign currency “what do you expect me to do with this?”
Try explaining yourself to any non-bill payer and suddenly you are speaking in a foreign dialect of some remote tribe in the Amazon rain forest. You are looked at as if you are paranoid and over concerned, you become the family outcast, just a “grumpy old man”. Often it becomes an us and him situation between the bill payer and the non bill payers as if somehow those that don;t pay the bills know something the bill payer doesn’t know. You make conspiracy theorists seem tame, every hike in any costs become a personal attack on you for the benefit of the profits of some huge powerful business and no new hidden tax is hidden from you and the word tax being as offensive as blasphemy itself.
Non-bill payers are very faithful people, they have great faith that the bill paying “fairy” exists and has access to the “money tree” whenever it wants, the bill payer shouldn’t be moaning about costs considering the bill “fairy” handles the bills.
God help the bill payer if any services are cut off for any period of time due to a late bill payment, no internet for even an hour is a sin worthy of impeachment of the bill payer, the non-bill payers reaction towards the bill payer is as if the bill payer had just murdered the bill fairy.
The hidden costs attached to everything becomes all to clear to the bill payer, you know that the night time electricity use is cheaper than the daytime use and the household remains in darkness and silence until the off-peak hours, where the lights can then be used, the washing machine goes on and PC and internet use can resume once more. A great time to vacuum the house is in the middle of the night, charging portable devices on a timer in the off peak hours, 40w bulbs instead of 60w, it all comes with a price tag when you are the bill payer.