A week or so ago I retrieved the mail from the box and found an envelope from Ameren. Not entirely unusual, as the company has been doing work in our area recently to bury power lines (yay!). But this wasn't about the power lines. It was about power. Raw power. Obsessive, unmitigated use of power.
This was a friendly communication from Ameren saying, "Hey, look! We tracked your power usage! Dude...you've got some serious issues going on there in the winter months."
For years (YEARS) M has told me, and everyone, "Oh yeah, the Christmas display uses about as much power as the A/C in the summer." That's typically pretty impressive on its own. People's eyes go wide and they say, "Wow!" Wow is an understatement, my friends. Wow isn't big enough.
Because Ameren showed me the real
story. I came into the house and confronted M. "Soooo, buddy boy, how much power does the display use?" He looked wary, "Why?" This is typically not a question that is posed to him in March. I thrust the evidence with all its graphic glory in front of his eyes without saying a word. He looked it over. "Whoa."
That's when the line of BS came out, which is hilarious because M is so
not a BSer. Me? I'm a total BSer. Havta be to do marketing. But this isn't about me. It's about M. M and his total BS line of, "It's from the heat we use in the winter. I told
you we've been bumping the thermostat up too high." This was followed by a little chuckle, which reeked of, "Is she buying this?"
He was banking on my forgetting/not knowing that the A/C is electric and the heat is natural gas. He was wrong.
I told him this was bloggable. He tried to negotiate. It's non-negotiable. I'm putting it out here for all the world to see. His addiction to power must be shown. It's the first step towards recovery.
And did you see the taunt that Ameren printed right there at the top of the page? "Remember...reducing your usage will reduce your monthly bill!
" All chipper-like. As if that's an option in this house where the lone male human spends hours tweaking a spreadsheet to see just how much more
power he can add with each successive year.
I also find it ironic that they printed the graph with Christmas colors. It's like they're egging him on. Well, of course they are. We throw the switch every year (or rather, our designated Grand Lighting Marshalls throw the switch) and Ameren calls a company-wide meeting to announce that holiday bonuses will distributed once again, sometime in February. After we pay our January bill.Special note: I'm withholding my new employer's name not out of any confidentiality issues or whatever. I'm perfectly happy to tell you the company that has hired me. I'm just not gonna do it here yet, where my new colleagues can google the company name, find my blog, and learn just what a crazy person I am before I even start. They'll find that out soon enough. I mean, really. My January energy bill is twice what it is in the hottest months of the year. In St. Louis. Who does that?