Two financial issues were raised this week. One was expected, the other was a vague, ominous problem in the back ground of my life.
The one I was expecting was that I am going back to school. I already graduated with an associates degree in Industrial Electrical with some Machine tool courses on the side. This time around I am going for an associates degree in business. The reason’s for this are two fold:
1. I wish to have my own machine shop one day.
2. My dad told me that I could take over running the farm if I got my associates degree.
The financial annoyance was the fact I had to borrow from my savings account to pay for registering. (I had to go and buy that lathe last week, didn’t I?) So I owe my savings account 500 dollars now. The schedule for my savings account is kind of screwed up now. It will take 27 weeks to get back on track. Hmm…
The vague problem that finally solidified this week was the fact my dad asked me to help pay for the taxes on the farm. Now, that’s a pretty bold question to put to me and my brother. We already do the work on the farm, yet have no say in the management. So naturally we said we have terms that would be met before we lent him the money. He just kind of went quiet after that.
Now, the amount in question is about 2000 dollars. In my father’s mind, that is Scrooge McDuck territory. Ritchie Rich would pause before dropping THAT kind of money. When I point out that you could take a little bit out of your paycheck each week to build up to that I got the response, “Nope. Can’t be done.” (This is why I believe that being poor is more of a mindset, because I have saved 2000 dollars.)
Now, you are perhaps wondering, “How does a farm get to such a situation?” Ah, that is the fun of it. See, my grandfather left it to his children, so we are co owners of the farm. And no one ever thought to go to school to learn about how to run a business, so everyone is just kind of flailed around like fish out of water. They are out of their element have have been for 30 years. The only thing my dad is concerned about though is keeping everyone happy, so naturally, we’re the ones giving our sweat and blood while others “take their share.”
Part of keeping everyone happy is that we keep our tenant no matter the cost. For twenty years I have watched my dad chase him up and down the county to get his money out of him. Even when we gave him the option of when to pay his rent, that didn’t help the situation. My dad has gradually conceded every advantage to help this man. Finally, the man just stopped paying his rent, citing “Hard times.” And so, here we are, subsidizing a man that can’t make a profit with a bumper crop.
Now, I have tried to convince my dad that things need to change, but he lives in his own reality. (Founding my belief that sometimes, you have to let people royally fuck up and crash through the rock bottom of life before they realize they need to change.) My idea was to have someone take over managing the tenants account, an objective third party that could find other tenants if need be. But, I am dealing with a man that insists that the world revolves around other people.
I will play his game of chicken though. The bill is due at the end of the month. He is a resourceful man so he can probably find a band aid to patch this year, but what about the next, or the year after that?
It is out of my hands at this point in time. I can only vow that I will never be like my father. I will stand for something. I will not live on bent knee to satisfy miserable bastards.