“The ban on ‘no gifts’ is one that Miss Manners hates to have to enforce,” Martin has written. “The idea behind it is so much nicer than the ‘Here’s what you have to buy me’ idea behind proliferating gift registries. But it is impolite because it shows you have been thinking about getting presents, even if you are willing to forgo them.”
Celebrated Self-Help Author Dies
Stephen R. Covey, author of “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People,” died this week after suffering complications from a bicycle accident.
Often you can point to a book that changed your thinking. Covey was the author of such a book for so many people. Last year, Time magazine named “The Seven Habits” one of “The 25 Most Influential Business Management Books.” It certainly has a permanent place on my bookshelf.
“Stephen Covey’s leadership training book is widely recognized as one of the best-selling business books of all time,” wrote Stephen Gandel of Time. “That’s funny, because there is very little in it about business or management. Instead, the book is a tour de force on confidence building packaged into seven easily digestible maxims.”
In a tribute to Covey, Tom Peters, a best-selling business author and friend, said this: “Stephen expected the best of all of us — and he provided us with straightforward tools and advice to help us get from here to a better there.”
Covey certainly did that for me.
College Costs Shifted to Students
Undergraduate college students have been contributing more of their own money toward their education, according to a recent survey by Sallie Mae.
The nation’s largest private student lender found that undergraduates covered 30 percent of the cost of college during the most recent academic year — the largest share in four years. They spent an average of $2,555 from their income and savings and took out $3,719 in loans, reported The Washington Post’s Ylan Q. Mui.
As Mui wrote, the tough economy has forced many families to cut costs. The study found that for the first time more than half of college students lived at home. In addition, more students opted to live with a roommate or work longer hours to pay for school.
According to Sallie Mae, families spent an average of $20,902 on college for the past academic year, down 5 percent from the previous year.
Responses to “It’s a Hot Mess”
NBC’s “Today” show aired a segment last week that found that every single repair person they called to check on an air conditioning system wasn’t honest about what needed to be fixed and then overcharged for services.
So, for last week’s Color of Money Question, I wanted to hear your repair horror story.
Here are a few of the things people have had to endure:
“I had trouble with my DirecTV, and the young repair man sent out was woefully inadequate,” said Ruth Jacobi of Arizona. “When I heard a lot of noise coming from the laundry, where the DirecTV service box was, I found him pulling coaxial cable down from the attic to ‘find’ the end. He was sitting on my dryer, with the service box 24 inches away from his left arm, and had never thought to first open the service box. Happily, I had caught him before he had damaged the coaxial cable or its connections, and sent him on his way.”