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PDF Editor FAQ
How can I recover my money that people have borrowed from me?
There are two categories I consider in the approach:(1) Friends & Family Loans(2) Business Related LoansFriends and Family Loans — I personally rarely, if ever, loan money to friends/family. If I do I give them money with no expectation of getting it back. If they pay me then great, if not then it doesn’t make holidays awkward, because hey, nice new car… where is that money you owe me!?A. 100% of the loan may not be recoverable. NEVER loan them money again.B. Accept a certain percentage of the loan as a loss. Tell them hey, if you can pay me back 50% of the loan we can call it even. NEVER loan them money again.C. Place conditions on the loans that make it worse the longer it takes to repayD. Ask them nicely when can they pay it back, give me a dateE. See if they can pay it back in installments over time, fewer the better is the keyF. If you required collateral for the loan, sell it to satisfy the debt. Use this as a last resort effort if other approaches are just not working at all.G. File a small clams court case but be ready to completely burn that relationship. Not only will you need to provide documentation to prove it was a loan, it will eat up your time and if you are awarded a win you may have to take more steps through the legal system to now get the money from the judgement. This is an entirely new post going this route.Business Related Loans — If you are making a business loan I am assuming you have drafted a loan agreement contract/documentation complete with payment schedules, penalties & interest disclosures, collateral requirements, i.e. = Terms. Everything you would need to legally collect on a default.A. Use an escalated scale for collection. A letter after 30 days lets say. A stronger letter after 60 days. An even stronger one after 90 days… actions in line with what was in the TERMS you suppled.B. Try calling the person & emailing within the process as well. Document the calls, results, etc. What you are doing is slowly building a case if this goes to court. Don’t harass, be professional and consistent.C. Try communicating a settlement option if they respond. 30% discount on the debt, no credit report hits, no late fees for example. Offer what works for you to resolve the bad loan.D. Still if nothing have your lawyer send a certified letter to the debtor to pay or call within X-days or the account will go into litigation.C. Still if nothing, cash in on the collateral if there is some or go into litigation. Sue for monies owed, plus legal fees & court fees. Report to credit bureaus. Keep in mind that when you are granted a win by the court you may have to take more steps to actually get paid. If they don't pay the judgment you can file more paperwork and put a lien on property or garnish wages until your paid. Consult a lawyer in your area on what you can and can not do.D. Sell the loan off to a debt collector for a loss. This is the worst because people who buy bad debt are horrible and they are going to take the debtor through hell!I think that is everything, good luck!
Can a person place a lien on your home for a debt without a court order?
In Texas, yes — with conditions. And, those conditions don’t have anything to do with a court order at this level of the discussion. It has to do with whether you have claimed your home to be your homestead. — You could sue in court to get the lien removed if you thought it was placed on your home incorrectly. If, for instance, I placed a lien on your homestead, and you sued me for that, then you’d win by default, because I can’t place a mechanic’s lien on your homestead. If I’d placed a mechanic’s lien on some home or property you have, which is not your declared homestead, then we would have to argue our cases in court, likely.So, let’s say you had two homes: a $150,000 lake house and a $250,000 city house. If you had declared one to be your homestead (exemption), and that was the property for which I (e.g., a general contractor) had a financial reason to place a mechanic’s lien on your home (→ don’t ask me why it’s called a mechanic’s lien; that’s just the legal term for it; and, yes, an auto mechanic can use the same process to place a lien on your vehicle), I wouldn’t be able to do it.I, as a building contractor, could not place a mechanic’s lien on your homestead property. A bank can place a lien on your home if it has a mortgage on it, but the bank is not going to allow you to collateralize your home for other reasons (i.e., to get some other kind of loan) if the home/property you are pledging is your homestead.I’ll give you a couple of examples.I used to run a concrete plant. One of my customers was redoing a driveway for a man in a neighboring city. My terms with the concrete contractor (hereafter, just “contractor”) were COD; once that concrete was all poured out and on the ground, he owed me payment for the concrete.The contractor set up the time of the delivery for near 5pm under the pretense that his customer (i.e., the homeowner) would be writing us a check, and he was unwilling to leave a blank check with the contractor, so the concrete needed to arrive around 5pm, because his customer would not be home until then.That sounded reasonable to me. I mean, people get off work around 5pm.What was really going on was that the contractor knew the homeowner, who was there watching him, would be gone/not at home at 5pm. — He scheduled the concrete delivery for when the