I just don't know when I have it good! Let me expand on that. A couple of years again I had a secure job working at a high profile cinema chain, and it paid well. I quit because I wanted a new challenge, and - yes - I wasn't entirely happy there anymore. But at the time, I was also moaning about money - saying that I deserved a lot more than I was being paid.
Well... right now I am on considerably less than I earned back then. My job has me stuck on minimum wage - which is, currently, £7.20 an hour. That means across a 40 week I earn £288, or £1152 (pre-tax) monthly. That's just under £15,000 per year! I don't mind saying that I left Vue on a salary of £23,500 (and then the chance of a £1000+ bonus). Incredibly that means that in the space of 24 months, I've dropped down £8,500 on the pay scale.
To put that into context, here are my compulsory monthly expenses:
Rent - £525
Travel - £154
Phone contract - £36
Food - £160
Energy bills - £25
That adds up to £900.
On average after-tax I've taken home £1113 monthly. This leaves just £213 left, once those compulsory expenses have been made.
But then you have other things that impact on that total - things I choose to buy, but consider 'essential':
Doctor Who Magazine - £4.19
Doctor Who Complete History - £13.98
Judge Dredd Mega Collection - £13.98
Netflix - £7.99
Now TV - £7.99
That adds up to £48.13.
Now all I have remaining is £164.87. That's before other expenses crop up (birthdays/travel to Manchester/clothes/medicine/etc). It leaves me no room to make savings.
My point here is I am not a wealthy man. There's now lots of things that I simply cannot afford to do (until I find a better paid job). It leaves me frustrated, and a bit panicky - as if I have to count every penny, incase I suddenly spend too much and face the prospect of entering the money abyss. It's no way to live.
Now, I've alluded to getting a better paid job - but it's not that simple. To be political for a moment, we now live in a horrible age where wages are crushed. Last November BBC News reported that these last 10 years have seen the slowest growth in real terms in post-war times. That's disgusting. Keeping people 'in their place' by paying them less - so that the gulf between employees and bosses grows and grows. It really pisses me off, knowing that I am being denied a better life existence by people who take and take - but don't give back.
(I am not talking about any particular employer of mine, here - but the entire system)
One of the reasons I'm writing so much of late is because I want to strike lucky, and get out of my current situation - because if I can't find a better paid job, I can create one by becoming successful, and creating my own terms.
Until then I guess I have to live in the system, and live by the means I have. Doesn't mean, though, that I have to be happy about it - or attempt to break free.