one of our on-going sagas here in the UK is to attempt to get credit. due to the credit-based culture in the US, back there we could have purchased several fairly expensive cars on the amount of credit Lady Visa and Master Card were willing to give us (shout out to Renaissance Faire geeks there). Here, we have been turned down flat for credit cards by our bank and mortgage lender, Lloyds, and generously offered a card with a £260 limit by the dolts over at Barclays (they are dolts not because of this, this just adds to their ridiculousness).
So I'm in M&S (Marks and Spencer, like KFC has decided that initials are the way to go for the whole re-branding/updating. and it's working marvelously) in city centre purchasing sheets for Mike's recent visit. I'm asked if I have an M&S card, I prepare the automatic, pavlovian response of: no, no thanks, no really no and then stifle it: why not apply? they don't keep track of the applications here in the UK (in the US they do) and so it doesn't matter if I get rejected. I apply, and lo! after many weeks in the empty ocean of credit-less-ness, we have arrived at the shores of mastercard, a full £2000 limit to our names! yea, praise be to the goddesses of credit. may the beeping of cash registers and the tapping of numberpads forever hail thy glory.
the card arrives: they market it as 'the little black number' it's matte black. with chartreuse edges. it is, in a word, awesome. we are now real people.
I heart capitalism.