Thursday, May 22, 2008

What's next? Traffic tickets as Continuing Education?...

I had to have a good laugh today when I was online looking at my credit card transactions. Now, Discover feels the need to sort every transaction into a category: Services, Merchandise/Retail, Restaurants, Payments, etc. And they place these designations on your statements so you can see where you spend the most money…or possibly to remind you how many more ways there are to let money out than to pay it in. Usually these designations are fairly obvious. I know Gary’s, the new wine place on 23, is Merchandise/Retail. I paid a retail price (sorry mom!) and I for sure consumed the merchandise (which was delicious, I might add). I know Kohl’s is a Department Store. I was in the hosiery department looking for slippers (see previous post). I can even reason that Taco Bell is a restaurant…barely…but it’s feasible.

However, one designation struck me as so ridiculous. My gym membership. I would have expected it to be Exercise, or maybe even Services. I would have accepted it being listed as Membership or Masochism. But L.A. Fitness is not…I repeat NOT…Travel/Entertainment.

First of all, I use the elliptical machine. This is the opposite of travel. I exert energy and go nowhere. Anti-travel ≠ Travel. Weight training and Yoga are also not travel. The closest it comes is when I tell Scarlet, the yoga instructor where I think she can go under my breath during a particularly lengthy hold of Warrior Three.

Secondly, the gym is not entertaining. I don’t go there because it’s a hoot. I go there because I have a big fat keister and I do not want to look like Shamu in the pictures of all my friends’ weddings. (Yeah, yeah and because it’s a healthful thing to do.) That is self-image preservation. Maybe Discover Card should have a category for that.

(Side note: Reloading my MetroCard probably actually should be Travel/Entertainment instead of Services, but I’m more okay with that.)

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