homeowner would not be at home.The concrete was poured out. The last driver asked for payment; he told the driver that he’d worked out special arrangements with me (so that he wouldn’t have to pay then), and the driver believed him and drove off. — My driver did not make the best decision right there, but that’s what happened. In the end, it was best that it happened that way, but the driver could not have known that then.The contractor was, in fact, lying to the driver; there was no arrangement. The homeowner had already paid the contractor for the concrete, in cash. — All of this was just deception.When I got to work the next day, I looked for the contractor’s check (i.e., payment), and I couldn’t find it. That’s when the driver told me the story the contractor had told him, so I immediately get on the phone to try to figure out why the contractor had violated the terms of our sale.I could not get the contractor to pick up or return my calls. — That meant I then had to get in touch with the homeowner, because he had 40+ tons of my concrete in his driveway, and it hadn’t been paid for — not to me.If you act as your own general contractor, then you have to be careful to make sure that the people you hire (i.e., your “virtual” subcontractors) take your money and pay their materials and labor bills. Otherwise, if they do not remit your payments to the correct people, and in a timely fashion, those people have recourse right back to you to ask for payment.It doesn’t matter if you’d already paid the concrete contractor, and he had promised to pay the concrete manufacturing and delivering company. — If he doesn’t do that, then you’re in big trouble, financially, because it’s not like a concrete plant can “repossess” the concrete! — It’s all hardened up and has no value anymore.I drove over to the homeowner’s address and spoke with him in person; told him what happened. He said that he would try to contact the concrete contractor and get this sorted out. In the process, I got his phone number and verified I had the right address for where our property (i.e., concrete) was located.I didn’t hear from the man, so I called him again, and he said he’d had no luck getting in touch with the contractor, either. That’s when I told him that I was very sorry, but that he was ultimately responsible for paying for the concrete — that means making sure that the money he outlays gets transmitted, and is received, by the concrete plant. — He was going to have to pay us for the concrete, which we now considered to be his bill, as he was the homeowner.He would then have the option to sue the concrete contractor to recover his losses due to paying for the same concrete twice. — The homeowner was having nothing to do with that assertion. He told me, “I’m not paying for the same thing twice.”Unfortunately, that then meant I had to tell him that I’d be placing a mechanic’s lien on his property, which would remain there until the debt was paid off. He would not be able to sell his house until the lien was removed. And, if he had a mortgage on the house, my lien would be superior to the bank’s lien, which meant the bank would probably consider him to have breached his mortgage covenants, causing the entire amount of his unpaid mortgage balance to come due immediately.All of that is true! — I’m not making things up.Even if he died and passed the home on to his heirs, the heirs would still have to contend with that mechanic’s lien, meaning they could not sell the home without paying it off. — Liens do not just go away; and, no — I do not have to get a court order to place this lien on your property.The homeowner got off the phone and contacted his attorney, who asked him if his property was classified as his homestead; it was. Ergo, his attorney told him to disregard what I was saying.And, his attorney was right. — As soon as I received a response to one of my demand letters for payment from this homeowner, in which he told me this was his homestead property, I checked to verify that was true, and then I knew I was going to have to pursue some other path.I called the homeowner back and told him, just as a courtesy, that I agreed with his attorney; I could not place a lien on his property, and I just wanted to let him know that I would not be trying to do that. — However, I would be seeking to recover the monies owed to us from the contractor he’d used, and if he ever figured out where the guy was, or spoke with him again, we’d be very appreciative if he would contact us to give us this information.It had always been purely business that I had to assert our rights to place a lien on his property. We did, in fact, provide the concrete to his contractor when the contractor wanted it, which was after our normal hours of operation. He was satisfied with the driveway he got out of the transaction, and currently, he was whole; the contractor had been overpaid by several thousands of dollars due to not remitting the monies destined, by him, for the plant to the plant; and, we were out several thousands of dollars, as ready-mix concrete manufacturing and delivery is a very low-margin business.If he had purchased this concrete for delivery to anywhere but his homestead, then he would have a lien on his property. So, the contractor had put him a perilous situation, and the good guys here were him and us. — He agreed to call me if he ever heard from the guy again.I eventually filed charges against the contractor for theft of product by deception, and after getting a plea deal in which he would plead