“Um, Uncle Barry, can we talk?”
“We just got the credit card bill in the mail today.” Nathan sat dejectedly on the footstool next to his uncle.
“Yeah, uh, what, uh, about it?”
“It seems as though we owe them a great deal of money.”
“I don’t understand your concern.”
“Well, we simply can’t afford to keep making these payments.”
“Why is that a problem? You know that making that payment is good for you, don’t you? It teaches you discipline.”
“I’m not so sure anymore, Uncle Barry. When we took you in, you said you’d help us around the house. We trusted you when you said you’d help us, but letting you handle the family’s budget isn’t working out the way we had hoped.”
“Nate, you know I love you and your family very much. I’d never do anything to harm you. I always have your best interests in mind.”
“We know, you’ve told us many times.” Nathan waved the bill in the air. “But this is getting out of hand. We just can’t keep spending money like this. We can’t even pay down the principle, this next payment is four times higher than our last one, and that’s just the interest.”
Uncle Barry turned down the TV volume and sat up in his recliner, finally looking away from the golf game. “I knew you might have some reservations about taking me in when your Aunt Zettie passed away two years ago. I was grateful for the opportunity and vowed that I’d make my time here as comfortable for you all as possible. Why, just look at your daughter’s face, how she smiles when she turns on her new phone.”
“Yeah, about that, Uncle Barry. She already had a phone that worked just fine.”
“And look at your son, Will. Don’t you think he thinks of me when he starts up his new Cadillac every morning to go to school?”
“His old car ran just fine. It got good mileage and we almost had it paid off. We were going to use that spare money to add to his college fund.” Nate responded.
“But now he’s the envy of all his little friends. It’s important that he be accepted by them.”
“But, Uncle Barry, Will has good friends who value him for himself, not what he has, or which car he drives.”
“Just think of the new friends he’ll have when they see him now.” Uncle Barry leaned forward in his recliner, “And what about how your wife looks at you when she puts on her new mink coat?” Uncle Barry gave Nathan a sly wink.
“Well, she likes it, but she hasn’t seen this bill yet. Thanks to you, I might be sleeping on the couch soon.”
”Don’t worry yourself, Nate. You can always come down here to the basement and sleep on my couch. That’s what family is for.” Barry said.
“But we’ve got a big problem, Uncle Barry. We simply can’t afford all this, this, stuff you bought.”
“Oh, don’t worry yourself, Nate. I have a plan that will take care of all this. You won’t have to worry any more about anything.”
“Um, what plan is that, Uncle Barry?” Nate said cautiously.
“I’m getting us another credit card!”