csberry: (pumaman)
A group of professionals decide to start a business. There are three partners, three skilled assistants, and three low-skilled staff members. Being a group of progressives, the partners decide that all pay will be based on position in those three categories with no individual pay negotiations or bonuses. For the sake of easy math, let's say the partners get $20/hr, assistants get $10/hr, and staff gets $5/hour. No sexism there, right?

Well, two of the three partners are male. The same is true with the assistants. For the staff, all three are female. Well, since all positions are paid the same no matter the sex of the employee, that's equal pay, right?

However, if you take all the men and their pay and compare it to the women, the math goes like this:

Two male partners and two male assistants equals $60/hr going to men. One female partner, one female assistant, and the three staff only get $45/hr. Then, let's break it down a bit more and the 4 men earning $60/hr averages at the men in the company earning $15/hour. And that $45/hr divided by the five women equals $9/hr. But I thought the men were being paid the same amount as the women?

Sadly, the statistic about women in America making about 77-80 cents for each dollar men make is based on this last kind of math - adding up all the pay, adding up all the males/females, and making a sex-based average (the low end is when you put the entire population into the math and the higher end is when the numbers are broken down into general industries - software, manufacturing, law). But when studies put forth the effort to get statistics on men and women in the same jobs (not merely the same industry or career field) with the same level of education and experience, the gender pay gap is actually closer to women earning 88-96 cents for the male dollar.

At this time, men dominate the CEO and other C-level positions in America while women are the majority of the "low-skill" or entry-level workforce. That is why I made my example business set up with men dominating the top of the pay bracket and women filling the lower range.

So, while things aren't as bad as the 77 cent situation, obviously there is still more room for improvement when looking at the apples-to-apples comparisons. Essentially, much of the discrimination is on the jobs men and women go into (can get a job in) and not quite so much how much the employer pays the males vs. females. My hope is that we are in the midst of change. Women now outnumber men in colleges. It is only a matter of time for more of these college-educated women to stay in their careers and ascend the corporate ladder. As they ascend, the sexists shaving benefits and being more firm in negotiations with women will decrease. Also, more women are choosing child-free lives and more "high-risk" jobs (such as frontline soldiers getting combat pay, truck drivers, and oil riggers) that pay much more are opening up for women.

These factors should lead to Equal Pay Day moving earlier in the year.

Some resources:
http://www.econlib.org/library/Enc1/ComparableWorth.html

http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2012/jun/21/barack-obama/barack-obama-ad-says-women-are-paid-77-cents-dolla/

http://www.slate.com/articles/double_x/doublex/2010/09/are_young_women_earning_more_than_their_boyfriends.html

http://www.payscale.com/gender-lifetime-earnings-gap
csberry: (Default)
It would be nice to save the nearly $90/month we are currently paying for satellite. Here is a list of the shows our family DVRs. I'm now going to try to figure out where else we can catch these shows. If I can match up enough of these, I'll be convinced to drop Dish Network. I've put the shows that I couldn't find full episodes in bold.

Read more... )
csberry: (DonnaOMG)
There has been a leak with the master bath toilet. Last week, it was leaking a little less than a 1/4 cup of water between the tank and seat when you flushed the toilet. This weekend, I disassembled and reassembled the toilet and tank to ensure everything looked good and was snug.

Yesterday, JD tells me there was water around the base of the toilet. I came home and wasn't able to find any wet spots other than the floor around the edge of the toilet. I didn't see any water dripping from the toilet. The only thing I saw was a single drop that clung to one of the two bolts that connect the tank to the seat.

Just a little while ago, after a flush, I saw a drop fall from that same bolt. I felt all around the bolt to see if the water was leaking out elsewhere and merely flowing down to drip from that bolt. The toilet surface felt dry everyplace I put my hand. I grabbed some pliers and found the wingnut to have some slack, so I tightened it up. I gave it just a little bit of a twist more than necessary, because I heard a tiny snapping sound (like a toothpick being broken) and suddenly a line of water drops emerged on the surface of the tank. The line went from the bolt to the outside edge and part of the way up the side of the tank.

