Thursday, July 27, 2006

The Loan Saga, Part 1

Our story begins in January of 2006. Spring semester started and like the majority of students Mr.3 needed a loan to attend school and to pay for other expenses (in our case, rent for the rest of the semester). Like the semester before he applied for a $15,000 loan from TERI, and like the semester before it was granted, and like the semester before the University of Utah's financial aid department messed up the dispursement. Loan checks for students who live off campus and are granted by a lender outside of the federal government are not subject to maximum limits. However, the stupid fuck who messed the dispursement up last semester managed to repeat the same exact mistake to the same exact person that he had gotten "written up" about.

Two weeks before our wedding we were notified that there was a problem with the loan check and that it would take a couple weeks to reprocess. The result of this news was me yelling out the window at the top of my lungs "Fuck!" in the cold January smog-ridden air. Our wedding depended on that money....or rather, the wedding depended on my tax refund and now that tax refund had to cover rent and bills as well as a wedding.

The week of the wedding we were told that they were still in the process of cutting the new check and it wouldn't be back for another week. Result: honeymoon was out (luckily my boss managed to pull an extra comp day out of a resort vendor we work with), the reception went from catered to a self-catered reception sponsored by Costco, the wedding dinner went from Aristo's to the Spagetti Factory. My paycheck went to paying extra wedding costs associated with entertaining visiting family instead of the bills.

We cut our wedding plans down to a third of what we intended---Mr.3 and I should get medals.

The week arrives of the loan check coming, but Mr.3 can't pick up the check unless he fills out paperwork that only someone-or-other has ...and the check is locked in someone's office....and that person is sick...blah blah blah. This situation of him trying to pick up his check goes on for over a week. Then we are notified that someone in the office was apparently doing their job and as the check hadn't been picked up...they followed protocol and sent it back to the lender.

Mr.3 complains, rightly so...and the complaints go through the financial aid administration, to the University's counsol's office, even to the President of the University's office. They apologized, said that they would get the check re-issued, and tried to get Mr.3 to sign a form stating that he wouldn't sue. He refused to sign until he had the check.

We contact the loan company about a week later and they notify us that the check has been sent to the University. We tried to contact the office of financial aid and everyone that we have been in contact with...only to be met by silence.

In the meantime, my meager paycheck is only making utlities and food....and a whole lot of creditors are calling wanting to be paid. After almost a month of not being able to reach anyone at the University who would say anything about the check, Mr.3 calls in a favor to a colleague of his (they work on a university think-tank on terrorism together) that works for the US Attorney's office. I hear of an additional loan that I can apply for and get it. The $4000 disappeared almost overnight in covering the two months of rent and credit card bills that we are behind on.

We hear good news at the US Attorney's Office, the University now has given the check over to them...then.......... our contact is transferred out of the country and our case and our check falls in-between the cracks for close to another month, with 2 weeks of that month being deliberated between the Utah US Attorney's Office and the Denver Regional Attorney's Office as to who would take responsibilty for the delay in getting the check to us. No one in Utah would take responsiblity as all of the lawyers in a position to couldn't because they had a teaching affliation with the University of Utah.

When we finally get the check, we learn the following:
1. The university did not want to accept that they had screwed up in the first place and since Mr.3 was unwilling to sign a form stating that he would not sue, the University tried to invalidate the check from being reissued, tried to erase Mr.3 as a student, and had an active policy that they were not going to give him the check....just like it was possible for a poor-student to forget about a $15,000 loan check...yeah, that's it...he won't remember....idiots!
2. The US Attorney's office was going to look further into the University's action to determine any criminal actions had taken place.

In any event, we finally had our loan check--which with fees taken out of it from the lender--was about $12,000.

On May 26, four months since this horror had all began, we deposited the loan check thinking that our problems had finally come to an end.


I admit it, I have laughed at lawyer jokes but have never really felt that way about them....until today. Called a lawyer today, told him the whole saga...his advice? "Wow, you really are in need of a lawyer."

