Man Gets $16 Million Cable Bill, Puts My Money Issues Into Perspective

I’m a cheap person.

I’m aware of it, so telling me this is no surprise. I am, after all, married, so I’ve heard it more than once in my life.

Ever since my wife and I’s wedding day, we have worked at saving money. My wife graduated college with student loan debt of roughly $76 billion, so we have been diligently working at paying off her seemingly leased education.

Inevitably, though, unexpected expenses come up. Like when her car had to go to the shop, or we found some extra taxes we needed to pay, or when her car had to go to the shop, or when we had to go to the doctor, or when her car had to go to the shop (She does not have the most reliable car).

Each time one of these bills came in, my eyes would bug out. I would start to sweat and I’m pretty sure my heart would literally stop, only returning to work when my brain finally spurred it on.

I read a story yesterday about a man who received his cable bill. He dropped his $80 check (wow, being entertained is expensive) in an envelope, licked the flap, made that face people always make when they taste the envelope, sealed it and mailed it off. He then, I assume, sat down and flipped through his 27 channels of fishing to get to the channel he really wanted (Lifetime was airing an encore of Lost in a Mall with a Terrible Headache: The Rachel Winchesterton Story. The reviews were mixed.)

A few days later, he received another envelope from the cable company.

When he opened the envelope, I’m sure he almost died on the spot.

In it, a letter explained they were returning his check because it would not cover his $16.4 million bill. Yes, that is the actual amount.

According to calculations, he would have had to watch 1.6 million pay per view movies to rack up that charge. That’s a lot of viewings of Scooby Doo: Curse of the Lake.

Obviously, someone made a mistake when keying in his bill. Or this man has the worst money management skills of all-time.

The feeling this man must have had when he saw he owed more money than you can even win on a game show is the feeling that I have been lucky enough to enjoy over and over.

Recently, we cut back on our spending. Cut way back. I made my first budget, and what a glorious budget it was. Dollar signs and colors and columns and rows, all blending together to become the answer to our financial dilemmas.

Now, comes the difficult part: Implementing my glorious spreadsheet into action.

It turns out, if we stop spending money, we have more of it to pay things off. This seems like an obvious fact and one that would be very easy to use to our advantage, but not as much as you would think.

We went out to eat yesterday evening and I realized I want to do that all the time. Every meal of every day forever. We didn’t have to cook or argue about who should do the dishes. We just ate.

I know this is not a realistic expectancy, though, so we will cut back. We will cut back hard, and when we start to get down about our bills, we will remember one thing.

At least we don’t have a $16.4 million cable bill.

One thought on “Man Gets $16 Million Cable Bill, Puts My Money Issues Into Perspective

  1. What if everyone in the US who had debt (which is just about everyone) had decided to cut back like you did? No bankruptcy epidemic? No banking crisis? Maybe we wouldn’t even have an obesity epidemic because everyone would be foreced to cook healthy meals at home and stop buying soda and coffee drinks? Your plan could have saved the country!


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