Wednesday, September 14, 2011

My Version of the National Poverty Level

According to the newspaper, my husband and I are a mere 2 kids away from falling below the National Poverty Level, or NPL as I like to call it.  NPL makes it sound more like a sport, like NBA or NFL or NRA.

Since I'm mathematically dyslexic and because I don't give a rat's patootie about details (it was in the newspaper but the explaining paragraph looked too boring to read so I skipped it), I'm really not sure how they come up with the figures that define if one falls above or below the poverty level. So I've devised a more clever and brilliantly thought out way to find out where you stand.

I believe my version to be more accurate.

(This is my family in the 1940's making apple butter in their backyard. I might be poor but I get it honest.)

You fall under the NPL if:
1. The toilet paper where you work is better than what you've got at home.
     a. You work in a feed mill part of the time.
     b. The other part of the time you work on a roving tar & chip crew, therefore the toilet paper consists of napkins from Sheetz and whatever flora you can scrounge off the forest floor.

2. Your welfare/foodstamps friends with multiple kids are eating better than you. The inside of their fridge looks like the midnight buffet on a Carnival cruise ship compared to your pitiful collection of condiments and Ziplock containers of mysterious and fuzzy mold.

3. You hang out at the old folks home in the winter time because they have heat.

4. You buy a cheap pair of flip flops for $7 at Payless and the cashier tells you that you must have mega will power because there is a Buy One Get One Half Off deal going on. And you're like "No, I just don't have an extra $3.50 and I feel bad about spending this much instead of buying the $1 ones at Dollar General."

5. You realize that the jeans you are wearing were given to you buy your friend Mary before she moved away and that was about six years ago. You got your "dressy" t-shirts from another very good friend (who will remain nameless so her boyfriend doesn't wig out on me) when she had her boobs done. And as you look around, you discover that your entire wardrobe was given to you by someone else.

6. You read about the NPL in the newspaper you found on the breakroom table at the mill because you can't afford to buy your own subscription.

7. You dream about robbing a bank but in your dream, someone finds your stash of stolen loot and shreds it into mulch. Even in your dreams you get to be poor. Bummer.

8. When you accidentally get burnt by a run-away firework on the 4th of July you refuse medical treatment because the co-pay to see your doctor is $30. You don't need that arm anyhow, that's why God gives you two of them. Let it burn.

(This has healed nicely on its own since the picture was taken and yes, that really is my arm and I really didn't go to the doctor.) 

9. Your front bike tire went flat two months ago and your husband still hasn't fixed it.  - Oh wait. That falls under "Cheap and Simple Repairs Your Husband Could Do But Just Conveniently Forgets To Do." 

Welcome to the NPL. Go Team Poverty!