How to destroy your credit card

December 26, 2009 at 11:45 pm Leave a comment

So…Christmas is over for another year. Did you have a great time with family and friends? Did you get what you wanted from Santa? I bet one thing you might have wanted from Santa is a debt-free 2010. As we head towards New Year’s Eve, we start to think of those dreaded New Year’s Resolutions. Some people don’t bother with them because they know any resolution will be long forgotten by the end of January. Others, like me, well…we make a list and stick to it until about March or so. But this year, we can all stick to one resolution – saying goodbye, adieu, hasta la vista to your credit card. Why? Because it’s probably keeping you in debt and if you used it to finance Christmas, you’re about to face the January credit card scare.

There are two Golden Rules to being Frugalicious. The first is never spend more than you earn and the second is don’t have credit card debt. If you pay off your credit card in full every month, then stop reading this post. Otherwise, read on.

First of all, gather up your credit cards. I know this will be hard but I’ll wait. Get them out of your wallet and place them on a table. As this will be ceremonial-like, why not light some candles for atmosphere. Perhaps pop on a CD of your favourite music. Make the farewelling of your credit card an important occasion.

Now, you could do the usual thing and take a sharp pair of scissors to your credit card but let’s get more creative. Here are some ways to destroy your credit card but make sure you’re always careful: wear protective goggles, gloves, clothing and shoes.

Nuke it. Place the credit card in a microwave safe bowl and pop it into the microwave. This is a pretty satisfying method albeit a bit smelly. You might expect it to explode but it will just melt and buckle. Watch this video to see what happens.

Run over it. Wait for a sunny day to go out and mow the grass. Take the credit card from the table, carry it out on a ceremonial tray and place in the centre of your lawn. Start your lawn mower. Say a few words in memory of your credit card, then head in the direction of that shiny piece of plastic sitting innocently on the grass. As you reach it, say “consider this a divorce” and run straight over it, listening to the lawnmower blades making a mess of your credit card. See if you can find some of the pieces and dance around the remains.

Shred it or blend it. Find a shredder that shreds plastic. This is a noisy method but strangely soothing. The shredder will rip apart your credit card into tiny plastic bits in seconds. Or you can pop your credit card into a blender. The more credit cards you have, the better the blender method. Watch this video for instructions.

Blowtorch it. Only use this method if you know how use a blowtorch safely. Place the credit card in a metal vice, say a few prays for the credit card, then light the torch and watch as it melts away before your very eyes. Watch this video on how to blowtorch your plastic (along with other whacky methods).

Washing machine or dryer.  Set your credit card to the test – how many times can it make it through the washing machine or dryer cycles?

Hole punch it. Put as many holes through your credit card as you can and use the bits as confetti. As you’re punching your credit card, remember how many times your bank has punched it to you with rising credit card interest rates.

Credit card funeral. I really like this idea. Robert Crilley (retired North Carolina district court judge) presided over a funeral with a difference. Inside a miniature casket were the torn-up credit cards of 50 or so people. Gather some frugalicious friends who also want to say hasta la vista to their credit card and do the same, complete with music and a North Carolina accent. I really encourage you to watch this video of Crilley. I love it when he says:

“The deceased represents the merging of two very powerful bloodlines: the one whose motto is, ‘You know you deserve it,’ and the other, whose motto is, ‘You can have it now…..Our friend didn’t want worship. He just wanted everything that he gave you back again in one form or another — with 18% interest.”

Go camping with your credit card. Next weekend, go camping with your family. Have some quality family time by lighting a camp fire and tossing your credit card in the camp fire. Joining hands, dance around the camp fire together as the plastic burns. You might find yourself getting into a state of ecstasy.

Here are 27 more fun ways to destroy your credit card but, whatever you do, make sure you securely destroy your plastic. You need to know how to properly slice and dice it so identity theft can’t occur. Watch this video on how to securely destroy your card in 15 slices, this includes running a very strong magnet along the stripe on the back of the card (to scramble the data).

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