Give Me Some Credit!

And here we are in Albany, New York. 

I left Southern California Saturday morning with three suitcases and a carry-on bag with five things capable of taking pictures and three blank journals. Did I look like I like to document life? You bet.

We landed in Vegas at 11:11a.m. Made a wish. So did Randy, guy in the exit row who was celebrating his birthday. I know this because the overhead lights were turned off, every passenger closed their windows, and then we all hit our call button and reading light “birthday candles” and sang to him.

It was pretty great.

I stepped off the plane and sat at the first slot-machine I saw. Wheel of Fortune theme. I put a $5 bill in, got up to $27.50, walked with a $20 bill.

But then I had another two and a half hours.

So I lost a $5 bill.

But awhile later I was bored and I still had another hour.

So I put in another $5. And… got up to $40.25!

And a few minutes later, I left Vegas +$30.25. Not a bad layover.

Two days later, I’m sitting here hoping to get the keys to the car I’ve put a deposit on at the dealership. But everything is a process…

The car salesman is great. Said I look and sound like Helen Hunt, and I have a good handshake, too. Maybe he’ll be my first new New York friend.

But the process.

He asked for my driver’s license. Being a “New Yorker” for just over 36 hours at this time, I produce a CA license from my wallet. That’s not 6-points of identification in NY, so he asks what else I’ve got.

Well, old habits don’t die quick. I pull out my passport.

“Seriously, who carries their passport in their purse?”

I know, right?

Credit app time. Employed? Uh… I will be in a week. Annual monthly income? Uh… in a week… Home address – aunt’s house. Nearest closest relative – um… my aunt? Can I just list my dad in California?

I look at my new friend. “I’m not doing too well here, am I.”

But then my second NY friend, the finance man, and I meet. 

Here is the mission: 

Put down most of the payment for the car. About 70%.

But then, take out a car loan for the remainder so 22-year-old me with no credit history can build some credit.

Great.

Except when the finance man says, “Sooo… your credit score came back really low.”

HUH?

Like, laughably, joke low. He said “You only have one thing on your credit history – an overdue payment from (name) cable company?”

No, I personally closed that account over the phone. My roommate lived there two months after me, but I did it all by phone. The only thing she had to do was return the –

And the word “modem” hangs in the air.

NO.

So with the promise he’d call the banks to find out loan options to solve this little fiasco of “I need credit to get the bank loan, and now I need the bank loan to boost my credit”… I get on the phone with the cable company.

So maybe this was a little my fault. Maybe I could have followed up.

But a minor frustration. I paid my bills online for two years. I got an e-mail a week from them with regard to statements, promotions, updates. If I had a question, it was dealt with by phone or e-mail.

“Yes, we sent you a letter. It got returned to us.” 

Right. Because I hadn’t thought to get a forwarding address from my college apartment, because the only mail I received were the paper copies of the cable bills.

So I asked, after two years of predominantly online activity, with my e-mail address and phone number on file… there was no attempt to reach me that way? When the account has been closed – doesn’t that suggest maybe I moved? At all? Said with exasperation because my credit score is in the tank because of a $24 modem.

Best line from the company I bought internet from for two years:

“Yes, our company does not send many e-mails.”

1) Yes, you do. Annoyingly often- Just not for subjects of vital importance, apparently.

2) REALLY?

Argh. Come on.

End of rant.

Thank goodness they don’t happen often.

Maybe twice a year.

Life is just fine.

If with a super-sized interest rate and potentially apartment-less without a co-signer.

Sigh.

Credit score schmedit score.

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