No shit, that's why I called him.

Then he proceeds to tell me that no decent lawyer would touch us without at least a couple thousand up front (he also said that any lawyer who would handle this case pro bono would not be worth it). His fee is $165 an hour and he actually told me to contact family members for money or just go back to the phone book and call more people.

Oh...and he thinks that we are guilty and that Zions Bank can do no wrong.

Now, I knew that trying to find a lawyer willing to go up against "the church's bank" was going to be tough but I didn't expect to have contact with someone who was such a dick on my first time out.

So if anyone knows a good lawyer willing to do pro bono work and prove this guy wrong, please contact me.

In the meantime, we are trying to work through the legal department of TERI (the institution that granted the loan check to begin with) to get this resolved. Depending on how helpful they are will depend on whether or not I go to the media on this. In any case, I am filing an official complaint with the Department of Justice against "CH" for violating my "victim's rights". Not that I expect it will help us any, but at least I will have the satisfaction of this guy getting in trouble at his work for how he is treating us.

in 3 days....

I turn 27, and it is shaping up to be the most horrible birthday of my life. My bank accounts have been frozen, the US Attorney's office has stopped talking to us, and I have had to leave my husband in another state because we were told that Zions Bank has filed charges against him and that they (Salt Lake City) are "aggressively pursuing the charges". I am at the point that I am so raw that I don't know who I can trust anymore or where to get help....we are even doubting as to whether or not we have actually been dealing with the US Attorney's Office and not some Zions Bank employee in disguise.

On Monday we drove back to Denver (this trip being financed by $300 borrowed from my now dead Uncle), we were to have an appointment at 3 or 3:30 to give statements. We were told that we would be able to be reimbursed for our trip this time and for the trip last time...."just make sure that you have your receipts and they will cut you a check before you leave."

So we are there, we call at 2 to make sure we have the right directions. Our contact "CH" says that the interviews are taking longer than expected (there are supposedly 8 to 10 other people there with similar complaints). Suggests that we just check into our hotel room and that they will come and pick us up...that is, if they can get us in today. They would call before 4pm if they would be able to see us. So we wait. Actually I collasped from exhaustion as I had been driving since 5am. No call by 4. So we call him....and the number we had been using to call "CH" has been switched over to a fax number. "CH" calls us from his cell phone...tells us that there might be a problem with Mr.3 coming down into their office because of the problems with the SLC complaint...but that they definitely want me to come in and give a statement. "CH" says that he will be by the hotel by 10am the next day to pick us up and to be prepared to be in meetings all day long.

10am the next morning...Mr.3 and I are dressed and ready to go. "CH" calls and says that he was almost at the hotel but that his office called him and said to come back immediately; he would call us later to see what exactly was going on. Repeated attempts to get ahold of him denied. Noonish, "CH" contacts us back, says that "officially" he can't talk to us, but they still want to arrange for me to come in but they can't decide what they would be obligated to do about Mr.3. "CH" asks us if we have considered getting a lawyer; then says that he will contact us back later about making a statement...but still suggests that Mr.3 "stay on vacation".

Exit to lunch at a mall. I force myself to eat although I am so angry that it is taking all of my strength to not throw tables and snap children's necks around me. Mr.3 trys to take my hand but I won't, I tell him that I will break his fingers if I do. He looks concerned as I start to cry...then suggests that perhaps we go outside. He wants me to drive back to the hotel but I can't....I can't focus....I start to pace back and forth behind the car. He tries to calm me down and then...I....snap. I throw my cup across the parking lot and scream "How do you expect me to feel? I am completely dependent on you...for information---I can't talk to this guy at the US Attorney's office, I can't talk to this guy at TERI....I can't do anything! I can only answer collection calls but I can't tell them anything....ANYTHING!!! All I can do is to take the threats! And I have to listen to you tell me that this US Attorney's office STILL can't see us! We wasted everything to come down here, not once but twice...we have NOTHING.....NOTHING!!! I'm financially ruined and I can do nothing about it! RUINED!!! RUINED!!!!" And then I began to scream, and scream, and scream...there in a parking lot screaming with no purpose, only to expose what the true emotion that I felt.

