The Payday Loan Shuffle!

Payday loans are the financial equivalent of a death trap! Before you know it, they’ve multiplied around town like jackrabbits! Multiple payday loans are a lot of work. By the time you get finished running around town paying them off and then borrowing again, you find yourself taking a lunch break between them because it takes up half your damn day! My buddies and I came up with a term for this phenomenon. We call it “The Shuffle.”

The term “Shuffle” came about from the fact that a person has to shuffle all over town every 2 weeks to payback and re-borrow the loans. The reality is that once you get your first payday loan you’ll most likely end up with 3 or more before too long. Payday loans are easy enough to get into but hard as hell to get out of.

The shuffle does not come without at least some self-perception of embarrassment or shame. Every time you leave your house to start the shuffle, you find yourself hoping you don’t run into any of your friends or co-workers as you enter or exit the shuffle location. It’s not uncommon to park your car around the corner and walk half a block to the shuffle as to not have your car seen parked right outside the shuffle. Either real or imagined, the shame of having been caught up in the shuffle is still there.

On some days you’ll see a person ahead of you in line at one location and then by the time you get to your next shuffle, you’ll see that same person as they are trying to wrap up their own damn shuffles. Sometimes you’ll acknowledge each other but most times you just go in and try to keep your head down.

Multiple shuffles will eventually turn into a financial nightmare and the only way you’ll be able to wake up from it is to “burn” them all at once by closing your bank account so they can’t collect their money via electronic funds transfer (EFT) when payday rolls around. Now you’re forced to open another checking account at a new bank before the shuffle place reports you to “Check Systems”.

Oh, and don’t forget about the cute girl that works in the shuffle location that you’d love to ask out if not for the fact that you’re in there shuffling every other damn week and it just wouldn’t feel right asking her on a date. But let’s play it out…

Me: Hello Kathy…I was wondering if I could take you out to lunch sometime?
Kathy: Well, I would but I’m always working and with me studying for my masters I really don’t have a lot of free time to hang out but thank you though.
Translation: Dude, you’re here borrowing money every other damn week. How in the hell can you afford to take me out?

You can see how this probably wouldn’t go over too well.

Part of the problem is that payday loans are everywhere you turn these days. Where I live there must be at least 15 of them within about a 2 mile stretch of road on either side of the street, so the temptation is there. Luckily for me, I’ve managed to break the cycle and get out the shuffle but it was not easy by any stretch of the imagination.

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