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Money-Saving Monday: On-Call

On good days, I harbor a mild dislike for my job. I make sarcastic remarks about the idiocy of it all to power me through my day. On bad days though, no amount of sarcasm will do. On days when I spend four hours on a conference call for something I am powerless to fix (but I’m expected to anyway). On days when the work follows me home. When I am talking to my senior manager at 9:30pm for no.good.reason. When I have to tell The Husband for the third time in as many days to make no social plans, and I do mean none. Well, most of the time when that happens, I am on-call.

One week. Of hell. Of knowing where you phone is every second of everyday. That means while you sleep. While you eat. When you are in the shower. All of it. Where is the damn phone?


Once upon a time I wrote a love note to my Corporate Overlords. I should go back and re-read that more often than I do. Like right now. In that spirit, let me recount how being on-call is a very nice substitute for a no-spend week. How’s that for thinking positive?

Not only am I tied to my damn phone, I’m tied to my laptop and an internet connection. The stipulations aren’t clearly outlined. Rather, it’s generally understood that you will roam no further than about 15 minutes for the interwebs. Ever. There are hotspots and my friend’s have internet, sure. Getting stuck on a conference call in a Starbucks, or not being able to leave your friends office for hours on end, uncomfortable, un-fun. Making on-call very similar to house arrest. It’s the weekend that wasn’t. At least when it comes to leaving or socializing or shopping or visiting.

That’s not necessarily a bad thing. On occasion. As much as it pains me to admit.

I read about a couple hipster garage sales this weekend. Garage sales I would love to go to. Where I would most assuredly spend money. Can’t. Stuck at home. No money spent.

My favorite coffee place is conveniently enroute to one of those garage sales. I could easily drop $10 on coffee before I even considered anyone’s used junk. No garage sales. No coffee. Compounded savings.

I skipped my usual wine or beer beverage purchase on Friday Night. Because answering the phone sauced could be worse than not answering the phone at all. $10 to $12 purchase, skipped.

Chicken supplies are in order. Treats, fly trap re-fills, just a couple things really. A couple things delayed. There will be no outing to the Chicken Store.

I’m not even going grocery shopping. It’s not that the stores are so far away. Its the thought of abandoning a cart full of food because duty calls. A potential big fat waste of time. I sent The Husband with a grocery list, from which he does not deviate (it’s his way). Our weekly grocery spending, lower than the prior two weeks. Not a surprise.

Instead of all this money spending, I…

Bonded with my new Chickens over the inferior treats they already have. Chickens don’t care.

Braided my (hopefully) cured onions for storage.

Pruned my tomatoes (again) in the hopes of their actual ripening.

Worked on and brainstormed about my fake budget. More on that later in the week.

Made blackberry jam with blackberries I picked near the accursed place of employ.

Line dried clothes and bedding on my fancy new outdoor line.

Finally uploaded promised pictures from my friends wedding.

As always, blogged and managed to get a little structural DorD work done. Check out the updates to the About page.

And, yes I worked. Friday night, Saturday, and Sunday. Yay, Me! There’s that sarcasm again. I spent more time than I would have liked on my work laptop, keeping my browsing habits in check as not to spoil the frugality of the weekend. Because the frugality silver lining is about all I’ve got.

Does your job save you money? In a good way or a bad way? Do the responsibilities of work interfere with your life?

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The only thing I get is a discount on my cell phone. It must be pretty decent since the guy at AT&T told me I get a better discount than he does.
Yeah work interferes with my life but it is a necessary evil to have the life that I want.


Necessary evil is the name of the game. At least for now. Until such a time as we can vanquish the evil, lets focus on those cell phone discounts. 😉


I gotta say – it doesn’t matter if you love your job or are working for the corporate hive: on-call sucks. Period. End o’ story. I don’t know one person who says ‘Oh yay! On call!’ It’s disruptive to house and home no matter what your situation. Sure, some on-call is less disruptive than others, but I ask you, would you rather one intense week in say 8, or every other week of having to know where your phone is – even if it is rarely called. Just sayin’, there’s always a silver lining there somewhere. Yours is apparently giving you a reason to get sh!t done at home. So embrace it (and you’re definitely still allowed to grumble when that phone rings at 2 AM. I do, and it’s not even my phone ringing!)


I agree. Anybody’s on-call, not matter the line of work, no matter if its yours or your bedfellows, it stinks. Mightily. So sayeth The Husband, who’s a pretty heavy sleeper.

It is nice to have an excuse to shut off the world and stay home. I just can’t embrace that being at the direction of my Corporate Overlords. But, that’s my own issue.


Honestly – I’m more worried about the change in culture where it is not only “okay” but expected that you work more than 40 hours a week for your job. Especially if it is the for the Corporate Overlord which eventually turns into that 1% of wealth. Not to make this an argument for or against the Occupy Wall Street movement, but there’s some of that frustration inherent in any rant against the Corporate Overlord, yes?

There was a recent article in the paper about how that was turning into the norm and it made me so made I wanted to spit nails. I think part of the struggle that we all have in balancing home and life is that the expectation is shifting away from having a home life balance. Gah.

P.S. Article here:


Oh man, are you preaching to the choir. Which I know that you know. But yes, when did it become unreasonable for me to expect to have a home life? For me to *gasp* make plans on the weekend? Or (the horror) want a full nights sleep? Somehow we are shifting. And its beyond work ethic. Its servitude.

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