When I stopped, Mr.3 snorted. And I ran to car and yelled "if you are only going to laugh at me, then I am leaving." He was quick, he almost didn't make it back into the car before I drove off. I didn't think that I would actually make the drive back to the hotel but I did. And I made it back up the stairs to our room and through the door...and to the bed where I sobbed uncontrollably for what felt like hours. The pillowcase was stained black where I cried. I thought that I had brought waterproof mascara...or else they hadn't product tested it to the extreme conditions that I put it under. I know that I slept after a while....and it felt like I had been asleep the whole day...but it was only an hour or so.

Afterwards, Mr.3 was going stir crazy and was going to go down to the lobby. I told him that I would be down after I finished going through the receipts we had...which was a fraction of what we should have...but the number is steadily climbing towards $1000 for expenses throughout both trips..not counting the tow truck cost and the car repair. When I got down to the lobby, Mr.3 was ready to go...he wanted to get a drink. I stalled...this wasn't the right time to be drinking anyway. And I asked him an almost unforgiveable question "am I being lied to?"; a question that hurt him more than he thought possible. We ended up walking a couple of blocks to a burger king...I got a water, Mr.3 an iced tea. The heat and my emotions were making me sway. Then we walked back towards the hotel and had a nice meal at a Mexican resturant and agreed that we would try again tomorrow before we left town.

The next morning we were both trying to get in touch with "CH"--as I now had the phone numbers--to no avail. We drove downtown, found a parking lot, and basically laid in wait to hear some news. Mr.3 received a text message, stating that things we bad and couldn't "officially" talk to us right now, he would give us more information later." We called our new bank, Wells Fargo, to see if Mr.3's direct deposits have come in and then we were told that there was a hold on our account and that we had to call another number to fix it. We were told one thing and found out that what they told us was wrong. So I had to call them, being the Wells Fargo Deposit Operations Service Center, again to try and fix the problem. What has happened is that Zions Bank has sent out a message to all of the other financial institutions stating that we owe them money. This message resulted in our Wells Fargo account being frozen and our ATM cards deactivated. Granted we only have $31.05 in our account, but Mr.3 now alone in Colorado, could have really used an extra $20 so that he could eat. The only way to get the hold removed is if Zions Bank sends in a letter saying that we have paid them back. Of course telling them that I am currently in a dispute with the bank and that there has been a complaint filed against them for wire fraud did nothing. Any direct deposits into the bank will be delayed and if we actually want to get money out of our account we have to go into the bank branch and beg a manager to let us have our just like with Zions Bank, you can put all the money you want into your account, but that doesn't mean that the bank will ever let you use it.

I drove home by myself yesterday..crying, yelling, and screaming the whole way. Got to my parents, cried myself (rather clichely) to sleep while clutching the pillows Mr.3 would have been using. I operate in a state of cold rationality and overly emotion demoralization.

Now, today, we are trying to figure out what to do next. The number we had to contact "CH" both his cell # and office # are not being answered. I did a search on the office number and found out that it was the fax # of the Audit Office of the Denver Regional Office of the US Attorney...however when I called the number they didn't know who "CH" was and gave me the number to the criminal division across the hall. They hadn't heard of him either. So now we are trying to figure out who exactly we ARE dealing with...before we go anywhere else.

I am writing this to prove to myself at least that I am not crazy. And I am going to start writing this story from the beginning....something has to give, hopefully it won't be me.

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Mormon Cartoon

When are you ever going to hear the phrase "endless celestrial sex" in a cartoon? Why right here of course!

Checking in....

I seemed to have spent way too much of my time yesterday "pimpin' out" my Myspace account to appease my little brother. I find the whole site oddly complicated but that might be that it is a combination of way too many things that I am used to using infinitely better software for... oh well. And the fact that I can't comment back to my friends on my own account....just strange.

