Monday, February 27, 2012

Day One: Ground Zero

So there you are, box in trunk, headed home at 9am. Barely an hour or so after you arrived at the office.

It happened. You've been laid off.
Now what?

Well, first you will go through many emotions. Expect it, roll with them, laugh, get angry, cry if you must, laugh. Laugh hard. And then laugh even harder when you realize.... sea, surf, sun and sand are at your disposal. Elastic waistbands are at your disposal. The People's Court - live, not on Tivo - is at your disposal.  The ppl you felt jealous of because they have incoming paychecks yesterday, are now the ppl you secretly pity. Its true.

So my friends, YOU are now the ones all your former co-workers secretly envy. YOU are now in that position you all secretly group-lusted after. The few (or many if you live in CA), the proud, the Unemployed!!

But before you plan your next surfing lesson or mountain hike, reason has to take hold. You need to cut your costs. First, MOBILIZE. Like, right now.

1. Immediately get online and file your unemployment claim. Do not pass Go, do not collect $200.
Link (if you live in CA) below- scroll to the very bottom of the page, tick the box and hit "continue".
It takes 8 minutes. You'll need to know how much your vacation paycheck/cash out is, your regular paycheck amount, amount of any severance pay and the last day you ...worked. hee hee.

If you're in CA, as an EDD (ca unemployment)  requirement, you must register for jobs here:

I filed on a Friday and received my weekly benefits form that next Saturday. Do this BEFORE you make your 100 phone calls to family and friends and tell them how happy, I mean upset you are that you've been let go.

1. CANCEL YOUR INTERNET & turn your phone into your own portable hotspot. The droid has a free app that will do this in a coupe clicks and the iphone does as well. Google it my friends. Googling is imp because fabulous hackers will tell you how to do this under your carriers radar as now if they "catch" you - some carrier will just charge you without notice. (check your bill every month to know when/if you have to dodge and weave - look for another method)

The other option, the one I am lucky enough to take advantage of, is - piggy-back on one of your unsuspecting neighbors' wifi. Its not the Lamborghini speed I had previously but public transportation ain't all that bad when its FREE. Note: if this is your case, you WILL be reminding urself often its free its free its free because slowing down on the internet is so NOT intuitive!!!

2.  DOWNGRADE YOUR CELL and opt for a Go Phone, Cricket or pre-paid phone service. Check w/ your carrier of choice. Might you have to carry around a less-than-cool cell phone? YES*.  Deal with it kids because you'll seriously get more and pay less. These phone have unlimited talk and text for about $30-40.


note: I have steadfastly refused to "upgrade" from the ergonomic iphone 3 to the rough and brick-like design of the iphone 4- HOWEVER, AT&T traded my 3 for the new 4 w/ Siri for a mere $40.  DO NOT try out Siri. She will literally mesmerize you into spending this extra $40 that you have NO business spending. (she is a vampire and no one can convince me otherwise). Listen to her and then you must have her. It's evil.

another note: Do the math on 1 & 2  if your going to hotspot your new cell you'll need to get a data plan. Still, on the Go Phone at least, this will still run you as low as $40 a month.

**** You CAN actually carry your cool  iPhone with you if you move to StaightTalk (and probably other services as well). Here's how.

Free apps. Cool hacks. Nuff said.
SAVINGS = $0   I just do this on principle.

This is not bad for a day's work. You've now cut your monthly costs by $120.
Sittin pretty....sittin pretty.

OK, tomorrow chirren a bank lesson I learned today totally by accident.

1. Find out when your cable TV contract ends and how much the fee is to break the contract.

Research your TV options:
A. Amazon Firestick
B. AppleTV
E. WD (Western Digital) Live TV Hub and like products (google is your friend). BOO! They no longer make this to my knowledge!

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