(insert a whole variety of curse words here)

What may have been fixed by replacing the gasket that was on that bolt is now going to require so much more than that. While it may be possible to seal the crack, chances are that I'm going to have to bite the bullet and replace the whole toilet if I can't get a replacement tank for my toilet. Stamped into the side of the toilet is the production date of June 1982. I just don't know if my 1982 Gerber toilet can easily have its tank replaced by my choices at Home Depot, Lowe's, or where ever.

I am far from happy right now about the required repair and the potential cost.
csberry: (cocktails)
JD went about 50 minutes over her plan last month. I found out this morning that when I changed to a plan w/ fewer minutes (to save money), we lost the free mobile-to-mobile calls. I've just been lucky since that change that this is the first time JD went over the 200 minutes (lots of months with 170-190 minutes). It costs too much to leave Sprint right now ($130) since JD upgraded to a new phone in Feb2010 with a two-year contract.

I've looked over JD's phone usage and am stuck with a lousy decision. Upgrading from the 200 minute plan to the 450 minute plan (for an additional $10/month) to avoid another overage in minutes would actually result in tons of unused minutes due to having free mobile-to-mobile again. I just don't see the point in paying for 450 minutes when JD is likely not to top 200 minutes again because of the re-acquiring free mobile-to-mobile.

One way or another, they're going to get more money from me...just a matter of deciding how much I'm willing to fork over.
csberry: (Default)
My LiveJournal paid account will be expiring in a couple of days. I've looked over my journal and the only aspect of the paid account I use is that I have about 35 userpics. Otherwise, I don't use any of the other Paid features that exceed what Plus folks get. With that in mind, it just felt silly for me to let the account automatically renew for $20.

My apologies to those that may see ads on my pages once I've gone off of the Paid account.

A/C Fun

Jun. 25th, 2010 04:09 pm
csberry: (dead parrot)
Last evening around 5pm, I noticed the temps in the house were sneaking up. After looking around and not finding doors open or other obvious reasons for the rise in warmth, I decided to jump into action and examine the A/C. I called up All Seasons around 5:45pm and a guy was at our house around 8:45pm. We soon discovered that the capacitor for the outdoor unit/compressor was bulging and dead.

During my discussion with this repairman, it became obvious that our unit is probably going to die in the next year or two. He said the industry advice was to start evaluating the repair vs. replace costs after 10 years. He then told me that A/Cs in Huntsville tend to last 12 years. The repairman inspected both units and let me know there was an oily film at the bottom of the...can't remember now...that he said was typically an indication that the bearings were leaking and likely to cause a problem at some point in the near future. After a quick look at the info I had on the A/C unit, I found out it is just over 12 years old. Add to this information: 1) the tax credits for installing new energy efficient appliances (including central A/C) will expire at the end of the year and 2) TVA/Huntsville Utilities has a rebate for installing a new A/C unit that will also expire at the end of the year. The rationale for getting a new A/C unit by the end of the year becomes very compelling now.

I started reading up on pointers for A/C shopping this morning (great article in Popular Mechanics and yet another time I got annoyed with Consumer Reports for not having a thing available on equipment most people would LOVE to have info on). Then when I came out of Home Depot today, there was a guy with Trane info and an offer to come out for a free estimate. So, I'm getting this ball rolling now in hopes of actually doing the swap during this fall.

One thing I will certainly be debating with this is whether or not to do anything about the air ducts and circulation in the house. When the house was built, the original outside unit was on the south side of the house and the interior unit in the attic above the south end of the hallway that goes from the living room to the bedrooms/bathroom (where there is an intake in the ceiling). Well, when they put this new unit in, they put the outdoor unit on the north side of the house and the indoor unit in the attic on the north end of the house above the kitchen and right at the top of the attic ladder that is in the garage.

