One of the interesting aspects to being made redundant is how you view things you previously considered essential before the axe fell.
In our humble abode Mrs P and I sat at the dining room table and put a line through some of the obvious contenders for being kicked off the bus as we forget what just happened and move forward.
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Consequently, left standing on the roadside looking bewildered as we drive off into an uncertain future will be - among other things - my daily BP Wild Bean coffee, daycare for George the Dog, $20 a week I put aside for my annual golf trip, Mrs P's Briscoe's visitation rights (I mean you can only have so many kitchen bowls right?), some insurance we've had for years which we can't actually remember why we got in the first place and the cost of having a second car.
Actually we're going to be selling the second car.
It's a 2007 Rav4 with 60k on the clock. I've realised I need to be quite realistic on the price particularly as I'm 57 now and may find it difficult to get a job before I get the pension in eight years.
So I need $331,748 to get me through until then if you're interested.
We're also knocking hair cuts on the head. Or rather I am. It's a bit of a sore point to be honest.
Let me explain.
My hair cut takes my long-time barber 10 minutes if I'm lucky. It costs me $20, depending if I get a wax and shine too. I go maybe once every two months. From now on Mrs P is going to be doing it at home in the bathroom and I'll be sweeping up after because she won't let me use the vacuum cleaner. Apparently my hair is like No.8 wire and clogs it up.
Mrs P, on the other hand, goes to her salon every six weeks. She gets the basic service. It costs $150. I'm reliably informed that's pretty reasonable.
Now at this point I don't mind admitting I'm sitting at the dining room table wondering why on earth I've been a lowly-paid journalist for 40 years and not a hairdresser!
But I like to think I'm nothing if not appreciative of the support I'm getting from my beloved so I rule out Mrs P's offer to cut back on her visits. I figure when she looks and feels good I feel good too, albeit with a depleted bank balance.
Right, so we've got through to the end of our list.
We've been able to save a bit here and there so we'll be alright for a bit longer until I can find some work.
Later I'm in the garage sorting through some stuff to sell online to bring in a bit of cash. I have to admit the cost of Mrs P's haircuts is weighing on my mind.
It comes more into focus as I discover a box full of unused Briscoe's kitchenware.
An idea comes to mind.
If Mrs P is going to give me a haircut every two months maybe I could do the same for her. I'm sure it would be easy.
I know we've got some scissors somewhere in that third drawer down from the top and now I've just found a box full of kitchen bowls I can cut round as a guide we'll be all set.
Footnote: Thanks for all the messages of support for this column. In fairness I must point out it is NOT this newspaper making me redundant. This column lives on thanks to the editors who use it and the support of its readers. Sadly, the commercial realities of our current economic situation have led to many of us fulltime journalists employed by the parent company (NZME) losing their jobs. My apologies for any confusion. Keep smiling.
• Kevin Page is a teller of tall tales with a firm belief too much serious news gives you frown lines. Feel free to share stories to firstname.lastname@example.org .