Ask Auntyji: Bold Babies and Treacherous Tradies

Our resident agony aunt answers your dilemmas!

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Quoted vs Actual vs Invoiced

Dear Auntyji

Now that summer is practically here, we thought it would be a good idea to tidy up the house and get some small renovations done. We have a lovely home and I want to keep it looking wonderful all the time.  So we needed to get some light fittings installed and we called up some tradies for quotes. Now, most of their quotes were around the same, however, two of them gave us quotes for a cash job. This incensed my husband, who is upset that these folks are not paying taxes. One of the tradies seems like a nice fellow and appears to be very much aligned to attention to detail. This is the guy I want working on my house – but my husband keeps carrying on about not engaging tax cheats and that he has issues with such folks. Can you please provide me with some guidance here, Auntyji? I just want the job done.

Auntyji.Indian Link

Auntyji says

Oh dear, how easy it is to be high and mighty and gaze upon the world with such a stalwart single-minded view of the idea of one’s self-righteousness.  I wonder what the view is like from that pedestal he has placed himself on. The solution is really quite simple. If your straight and narrow patidev has issues with the tradie giving him a quote for a cash job, then ask the tradie to provide a quote for an invoiced job. There, simple. The tradie will add another $500 to the job, and your husband can sleep easily at night knowing that there is a tax invoice traceable back to the job and the tradie is doing the right thing by Australians everywhere. This really is a simple solution. But do let me know what hubby’s position is after he sights the quote for an invoiced job. I am sure his principles aren’t as deep as he thinks his pockets are.  

Baby brain

Dear Auntyji 

Recently we caught up with former neighbours of ours who had moved away to be closer to their parents – as after the birth of their baby, they needed help. Auntyji, previously, Ashley and Kal were the most interesting people. They could debate for hours about global geo politics, about global warming, gender pay parity, euthanasia, animal rights etc, you name it. They were the font of all knowledge, and regularly kept us informed and entertained with riveting information. But, when we met them on the weekend, and this is 2 years after Larissa was born, they had become the embodiment of spectacularly dull people. All they spoke about was Larissa. They did not have anything interesting to say and when I tried to venture into the subject of Trumponomics, they looked at me with a vacant stare that chilled me to the bone. It’s as though Larissa was a demon child who had sucked out all life from her parents. And don’t even get me started on Larissa. God, what an obnoxious child – always wanting attention. I had to fake a smile and spout insincere and hypocritical observations such as, oh you dance so well, when Ashley insisted that Larissa bust a move, or oh you’re sho-shmart when Kal encouraged Larissa to sing a rhyme. 

I am so disappointed about this that I have vowed to my husband that when we have kids, and I become like this, to euthanase me post haste. How do I ensure this does not happen to me?

Auntyji.Indian Link

Auntyji says

Well, Ashley and Kal are those dull, boring people who are probably so fascinated by the fact that they have created a little human, and are so caught up with what they have done, that all they can do and say is, look, we did that, and point at little Larissa. They are the adult equivalent of a toddler who builds a sandcastle and who thinks he has conquered the universe. Hopefully, much like a bully who kicks the sandcastle down, Kal and Ashley will soon learn that they are as dull as lassi with no salt. So it’s simple. Write yourself a note of all the things you never want to say and be like when your kids come along, and put that list somewhere where you can see it every single day. And until the kids arrive, make sure you stay reading and educating yourself on world affairs – because kids are terrible little sponges who take up all of your time and leave you with little. This means that you can kiss reading The Guardian or Washington Post or The Atlantic goodbye for a couple of years when kids arrive. So be grateful that Kal and Ashley gave you a vision of your future. You don’t want to become them. But only you can stop this eventual decline. Happy reading! 

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The original Australian sub-continental agony aunt. Email: info@indianlink.com.au