guilty to a felony; pay restitution to us; and, be on felony probation, he absconded; and, when he was found, he was then sentenced to a year in state prison.Another example of how a court order is not needed is a bank loan. — Let’s say that you have a home and quite a bit of land. On that land you would like to build a rental property to get you some passive income coming in.You have a mortgage on your home and this land, and you have declared the home and this land to be your homestead.You have a bank lien on this property by virtue of having the mortgage, unless for some reason you were able to get the mortgage without having to pledge the land and property in order to get it. — All the bank had to do to file this lien was go see the county clerk. They don’t need a court order.Now, when you say that you want to zone part of the land as commercial, and you need a loan to build the commercial property (e.g., a building, office, parking lot, etc.), you are asking the bank to give you a commercial (business) loan.You’re not amending your mortgage. You’re asking for a commercial loan. Now, if you have your mortgage with some other financial institution, then the bank will be seeking to add a lien on the property you want to build, but the land upon which it sits already has a lien against it, by the other financial institution.Plus, all of this is homestead property.They’re not going to do that! — If you file for bankruptcy, sometime in the future, you’ll be able to shield yourself from repayment of the mortgage for your home and the land, and for the new commercial build (because it sits on your homestead property). → The second bank’s lien will not worth the paper it’s written on.So, if you want the loan, you’re going to have to pledge some other type of collateral. Some property or land that is not part of your homestead.Some liens are placed on your property with your consent (like bank liens). Some (a mechanic’s lien being one type, but surely not the only type) are placed by others on our property due to money disputes. They can be placed without your consent, and without a court order. — If you feel that they have been placed illegally, then you can sue the lienholder for release of lien.In real estate, sometimes a lessee of yours will apply for a grant (let’s say, a federal grant). In order for the federal government to approve the grant award to your lessee, you — the lessor — must agree for a special type of lien to be placed on your property, as technically now the federal government has an interest in your property.This is called an NFI (Notice of Federal Interest), if my memory serves me.That doesn’t mean the grant award gave the federal government ownership in your property. Really, it just alters your lease agreement.For instance, if your lessee goes out of business, then you must look for a similar type of tenant to occupy the property; one that operates a substantially similar type of business. You might ask the federal government to help you in that process.If you can’t find a similar tenant, then you will have to ask the federal government to remove the NFI, which is like a lien. It’s like a lien, because you can’t sell the land without first notifying the federal government that you are selling and assuaging them, for instance, that the nonprofit they gave a grant to will be able to stay there, with the new owner/lessor, as if you were still the owner/lessor.—The nature of the NFI, and the reason I bring it up, is because it is like a mechanic’s lien or bank lien — it remains there in perpetuity, theoretically. Once it’s there, you can only get it taken off if the party who placed the NFI/lien agrees with you.You may get a car loan. Once you make your last payment, you’ll likely, pretty soon, get a new car title in the mail, and it’ll list no lienholders. That proves you’re the sole owner, and the property (i.e., the car) has no encumbrances.Land and fixed asset-type properties are, perhaps, somewhat different. You may have weird cross-collateralization of properties written into loan agreements. While, technically, any officer of the bank can sign the title and return the property to you, unencumbered, they tend not to want to do that.Some liens are superior to others. You get to talking about orderings (i.e., if there are multiple lienholders, and if the property is liquidated, who will get paid first?).If you have a bank lien on your home, which is not your homestead, and then I come and put a mechanic’s lien on your home, because you didn’t pay me what we agreed when I remodeled your kitchen, then my lien will be superior to your bank’s lien, which reduces (potentially) the amount of collateralization your bank loan has, and your debt-to-value ratio.The bank is not going to like that, and it likely violates your mortgage/loan agreement(s) with the bank. — They could then terminate your loan and require you to pay the balance within 10 days, or 30 days, unless you could convince them, or someone else, to refinance your house. Which, they will be loathe to do, considering it has a mechanic’s lien against it.Of course, this is why we place mechanic’s liens. → They are persuasive.Good luck getting a lawsuit filed against me; having me served; and getting a verdict, favorable to you — within 10 days, 30 days, or even longer.Of course, if I foolishly filed a lien against your homestead property, then you win by default, and I’m going to have to figure out some other way to recover your debt.
When have you been ruthless in business and how?