As for the personal, Mr. 3 and I head back to Denver tomorrow to handle more legal stuff. Let's just say that banks cannot be trusted....we were actually told that they (the bank) were not entitled to give us our money...and we have been bouncing from one customer service rep to another only to have them cancel our bank account and accuse us of the moral of the story is....don't trust wire transfers and don't trust Zions Bank and anyone associated with them. Ok, so I know that this paragraph is odd and out-of-the-blue...but I haven't really mentioned anything even though this entire problem started in January....and I am really worried about how things are going to go at the US Attorney's Office tomorrow. When this is all over...soon I hope....I will write ALL of the details down for you to see. Wish me luck!

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Have you ever been to Silt Colorado?

I have, in fact our car broke down there on our way back from Denver. The car had been making some wonderful progress on the drive back, dear Koosie seemed to be doing well, then about a mile or two before we came across Silt the air conditioner stopped working and the check battery light went on. We made it off I-70 and parked at the Gofer Food Conoco station.....well it was that or the Kum n' Go station across the street, and I couldn't honestly keep a straight face while in there anyway.

One of the attendents gave me the number to her personal mechanic who said that he would be there in about a half hour. So Mr.3 and I purchased Lunchables and those goofy toys out of those 25 cents vending machines. I watched a piece of pink gum that someone has spit onto the ground melt in the 105 degree heat and turn bright orange. After an hour we called him again, to which he announced that he wasn't going to show up....thanks bud. The next hour was spent trying to stop me from crying and find someone to help us in this little town. Of course if the mechanic guy had told me when I first talked to him that he couldn't help I might have been able to contact one of the other mechanics in town.....but by the time we found out, they were all closed. So we had to arrange for someone to come down from Rifle and then tow our car (to the tune of $280) to Grand Junction; where we left our car and the remains of the frayed and broken alternator generator fan belt thingy that broke on our car.

Luckily my parents were only 2 and a half hours away and were able to come and get us. Tomorrow the real fun begins because we have to figure out how much the repair will be, how we will figure out payment for the repair, and then of course, collecting the car. It really marred the whole Denver trip to say the least. I can't go into details about the outcome of the Denver meeting, but it is positive and hopefully I will be able to tell about it soon. We'll see.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

one more thing....

Rob's blog, Title of Record (check the sidebar because I am too lazy to make a link) is blocked by the BYU internet filters as it says it is pornography.

Oh that is sooo funny. Who knew that linguistics could be so dirty?

Rambllings and Updates

Ever notice that you always hear the Moody Blues "Tuesday Afternoon" on Wednesday?

So I went to the BYU bookstore today and bought two books that Mr.3 and I have been looking and sniggering at for a while. As we have to leave to drive to Denver tonight, I thought that we needed some reading material to make us laugh. The first book is called "Strangling your husband is not an option" it is all about how to make yourself be a good and patient Mormon housewife. For example "When you were looking for a husband you always looked your best, the same should continue after marriage". At first I didn't think anything of the sentence until I stopped an considered the phrase "when you were looking for a husband"....yeah, the book is about how to master a relationship based upon superficiality...and of course, this responsibility falls upon the woman. Along the same vein of who is responsible for keeping the marriage happy is the other book that we bought, entitled "And they were not ashamed"---strengthening marriage through sexual fulfillment. I expect that it will give us more tips on how to do it "missionary style".
But perhaps the most fun about purchasing these books was because I took these two books up to the counter by myself in addition to another copy of the Book of Mormon (I don't have the Pearl of Great Price and I have been reading about the mormon papryi) looked liked I was having some real problems at home...the look on the girls face and her comment of "have a good week" was priceless. I knew that I should have picked up a priesthood guide for Mr.3...that would have made it THAT much better.

I saw someone pray before they ate their lunch in the cafeteria today. It was weird.

