Fun With Student Loans

Sallie Mae decided to dick around with us this week by sending a past-due notice on my student loans when they hadn’t sent us a bill at all since before I started my graduate work in 2003. Aside from the fact that I was ready to rip someone’s head off over the sheer audacity of this development, we couldn’t have paid the damn bill had we wanted to because there were about a dozen different numbers on the damn statement, each one seeming like it was the amount we were supposed to pay. There was a “monthly payment” amount, a “past due” amount, and a “total amount due.” The total amount due and the past due amount were far lower than the monthly payment, which didn’t make any sense to me, and the Sallie Mae phone number presented in the footer of the statement, which promised 24/7 service, was closed at 8 PM. And, conveniently enough, I don’t get home until after eight.

This was what I came home to on Wednesday night and the yelling match which commenced upon this news was perhaps the grandest and most melodramatic Stephanie and I have had in months. It wasn’t just the student loans; it was our entire financial situation which sparked this spirited debate, which wasn’t really a debate at all. You would think by now that Stephanie would realize that weekday evenings are not the time to approach me with discussions involving any more complicated than what we’re having for dinner, but she hasn’t learned. And you would think by now that I would have realized that my wife can’t handle the burden of making all the financial decisions for our family without my input, but I haven’t learned either.

We’re slow learners. I guess that’s the point I’m trying to make.

So, that bitch Sallie Mae pretty much ruined my Wednesday evening. I really do wish that Sallie Mae had never come into my life, and if I ever write a story where it would be appropriate to name a villainess Sallie Mae, I think I will do so.