BUT they kept the intake where it was on the south end of the house. So, there is one huge duct that runs from the intake vent to the indoor unit on the opposite end of the house and then another large duct tube that comes out the north end of the indoor unit, does a U-turn and travels parallel to the intake duct down the middle of the house. What makes all of this even more odd is that the ducts running the treated air are all twisted and curvy around the indoor unit. There is a definite temperature difference between the rooms on the south end of the house (the bedrooms) and the kitchen area. There is a very noticeable difference in the force/speed that the air comes out of the vents in the bedrooms compared to the vents in the kitchen. So...will I be buying new indoor/outdoor units AND having guys set out new ducts? I've never been through this experience before and am very concerned and curious.

Ah, the joys of home-ownership!!!
csberry: (May not get to death)
Some time over the past day or two, I misplaced half of my keys and half of my wallet. For my keys, I keep the car and home keys on one ring that attaches to a keyring that has all my other keys. I usually don't use the larger ring except when I need to drive JD's car. At one point this weekend, I did have to drive her car. Now I can't find those keys...which also includes the keys for my parents' and in-law's houses and other misc locks.

On occasion, I will remove the ID portion of my wallet and just use it. This is usually done when I don't want the whole lump of a wallet in my back pocket and don't intend to use cash. Saturday night, I tucked the $20 my grandmother gave me for my birthday into the ID fold. I am vaguely confident that I had the ID section with me when I went to work the Cotton Row Run yesterday morning because I somewhat recall peeking at the $20. Upon returning home, I emptied my pockets as quickly as possible at my desk since I was rushing to the bathroom. I recall finding one item in my pockets while getting out of my uniform a few minutes later and kinda recall removing it, but don't know what I removed and where I put it. Although I took a wallet with me to the in-law's yesterday afternoon, I honestly can't say for certain if I took the ID portion or the rest of the wallet with me.

So, thanks to my slipping memory and no luck searching (with help from JD), I have been stuck at home and will probably not be able to vote in the primary today.

I'm grateful that I only lost the ID portion of my wallet (containing: $20, drivers license, debit/ATM card, American Express, gas card, auto insurance card, and health insurance cards). But I'm far from thrilled with the stress of searching for the wallet and the hassle I will endure to get a replacement drivers license.
csberry: (Default)
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I would have to turn the $100 in to the library's Lost & Found. If the money was found at a table, circulation desk, or someplace where someone would have been sitting/standing and accidentally left it, I'm definitely going to do the L&F route. However, if I found <$20 on the floor, outside the library, tucked in a book, or someplace where ANYONE could have lost it, I'd probably keep it.
csberry: (angrybum)
I've been paying more bills over the internet the past year or so. Each month there are certain payments that annoy me...not because of how much they cost but because of the confirmation number provided after I make the payment. More businesses need to find out what American Express does so all my confirmation numbers are as simple as "W4528." Now...compare that with the cluster-fuck number provided by GE Credit (payin' off kid dentist) - "5642336803211-786566." Yeah, a nearly 20 digit number won't cause any problems if I ever had to call up customer support with a payment issue.

Yard Sale

Apr. 25th, 2009 03:44 pm
csberry: (bigmclargehuge)
The yard sale at my parents' house went very well today. The items left over from the yard sale last week were transported this past week. I added about 7 new items this morning. Pretty early in the morning the home theater system sold for $180. Lots of little things sold. But the best moment was as we were starting to put stuff away, a n'bor went straight to the exercise bike we've been trying to sell since last fall. She talked about how she enjoyed the recumbent bikes at her gym and how it would work well for her parents (who live next door) to use, too. She paid the $200 with no hesitation or haggling.

I put everything I thought we could sell at KidsMarket or at the yard sale I have at my house this fall (about a dozen items) into the car. The rest of the items were going to be picked up by one of the local missions that was driving a truck through the neighborhood. So, I made money and unloaded a lot of stuff that we don't want and several groups of yard sale shoppers also passed on purchasing.

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Cory Berry

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