Words that mean you are about to pay more

As I have spent this week reflecting on the last 6 years my mind drifted to many episodes where we ended up paying for things for our sons during their college careers that we never anticipated.  I will share a little of that this morning I will also talk about a few words that have always been “warning signs” for me when it comes to cost.  This is a small attempt at humor and I hope it is taken as such.  If you are offended, sorry about that.

The first word that automatically means increased cost is the word Organic.      There are few words I have seen in my life that have so quickly been “slurped up” by the masses as meaning something of value, sometimes rightly so and other times not so much.  I was buying yogurt in the grocery yesterday, and I eat a lot of yogurt.  There were two choices in the dairy case, side by side.  One was a low fat yogurt and the other was an Organic yogurt.  Both were store brands, but the Organic yogurt was twice as much as the low fat yogurt, and yes, they were the same carton sizes.  Guess which one I bought?

The next word that has dubious meaning is the word Designer.     While there are some guidelines for what Organic can mean, what are the guidelines for the word Designer?  Designer jeans, designer furniture, even designer pet food.  Give me a break.  When I see the word Designer, I run quickly in the other direction.

A third word I cringe when reading is App, short for application.  As we all know, “there’s an app for that” is one of the most overused phrases I have choked on in recent years.  The proliferation of hand-held devices has caused the App market to grow by major proportions, it has also caused Apps to be created for the most mundane purposes.  Enough about that (I am sure there is an App for that…)  

I’ll divert my attention now to some of those unforeseen expenses that seem to come up when your kids are in college.  The first shocker was fraternity dues.  I am a member of the Sigma Chi fraternity and also happen to be a life member (not a big check for this, but a check nonetheless).  When one of my sons chose to be part of a fraternity at his alma mater I had a minor heart attack when I saw the cost versus what I paid in my days.  I do realize that his meals and related expenses were included, but wow, times had changed.

We were also fortunate that our sons got to do the “Spring break” thing all four years, both of them.  I remember my days at good ole’ Murray State and I never took a spring break trip.  No wonder I have been such a failure all of these years.

Don’t get me wrong.  I am jubilant that we have been able to send two sons to college at outstanding schools and have both graduate in four years.  That is amazing in today’s world.

If you are a parent and have a child heading to college in the near future, add about 25 or 30 percent to the costs you think you will see.

Some of the issues will revolve around the word Organic, Designer or App, but more often than not, the costs will deal with trips to the beach, formals and related issues.

We are headed to another college graduation this weekend and I am so looking forward to this.  Not so much because it is the end of something, but because the journey has been such a good one in so many ways.

My older son referred to me as a “sentimental old man” at some time in the past and I know there will be some misty eyes when I sit at this ceremony on Sunday afternoon.

It has been a wonderful journey, and I so look forward to see what is next on the list.

Have a great weekend!

War Eagle!