Sunday, September 14, 2008

Butterfly Hates Credit Cards

There are several truly evil things in the world, like Hitler, vampires, parsley, and step-mothers. And of the last couple of months, credit card sales people.

Now we all know that vortex of debts credit cards can lure, tease and ditch us in, with promises of gastronomical delights and stunning supercars as prizes. We all know that credit cards are detrimental to our savings accounts and are mutually exclusive to each other, like Louis Vuitton and discounts. And we all know that credit cards look best in black.

For the longest of time I’ve kept my loyalty to American Express, despite the comparative lack of perks and high annual fee. It wasn’t so much that I was a staunch believer of cash, but it was a concoction of laziness and lacking opportunity that kept my wallet shy of a visa.

For the longest of time, I’ve always wanted the DBS black card, but at the same time, I’ve always only had people from Maybank and Standard Chartered calling me about their ‘new’ platinum cards. This went on for like forever and every time I would assert my disinterest for it and remind them not to call me again.

Obviously, they, like all other sales people who are deaf and never understand ‘no’, kept calling me up every month. Sure, they changed the tele-marketers but it was always someone with a funky accent and equally deaf. Till one day,

Tele-sales: “Hi seer, I am cawlling from Starnd-dard chart-tard bunk, and we wood like to ark-stand our plut-ti-niam card to yew.”
Me: “It’s okay, I don’t want it.”
Tele-sales: “Bart why seer? It is free for..”
Me: “I know, I know. I just don’t want it. But hey can you get DBS to call me? I want to apply for a Black card.”

She hung up shortly after and they have since stopped calling me. I made the deaf hear again. I am one amazing human being, more awesome than David Blaine.

I finally did get down to applying my DBS cards and it went from my primary objective to get one card to getting an entire collection of cards that I will never get to use. So much so that I will soon have so many cards in my wallet that if I put all the magnetic strips together, I will qualify as the new North Pole.

Sales: “So what credit cards are you looking at?”
Me: “What do I qualify for.”
Sales: “That will be all of them. I will recommend you take, this..this..this and this.”
Me: “Do I need that many?”

He went on to tell me specific perks for each of them and all I heard was, “discounts off drinks and one-for-one” and I was sold like a slave to a colonial tea plantation willing to work without lunch.

These guys are pure evil beings with eyes that pierce your very soul and scour your weaknesses. He had me by the nuts. How could I - knowing it to be a cardinal sin - turn down anything that gets me twice the amount of drinks with the same amount of money?

This guy was so good, he could convince Michael Jackson go back to being black again. And the next thing I know, I’m taking on cards I have never heard of before. I knew then that if I stayed to chat with him more over coffee, he might have convinced me to buy a camel and trade in my car.

That said, I was never against the idea of having multiple credit cards. When I was working part time as a tele-marketer for Ready Credit 9 years ago with Huixx, I never understood why anyone would turn down something that was free.

We were offering free usage of a credit facility and throwing in a Gianfranco Ferre pen prized at $129, when in reality it cost $15, and some G-shock replicas from China that lasted just long enough for an erection. Like, how can you possibly say no to these?

Just keep it for a year and cancel it when the waiver period is up.”

That became my best selling formula.

Then just last night over dinner I was telling the guys about how amazingly fast CitiBank processed their credit card application and the reason why I signed up for two of their cards, which supposedly gave some pretty good perks.

Faith: “It’s all the same one. Trust me.”
Me: “Huh, are you sure?”
Faith: “What dividend card, what clear card.. all the same. You just need to carry one card out.”
Me: “Fuck…”

Me: “But there are some cards which can help you earn flyer miles right??”
Germ: “Yep, I checked on those, but apparently it isn’t even good, cos you sacrifice one component..”
Me: “What?!”

Fuck me backwards. I am now a victim of credit card dependency. I better fucking win a supercar next year, or I will be VERY pissed.

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