Newspaper Route & Comic Books, Literary Society and The Test Dinner Party and Corporate DramaNewspaper Route & Comic BooksAt 6 years old, I needed cash. I was fiending for it. I had a comic book/action figure Jones and my measly allowance, washing dishes and sweeping and taking out the garbage, that bullshit wasn’t working out.I went to my mother and stepfather and explained that something had to change in this set up or I’d make their lives hell. My mother was like well, get a job or more appropriate t, start a business. I went back to my round king sized bed and contemplated what i could do on Staten Island, a business.Once I’d gotten past drug dealer, abortion doctor and assassin I came back to her with newspapers. I could sell the Sunday newspaper to the neighbors in our building. Just like I brought her the paper in the morning and did the same for a neighbor, I could knock on doors and ask if they wanted to buy it for a slight mark up. 50%. I was young, I was cute, I could pull it off. But I needed a loan, a huge loan to get me started—-and the shopping cart. And an alarm clock. Ok, a huge loan, the shopping cart, an alarm clock and maybe a nice breakfast to get me started at 6am. And hugs, plenty of supportive hugs.My mother wrote up a contract to loan me $5 with repayment terms that I was to pull from my profits. I was also given the rule of knock/ring the door, place the shopping cart before me and the door, never go inside.I signed. She spotted me $5 and that Sunday I bought a wad of papers and started my invented route. I was sold out in 30 minutes. I took the profits and went and bought another round of papers and sold out of those in 30 minutes. I went and did a third time. By the time I got home that first morning, I gave back the bank—-my mother her $5 and had funding cash plus profits for the Jones I was feeding. For months I was up at the crack of dawn, knocking on doors, selling more and more papers. More profits meant I could buy more at a time—10, 20, 40 papers at a time so I could do one good trip, one good round and go back home.My babysitter’s niece and nephew lived in the buildings up the block. They wanted to know if I would teach them, hire them. I did. I broke off some of my papers, they sold them and I paid them for every batch they sold, different than the 50% price we were reselling for. I pointed out, the more of your profit you pour back in, the more papers I can front you, the more you’ll make. I was acting as the bank, as my mother had, but they never worked multiple waves to build up their profit cache, they worked like one or two.Then the niece, let’s call her Agnes—-Agnes says I should split the TOTAL Sunday profits 3 ways. Agnes was older and taller than me. I told her to take a deep breath and think this through. Careful, bitch, careful.Agnes, rather threateningly loomed over me that she could just take it away. Her bother, Johnny, my age, agreed. Agnes added that unless I agreed to a 1/3 split, she and Johnny would just go buy papers themselves and sell in their buildings and not use me as a bank nor cut me into the profits (they were technically franchisees.)I asked was she sure? Agnes haughtily said yes. Johnny yelled yes. I politely told them they were both fired and walked away.I went home and explained this to my mother who explained that I’d done the right business thing but babysitting time might get dicey.I went and we played and laughed that whole week and then Sunday came. I continued my route, I assumed they continued in their buildings. This went on for a few weeks until their aunt approached my mother, Agnes and Johnny had no funding capital and I’d told them they were fired. My mother explained what had happened. They were employees (at best franchisees) and had jumped out of pocket. I was the sole owner of my business, it was up to me.I smiled politely and continued my business. I fired my first employees at 7, that still gives me a special tickle to my heart when I think about it. Agnes and Johnny, having taken on the position of employees (at best franchisees) misunderstood that they held the least power in the relationship, particularly with no financial backing. I could cut them out, fire them, wait them out, take them back or do nothing. That’s the power of being the owner.We moved.Comic Books and CopyrightA few years later I’m in Middle School. Again I need cash. I would visit my mother at her job at AT&T and we’d meet my stepfather and go to dinner. I would sit at a desk coloring or reading comics or doing my homework or making photocopies.I got a brilliant idea. I would enlarge panels and make posters of comic books.I went back to school and told all the comic geeks—-what posters do you want? 25, 50 cents, $1, $2 specialty color orders. I was doing weekly deliveries in a month, collecting cash and breaking all copyright laws.Then we started playing role playing games but everyone wanted the game rules, campaign books—-I started copying the campaign books. I’d buy them for $6, photocopy and sell for $3,Then I was like, we have so many original ideas. I actually came up with the Vision being merged into the Hulk!What if we created our own comic books? Our own comic book company? Published and sold them around the