Sorry for the strange post. I am alone on the BYU campus today as Mr.3 is at home in order to greet the plumber to help with the foul smelling drains. Unfortuately, they didn't find anything...what a drag.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Home Pungent Home

Well I have alluded to the fact that something horrible lives within our drains....smelling what I would consider to be close to the anus of Satan himself while having a bit of an "upset tummy". So today, Mr.3 and I return from the weekend at my parents and a day of Arabic at a house that smelled much much much worse than it did before.....quite like a sewer actually and we fear that a sewer pipe in our house has ruptured somewhere beneath the stove in the kitchen (as that is where the smell is the foulest). As normal the house is a mess and dirty dishes are everywhere, and I cleaned as much as a could in order to determine that the cause of the smell was not the dishes. So tomorrow, we wait for the plumber and hope that our house will not permanently smell like this.

In other news.....I got the blood tests back from the glucose is now out of pre-diabetic levels and well into the normal range. Which is excellent as this is showing that I will likely be able to prevent the diabetes which the doctors said would be inevitable without intervention and I have severely cut my chances for gestational diabetes later I just have to continue losing weight to make sure that I can keep this all down without medication.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Revisiting Cancer...

I had planned on writing something frivilous about whatever is living in our sink (no matter how many chemicals we run down it, it still smells foul) or something about the fourth of July holiday, or about how my doctor's visit went really well yesterday....but sometimes you read something that you just must talk-about.

Through other bloggers I found out about a blog called Lightning Strikes Twice, it tells the story of a man who was dianogised with Cancer 12 years ago, only to have his wife dianogised as well. I recommend that you read it from the beginning...and be warned, it is sad. He chronicles life taking care of her and watching her slowly die...and now, how he is handling mourning. In fact, he has an alternate blog-site composed of love letters to his late wife.

Besides directing you to a truly moving of course makes me think of my Uncle's recent death....which oddly enough I had to look up again in my blog because I couldn't remember what month it was. It seems like forever ago and then just yesterday. Most days I don't think about it or him (to be honest). I like to think that I am done mourning him, I said my goodbyes and I shut the door, literally. Reading Lightning Strikes Twice just reminds me that in my Uncle choosing to die in the way that he did--and face it, he did make all the decisions in this matter---that I was spared from a long-ordeal of caring for a terminally ill family member. On the other hand, it reminds me of the anger and resentment that I am other members of my family felt in not being allowed by my Uncle to care for him, because we would have and we wanted too. Maybe it is just the lost hope and having to deal with the absolute stubbornness that my Uncle has always shown is what the real cause of my distress really was. Either way, please read Lightning Strikes Twice....I almost feel envious of his ability to mourn, because most days I feel like I am an orge because my mourning period was so short.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

The Transformation of Mr.3 to Mr. Naked Face

So I said that I would post these and I have finally gotten around to it.....please prepare yourselves for the transformation of Mr.3 to his new alter-ego Mr. Naked Face!

First off, he didn't tell me that he was shaving until he came out into the living room where only a I missed the inital mowing down of the goatee. So we begin with this...

He looks quite cop-like doesn't he? But of course, only one shave through on the chin area wasn't enough, so he had to start again....

And while I didn't get any shots of the actually upper-lip shaving....partially because I was still in shock of seeing his will now get the affect of Mr. 3 fully becoming Mr. Naked Face!

 Happy Valley. Every morning when he shaves you can hear "Goddamn Fucking Mormons" being muttered over and over. As to the question of whether or not I like him clean-shaven.....I really don't. I have always known Mr.3 with his goatee and I enjoy it's scratch-i-ness....I honestly can't wait for school to end so that he can grow it back! Goddamn Fucking Mormons! I hate BYU...otherwise known as BYNo.

Saturday, July 01, 2006

Your Aura is Blue

Spiritual and calm, you tend to live a quiet but enriching life.
You are very giving of yourself. And it's hard for you to let go of relationships.

The purpose of your life: showing love to other people

Famous blues include: Angelina Jolie, the Dali Lama, Oprah

Careers for you to try: Psychic, Peace Corps Volunteer, Counselor