Money orders

A postal money order

A postal money order

Allow me to introduce you all to the postal money order. For $1.50, you can get the equivalent of a cashier’s check from the post office. It can only be cashed by whoever you make it out to, and it’s basically accepted as cash by every corporation. You can also just give someone a blank one, although that’s riskier to carry around for the obvious reasons.

I was tired of checks bouncing. I can’t be bothered to make sure my account remains such-and-such, which means it happens sometimes, especially times like now when I’m poor. So I asked my landlord if I could pay by money order–he’d never heard of them before, but seemed okay with it when I explained (he’s a really good guy!).

I went down to the bank and got out $2750, and headed to the post office. I asked for 9 money orders, each for $303. The postal worker really only made a couple funny faces about me being weird, although my friend said she was pretty loud about my walking out with that much cash-equivalent, it went pretty well. And I immediately endorsed all the money orders so now they can lie around the hose safely.

Also, they come with attachable receipts (shown in the picture) in case you lose the check and¬†need a replacement, so that’s nice.

Making my finances public

I decided to post all of my purchases/income. This isn’t something I was totally comfortable with, but I couldn’t think of good reasons not to, and my default position is to release information. I think this is especially interesting since it’s not something I’ve seen made available before. Link: http://za3k.com/money.html

I think the analysis may be useful to other hackers, as people tend to be insane and cost-insensitive around money. I think having another persons’s finances to look at for comparison is something I’ve wanted for various reasons at various times, and it’s not commonly available. My selfish motivations are to get other people to tell me how I should be saving lots of money, and to feel like my financial decisions are under scrutiny (which is good and bad).