super convenience

In our household, I manage the bills. Money comes into our account via paycheques or shady off-shore dealings and money laundering (so clean!), and once a month I log in and pay utility bills for the month. I don’t mind doing this, and it allows me to stay on top of our finances and also sleep at night without worrying that our internet is going to be turned off because someone who isn’t me has a laissez-faire attitude towards Big Business and due dates.

I recently was convinced that paying bills manually was so Sense and Sensibility, so in an attempt to be future-tastic I decided I would convert all our utilities to a pre-authorized withdrawal from our account so I could sit back and enjoy the finer things in life like fish eggs and dirt fungus fed to me by well-oiled men with excellent muscle definition and minimal clothing. The automatic payments were easy to set up with few exceptions (two accounts that only allow for the minimum payment or the entire balance, neither of which work for me), and I was ready to begin a life of techno-leisure.

.. until today, when I decided to check up on things to make sure everything was still ready to go. Oh, all the accounts are set up properly and there is no suspicious activity on anything (those brothel charges were mine), but I’m a closeted control freak: when I pay the bills, all the bills are paid by the 15th and I don’t have to think about it until the following month. On this brand new fangled “pre-auth” system, the payments come out of the account WHENEVER THEY DAMN WELL PLEASE which means I now have to actively keep track of when money needs to be available so things don’t get complicated. So, old system: 10 minutes of work a month. New system: spreadsheets, multiple account logins, actual budgeting, and stress. HOW IS THIS BETTER? The future SUCKS!

As advanced and space-age as the future is what with all the jetpacks and vacuum tubes and tiny hand computers, some things are still stuck in 1963 and are very slowly trying to catch up with the rest of the world. Unfortunately, until they take that huge leap to “completely useful” and not “hey, we’re trying”, some things should probably remain in the past. I suppose I should be glad that I don’t have to resort to paying things by cheque (Apple, I’m looking at you – seriously, what the fuck) or actually step foot into a meatspace bank (except on payday, because I get adorable paper cheques from work every two weeks-ish and my bank doesn’t have the “take a picture with your phone” thing). I’m still annoyed, though. My old system was so EASY and now I have charts. Not the good kind of charts (flow), either – the bad kind, with numbers and non-delicious pies.

Now I want pie. Can I afford pie? I think I have a pie spreadsheet.

the future of healthcare

GUYS the most awesome thing just happened!

I’m three days away from being completely out of crazy pills, and I am far, far too lazy to go to the doctor to get a new prescription. I know it’s my health and putting on clothes is really a small price to pay for some of that sweet sweet Canadian health care, but it is seriously a huge pain in the ass to get done – an hour+ out of my workday, a random doctor who doesn’t really care (“are you sure you’re not just depressed because you’re fat?”), having to convince someone new each time that I’m not six years old and can handle more than thirty days of medication at a time, and so on and so forth. I’ll gladly (well, maybe not gladly but you get the point) go see a clinic doctor if something else is wrong – say, I’ve grown a third head or my kidneys fell out – but the amount of hassle for a routine prescription really gets my goat.

SO! Instead of promising myself I’d go to the clinic tomorrow or maybe Friday but FOR SURE before I completely ran out of meds, I decided to give Medeo a try. Medeo is an online health care system that allows you to see a licensed BC doctor right from your computer or smartphone, and it is completely awesome. I signed in today for an appointment, and was immediately talking with a super-helpful receptionist. She took some information from me then booked me in for an appointment: in 20 minutes I could talk to a doctor, and all I had to do was keep the window open. I was able to keep working (aka sending dirty tweets and arranging a trip to Seattle) while waiting to see the doctor instead of idly leafing through outdated fashion magazines and glaring at the clock; a pleasant change.

My appointment time came and I checked in, spoke briefly with the receptionist again, and was talking to a doctor a minute later. I had already provided my BC Care Card number and preferred pharmacy, so after chatting for a few minutes the doctor filled my prescription and sent it right over to the pharmacy – I can pick up my meds later today. The doctor also offered to help me find a regular family doctor, and when I told her about my current IUD issues, referred me to a local doctor on Broadway and Cambie who is “the best IUD insertion specialist in all of BC”. Both the receptionist and doctor I spoke with today were crazy awesome, and I couldn’t be happier with the speed and service and amazing convenience of Medeo. Seriously, if you’re in BC, give it a try*. So cool.

Oh! And I just checked my Medeo account, and the doctor’s notes are already there complete with my prescription, where it was sent and when I can get it, the info on getting a regular doctor, and the IUD Expert’s contact information. This is amazing! I am pleased! And so should you all be pleased, as this means I will continue taking my crazy pills and therefore not go on any kind of rampage anytime soon!

*: Obviously using Medeo is for things that don’t require a physical examination – otherwise I would have taken care of my IUD issue right then and there – so please approach with common sense. Don’t use Medeo if you’re currently on fire or bleeding heavily from the eyes or you’ve fallen and can’t get up. DO use Medeo if you need a prescription or you have a non-life-threatening medical concern or you’d like to have some tests done (seriously, they can email you the test form and you print it out and go to the lab for various fluid work or exams). Check the website if you’re not sure, or call 911 if you’re on fire. Don’t just go on Twitter. I learned that lesson the hard way.