country?How to recruit? What would be the membership charge monthly?Comic fans would send in letters to a comic and they’d be printed on the last page—-I copied them down—-on my Commodore 128 typed up intro letters and a membership form and for a measly $25 you could join!I used the proceeds from one venture to create the other and got dozens of members. My best friend was the VP. Then he moved to Long Island. Then he got lazy. Then I fired him. By now my mother was used to explaining to parents that if their children didn’t hold up to the bargain, implied contracts, occasionally written contracts I’d created, they could be fired. Yes, she acknowledged, her son was a bit ruthless.Literary Society and The 48 Laws of Power at A Dinner PartyFast forward to college. The comic book amateur company had run it’s course after about 5 years. I was just writing/being a student, looking for the next opportunity. I get to undergrad SUNY, I start writing for the newspaper, the magazine, the Literature chapbooks, the graduate chapbooks. I’m on a tear. Mainly because I have a sense of my work as product and not writer angst. So I make deals with editors—-for instance the school magazine published 16 times a semester—-if they would give me three cover story slots—-I would do them, deliver, but I needed a column, ten short story slots. To the Editor in Chief it was a dream come true—-he had guaranteed content from me.The Lit Society asked me to become an Editor and hinted, the mostly female group that had started it that in a couple of years they’d all be graduating so I could be in line to be the Lit Society Club President and Editor in Chief.Hmmm. I’d now progressed in my entrepreneurial thoughts to OPM in business—-Other People’s Money—-using the capital of others—-namely SUNY—-and I’d long thought the University's money would be an excellent resource to experiment with.I turn to the newspaper and I’m dropping stories to them and to the magazine and the yearly Lit Society chapbook—-there were some grumbles and upset—-back then I didn’t think it was racial or jealousy or a combination of both—-now looking back, the lack of Black students writing for the publications—-I actually pulled a friend in so there would be two of us at the magazine and newspaper —-was a factor that I was too young to completely codify. Also jealousy—-I had a huge output—-I’d started going through the Writer’s Market book and sending out 20–50 manuscripts/stories/poems a month.(I have a blind spot about jealousy because I’m an only child so I’ve never had envious situations. I’ve also been mainly en-cultured with adults so I’ve always operated at an adult level—-applying an adult level of production, perfectionism, interest and strategy to things that younger people generally learn not find immediately natural.)Year 3 comes around and the old guard that had started the Lit Society Club and published the chapbook are all in their Senior years and leaving within a semester or so. By the Student Government laws (we’re in April) we have to vote in a new cabinet. I’ve dutifully been an Editor for two years. There was a bit of a feminist slant to the Board, it had been created by young White women and it’s primary supporters on faculty were White female professors. I noted this but didn’t think it would be an issue as I was friends with everyone. I often forget I’m Black. And male. And tall. Call it past lives as a woman haze.My mother though she’s chatting me up about my work, school, extra curricula moves and we’re discussing her entrepreneurial businesses and then my interest in the magazine or the Lit Society—-becoming EIC or President & EIC.We decide that the Lit Society is where I should start first, to experiment with OPM and publishing before taking over the magazine—-and the chapbook has more freedom than the magazine.Now there’s a 1 credit 15 slot management responsibility that comes with anyone who signs up for credit. It’s a lot but I’ve been TAing for three years by then for several professors, in fact I’m the only undergraduate TA in the history of SUNY. Normally you have to be a graduate student but since I’m 3 years older than most Freshman and have extensive work experience, I’ve been granted the position and I’m also getting a paycheck for it, eventually totaling as high as a grad student’s. Again, I’m obtuse that these might be extraneous issues to my running for President.My mother is like race, gender, sexual orientation, your TA position, the credits, it’s all going to come up and it’s going to get ugly. Here’s what you have to do:First she sends me a certificate of accomplishment, naming me as President and EIC, three months before the election. She tells me to hang it up in my apartment, to focus and visualize it coming to pass.Then she’s like, make a list of everyone involved and notations about each one of them, what you know, grudges, who they like and dislike—-files on everyone.Then she’s like you need leverage—-it’s essentially a popularity contest—-due to race and maleness and spite, I’m not going to win just based on capability, I have to stack the deck.All elections take place on say the 2nd Friday of April. But by the 1st Friday of April all school clubs have to have spent up their entire budget