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So I go online to pay my “middle of the month” bills – utilities, internet, phone, etc.  I had a very pleasant surprise earlier in the month when the gas company (love my natural gas) DROPPED my EPP (Equal Payment Plan – same amount every month) by $80.  Sweet – $960 instant and unexpected savings.  Flush with enthusiasm and windfall, I hit the local government site to pay my water, sewer and power – something I’ve been doing online since the first month the City added online billing.  Love it.  Until…. a new $2.50 “convenience fee”.
What effing convenience?  The fact that the City conveniently doesn’t need to hire people to stand around and wait for other people to wander in and pay a bill?  That credit cards are instant payment – no “will the check clear” worries.  That people can pay over the weekend, no receipts need printing (good for the planet too), more accurate – nothing but good news in this move.  But wait – since when do I have to *pay extra* for an already cost-cutting measure?  Don’t get me wrong, I expect to be picked apart like a pile of (taxable) guts in the desert, but good grief… a deuce and a half is just petty even for a cash starved government cow.  Not gonna do it – gonna walk down the few blocks to Public Works and pay in person.  I just have to decide if I want to use a check that will take days to clear or loose change…
Speaking of cows… the polar caps on Mars are receding.  Melting.  Getting smaller.  Warming even.  (This is nothing new but still one of the reasons we love NASA.)
Wonder if that’s the cows or the cars causing that Martian Warming…