gas, grass, or ass – i’m riding for free!

so the december bills are already starting to trickle in…

…and some are higher because i short paid last month to help finance the trip.

but others are much, much lower. like a negative balance on the gas bill, which is kind of funny. i was surprised when the bill got emailed and had a number in parentheses, which means it’s a negative. “how did i go backwards on my gas meter?”, i wondered.

well, it turns out i didn’t.

no, my deposit finally got applied to my account, which is odd because i made my seventy-five dollar deposit on my gas account back in may…of 1996. i was told the deposit is put in place in case you try to just walk on your bill, and is applied to your account “after a bit”, but the lady who i gave my deposit to (who died over a decade ago) wasn’t sure how long it would take.

good thing i didn’t press her on it.

in the spring of 1996 i was going through an odd experience – i kept getting utilities cut off, but i had tens of thousands of dollars in bank. so why did this happen? because i wasn’t used to paying bills…i had always lived at home, and even in college when i stayed with my mom she paid all the household shit. in the wake of her passing most of what came in her name i was told to write “addressee deceased” and send it back. so i did. but i hadn’t flipped things into my name on the house yet, so some shit got ignored that shouldn’t have, which in this case resulted in me having to take a cold shower one morning (gas hot water heater, like i still have to this day) and then going down to the gas company. i told them mom had died, and they kinda freaked out the account was still in her name, ’cause i could basically run up a balance, walk on it, and they couldn’t do shit.

the old lady behind the glass pay window said, “how about this – the bill is $125, but you only have to pay $50 because i’ll apply your mom’s $75 deposit…but then i’ll need that $75 from you for a deposit on the account i open in your name at this same address…deal?” i said “sure” and there we were, but asked how long they held the money. the response i got was “oh, it gets knocked off your balance after a bit…you’ll see it on your bill”. and i did. nineteen and half FUCKING YEARS later.

who knew? hey, at least it EVENTUALLY came off, right?

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