for the year (anywhere from $500 to $10,000) or have it committed in signage/promissory notes for the SUNY office to pay (say you order jackets for your club for graduation—-the check might not need to be cut until the last week of April for the jackets to be made and delivered by the 2nd week of May but the money must be spoken for).Now the chapbook had been paid for once a semester, it cost $1000 to print several hundred copies but the budget of the Lit Society was always about $250 a semester—-they had to beg these professors to write checks—normally their supporting White female teachers.I explain all these machinations to my mother and she’s like that’s where you have leverage. We talk about all the people I know, and because I’m a TA, I know students from all class levels and lots of groups that they belong to. Go to those clubs, the last week, when everyone HAS to get their budget to zero or the SUNY review assumes they gave them too much money and lessens their new year budget. Catch them a few days before the deadline and clubs will sign off on giving you thousands of dollars.Which is what I do. Now I have a stack of signed promissory notes for thousands of dollars for the coming year, more than the Lit Society has ever raised before—-the LGBT club, The Black Student Association, Fraternities, Latin Association, the Chess Club!But I tell the clubs that the Board meeting/election is happening early, the Thursday before the deadline, if I don’t become President—-I’ll tear up all the promissory notes but I’ll redirect all the monies to other clubs I work with.Deal.The Lit Board meeting begins—-a guy who was desperately trying to seduce me warns that not everyone likes me. he was White, I should’ve known, ready to roll over and die—-no spine……glad I never let him touch me.The President, let’s call her Chastity, suggests something that in 5 years has never happened, after everyone announces their interest in positions. (I’d locked up the other positions—Closet Guy for VP, a young lady for Treasurer and another guy for Secretary—-it will be a new clean Board to start off with.)Chastity says she'll stay President for another semester, though technically she’s graduating in May, and then I can become President in January of the following year. For January to April. I ask if in the 5 years of the Lit Society existing has this ever happened or been done before? They all admit no.Then out of left field, a girl we shall call Jane jumps out at me that I need to be quiet and stay in place and not forget they started this and they’ll structure it as they will, even as they leave. (Amazingly, completely justifying some social experiment, Jane had been the nicest to me over the years and I’d never seen her so…venomous. Most tellingly, no one came to my defense.)I politely look over my left shoulder, then my right shoulder. There’s a room full, maybe 25 people and I ask her: “Who the fuck do you think you’re talking to in that tone?”Then I rip her a new one, sideways, in Latin, with a double axle twist.Five minutes later when I’m done with her, she actually ran out of the room crying.I turn to the rest of them and I say:I’ve put in the years as an Editor, supporter, etc,I have more than enough experience, in fact I’m more qualified than them to run the credit granting aspectand over qualified than any of them to manage a business and I will not settle for a halfsies Presidency.Oh, and I have thousands of dollars , I slap the promissory letters on the conference room table, that are attached to me as President. The letters are commitments to me. I’ll take them/the cash, thousands of dollars to another club. And they, whomever is left from this shit show can beg yet another year for crumbs and crackers.And, as you can see, I don’t take shit from anyone. I’ll shoot a kitten in the face if it comes at me the wrong way.Chastity says they have to vote now.We cast our ballots and step into the hallway where a couple of people tell me I went too far cutting Jane a new one, she’s one of the original members/creators, I poisoned the waters. I reply that I’ll be a strong president and strength doesn’t take shit from anyone, no one, no matter position I have or don’t, gets to disrespect me like that.A true leader must be a balance of compassion and ruthlessness so that you are capable of both helping and protecting those around you; if they saw me kowtow to her they would know that one, I was weak and two, I couldn’t protect them when the time might come.(Three, bitch had it coming. If you can’t ride, don’t get on the horse. My mother was calling from her house in teh mountains but also from our apartment in Brooklyn. G’wan, blood clot with the bullshit. Don’t bring none, won’t be none! We don’t play that kind of mouth-smack in Crooklyn. She lucky I wasn’t a girl like her, might have tied up my dreds and gone across the table……..)The Vote Is InWe go back in.By an overwhelming vote, I’m voted in as President and EIC.I warmly thank everyone.They ask me my plans—-I open my leather portfolio—-because I’d been able to talk to the VP, Treasurer and Secretary candidates, they are the ones I wanted and I have some ideas……One, we won’t be dependent on begging professors to pay printing bills, I’ve covered that with the money my name has obtained.Two, I’m going to change the printing schedule and size of the chapbook. I have some bigger marketing ideas for the singular rather than two chapbooks we’ll produce.Three, we’re going to hold more events—-poetry readings and such.Four, I’ve got some other professors on-board who’ve wanted to be involved for years but it was a little too heavily feminist for their tastes—-we’re going to democratize and expand to include all colors and orientations.Five, but first I want to personally thank everyone with a gift to them all.Out of my portfolio I pull out the next stage in my mothers plan—-beautifully printed invitations for a dinner party in 2 weeks at my house with a full banquet meal prepared by me.