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Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Vacation on Lay-a-way

Photo Credit Spokesman.com
I ran across an article on Yahoo Finance about Sears offering vacations, from cruises to Hawaii that can be paid on lay-a-way! Lay-a-way was a huge part of my childhood and young adult hood in New York City. It was how my mom got us Christmas gifts. She would go and pick out a few toys for each of us in October with a small down payment then pay it off little by little and bring them home right before Christmas, well most years.

On the years she was unable to get the gifts out prior to Christmas we would get them for Three Kings day, is that just a Puerto Rican thing?

Anywho, when I had my first child I was young and living paycheck to paycheck and her father had passed away so I had to do it all alone. In September I would "make a lay-a-way" as we said back in the day, lol. I would pick out winter clothes, socks and a coat and pay it off every payday until I could bring it home. Same thing I did in the Spring for the summer. It helped me and a lot of other people clothe their children during time when Plato's Closet didn't exist and the only offerings to be had at the Salvation Army and Good Will were polyester suits from the 70's. Oh, the horror!

When stores started to eliminate lay-a-way in favor of store credit cards I was pissed.

Instead of paying it off slowly and owning it once you were done, now if you qualified and got a store card you were at their mercy in terms of the max amount you could spend. And don't even get me started on the ridiculous interest you had to pay.

Yes, you got to take the stuff home before you paid for it. But as we all know that was the beginning of a lot of peoples shopping addiction and snowballing credit card debt.

Enough ranting, here is part of the article and a link to the full story on Yahoo.