I saw a nice looking credit card online recently and swiped right.
It seemed harmless enough, and besides, I told myself convincingly, a credit card’s not going to get the better of me.
What I didn’t realise was just how good they are at luring you in.
This one promised me free bottles of wine at swish restaurants I’d never heard of (but obviously should have). It played games while courting me, too, daring me to collect these magical things called points, which, it assured me, would help me fulfil my wildest dreams. And it was constantly texting, emailing and calling me, ‘just because’.
It’s nice to feel wanted.
Eventually I caved in to its demands. I filled out the forms, signed my life away and even added it on Facebook. And things were great between us, for a while at least. The card became my new best friend, opening my eyes to a whole new world of pointless purchases. I started to pay attention to designer brands and crave more and more useless stuff to fill my once-empty life.
“Sure, we had a few fights… But the make up spend was amazing”.
Sure, we had a few fights. There was that time it claimed half my monthly pay cheque before I’d even paid rent, for example. But the make-up spend was amazing, and back then we always managed to reconcile our differences.
Until one day we couldn’t.
On the way home from work, I went buy a new pair of jeans on the card as usual, only for the purchase to be rejected. On the declined receipt, I saw those fateful words: ‘insufficient funds’. Panicking, and with no other way of paying for the jeans, I started cheating on my old card with newer, sexier cards, cards that banks were only too happy to give me.
Soon I was waltzing around Sydney like the Wolf of George Street, strutting into shops like I owned them, constantly on the look out for new ways to use my stable of cards.
But underneath the glamour, I knew all I was doing was spiralling deeper into debt. Really, the cards were using me.
Image: ~lauren, Flickr