“For all of the hard work you’ve all done over the years, I want to given the graduating, exiting Board/creators a grand send off. And for everyone else, rather than just the cookies and soda one time event, I want to give them all a beautiful dinner for all of their hard work and commitment.”Did I mention my mother was a psychology major at Baruch?Scene shifts to my rushing upstairs to the office, calling her long distance, we did it! She asks did I hand out the invitations? I say yes. I’m putting in the voucher now for the food from Wegman’s. (Yes, my first official act was to pay for all of this with OPM. I’m no fool.)Now the design of the dinner party is simple, a psychologically ruthless trap she’s devised. Everyone who has honestly worked hard will attend the party, those who haven’t, subconsciously, they won’t be able to. I’m like—-nah, old woman, you’re crazy, that will never work.Two weeks later—-I’ve prepared a feast, enough food for 40 people.Slowly people start milling in. None of the old Board arrives—-except for Jane who has apologized for her attack. And honestly, she had worked tirelessly on the whole club. All of my Board shows up. Plus the new people I’ve brought in. But only Jane and another young lady of the old guard. Interesting.By the end of the evening, my mother’s ploy had proven who were the hard workers, the loyalists, the malcontents.I went on to really experiment with the club, throwing galas at the Art Gallery—-a beautiful glass four story design; shifting the chapbook to free for SUNY folk but expanding it to being for sale through bookstores throughout the city to generate revenue back in to pay for the future expenses and getting more monies in from clubs who now feel included in the chapbook, etc..The Treasurer had to go to Australia for an internship, but still needed the 2 credits, could we work something out? Sure. We agreed that I could sign off as the President and as the Treasurer and she got her credits. The VP was a fool who I never pressured to come in to meetings, just gave him his credit to get rid of his uselessness, but I held his vote/power; the same for the Secretary. Benevolent dictatorship.In Sum….What I learned was the machinations of power, leverage, ruthlessness and OPM and the psychology of power. To her credit, my mother predicted a lot of their actions and reactions and helped solidify what my strengths were and paying attention to my blind spots. Her own entrepreneurial and management strengths were focused through me as a learning lens. I doubted her tactics but her strategy was sound.Frankly, they (from childhood to college…I haven’t even told my corporate intrigue tales of ruthlessness) never had a chance.When I reflect upon it, it was like she was a puppet master and orchestrating how I could get into power.Secondly, when I got a copy of the 48 Laws of Power, it was like old hat. Between her and my father, they had taught me so many tactics—-the velvet gloved claw—-to plan several steps ahead—-to not tolerate public attack—-to be magnanimous (I accepted Jane’s apology—-I never forgot her attack though and made sure that I quietly but succinctly eliminated her from contact, control, influence…with a smile and often asked her “advice”. She’s gone on to be a published author and teacher—-I also keep an eye on people through social media.)Once, years later, I used similar tactics, and I shifted an entire national organization through deft moves, for the better, I hope. I think of ruthlessness as neutral, like capitalism. There are times when emotion has to be put aside, when there is a greater good or just a greater prize to be had.I’m a good person, I’m not a nice person.There are times though when I’m oblivious to discrimination by gender, sex, sexual orientation and I’ve had to quickly surmise and act to offset attack, smeared reputation, exit myself from insane professional situations…and make it look like fate, chance, the other person’s idea.Have I hurt people?I suppose so. I am a force in life, I expect that I’ve hurt people that I’m both aware of and not aware of. There were some that was darkly intentional and others that were unintentional.But here’s where I differ in two respects—-I take full responsibility for my actions and I always tell adversaries to their face what I will do, have done. I don’t play passive aggressive games, I don’t pretend, I don’t shrug innocently.I look you dead ass in the face and say,“Yeah, I fucking did it to you. Merry Christmas. Smooches.”#KylePhoenix