Wednesday, January 03, 2007

The Weirdest Things Save Me

Do you ever WANT to spend money but find that something prevents you from actually doing it? Sometimes I feel like I would spend a lot more money if it weren't for certain totally random things. I am thinking about it today because I was laid up with the flu for a couple of days-- though I did do a little post-Xmas shopping when I was staying with my parents, I had intended to do even more this past weekend, but instead I was cooped up at home and all I spent was the $20 I gave to one of my friends who delivered saltine crackers, bananas, ginger ale and Pepto Bismol.
Another thing that has come in handy is that I am extremely sensitive to the itchiness of wool. I love wool sweaters and always find myself lusting after cashmere turtlenecks, but try as I might, even the softest cashmere still drives me nuts. I also seem to often find myself between shoe sizes for some reason. I remember when I was working at my first job after college and I needed to build up a better wardrobe-- I ordered a cashmere turtleneck and some suede shoes from J. Crew which would have been very incompatible with my $19k/year salary! But the turtleneck was itchy and the shoes didn't fit, so back they went.
Here's another biggie: watching TV often gives me a splitting headache. I don't know what it is about my eyes, but I can't handle watching TV for more than an hour or two. Yes, everyone who knows that I don't have a TV thinks I'm some kind of cultural highbrow type, not knowing that I'd actually be glued to monster truck races and Jerry Springer until a migraine came on! But it's enough of a problem that I don't want to buy a TV, won't get cable, and don't even rent that many DVDs to watch on my computer. I also completely avoid seeing advertisements for things I might otherwise be tempted to buy.
Does anyone else have weird things like this? Allergic to caviar and lobster, perhaps? Fear of flying keeps you from taking expensive vacations? Too tall to fit in a Ferrari? Please share...

12 comments:

Tiredbuthappy said...

The most comfortable underwear I own come from the dollar store. They're all cotton, and come in a range of inoffensive solid colors. The Victoria's Secret ones only come out when the dollar store ones are all in the laundry.

HC said...

I can't wear cashmere either! Itchy itchy itchy.

However, I can't say that I share your problem with TV. Unlike a lot of folks in these parts, I ADORE good TV and won't cut back any more than basic cable. And I absolutely do look forward to the day on which my budget has room for digital and HBO. Silly me.

LuckyLily said...

We were snowed-in this year and didn't do any post-holiday shopping. Also, my husband is allergic to alcohol. Not only does this save money, but I always have a designated driver to parties!

The Financista said...

This isn't quite in the same category, but the year after I graduated from college, I did a year of service with an organization called the Jesuit Volunteer Corps. Our stipend was $155 per month including all food. That limitation kept me from buying all sorts of things that I probably thought I needed but really didn't. I usually even had money left over! Looking back, it was a great lesson in simplicity and frugality, one that I am glad I learned early on. Now, if only I could still stick to that kind of budget these days...

The Financista said...

This isn't quite in the same category, but the year after I graduated from college, I did a year of service with an organization called the Jesuit Volunteer Corps. Our stipend was $155 per month including all food. That limitation kept me from buying all sorts of things that I probably thought I needed but really didn't. I usually even had money left over! Looking back, it was a great lesson in simplicity and frugality, one that I am glad I learned early on. Now, if only I could still stick to that kind of budget these days...

fin_indie said...

It's interesting...being really, really busy at work has prevented me from taking all sorts of expensive trips. I'm lucky if I get one budget international trip a year. God knows I'd love to be taking several of those!

You'd think that after a 2 week vacation over the holidays, the last thing I'd be talking about is vacation, but man I really want more vacation time!!

Single Ma said...

Maaan, can I relate to this!

I love seafood, but I'm allergic to shell fish.

I love going on cruises, but I get severe motion sickness.

I want to buy a new desktop, but my old one won't die already. lol

BTW, we had the same 3 course meal (saltines, ginger ale and pepto) for 3 days. Hated it! Glad you're feeling better.

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure this entirely fits your category but it's an amusing fact of my life, a pattern observed too often.

Everytime I spend a fortune to buy an item - say, $70 for a pair of Aerosoles that I would love to wear to work, they kill me, in some way. If it's shoes, they hurt my feet, if it's a sweater, it'll shrink, if it's a t-shirt, it'll rip or go shapeless in some weird way.

But when I go completely bargain/frugal, the thing will last me forever. Case in point - my two pairs of extremely comfortable (read - get plenty of use!) platform-y shoes from Aldo/Target, each costing under $20. My wear-them-all-the-time sweaters from H&M for about $16 a-piece, which, after 2 years of washing and wearing, get rave compliments! Versus my sweater vest for about $50 from Brooks Brothers that shrunk during dry-cleaning!!! Or should I mention that $20 bag from Chinatown that broke a strap during its first day of ue, which I then repaired and is now my faithful companion??

I guess I am forced to be frugal - because the cheap stuff always seems to last longer and wear better!!!

jtc said...

I remember one time when a couple of friends and I were totally commited to going to a stip club that evening, but I drank a jagermeister when I shouldn't have, got sick, and had to go home.

Later that night, the strip club caught on fire, burned to the ground, and all of my friends died.

That shot of jagermeister saved my life!

Anonymous said...

Because I am over 60, my needs have changed. No more fashion that isn't comfortable. Can't wear itchy wool, can't use tons of make up that cakes, can't put irritating perfume directly on skin, can't wear high heels anymore, can't carry HEAVY purses with lots of hardware,etc.

Anonymous said...

I can't wear heels because I have back pain, meaning that I own very few pairs of shoes and wear the same sport sandals constantly. It also means that I try to carry the lightest purse possible, which is generally something from Target that's made out of cloth--no leather for me. I actually am allergic to lobster (and all shellfish). And I can't wear wool or cashmere, either. Wow! I never realized that these things were blessings in disguise.

Anonymous said...

I have a good one. . . I hate the taste of coffee! Everytime I hear one of those personal finance people suggest you can become a millionaire by saving the money you spend on a latte at Starbucks I snicker to myself with glee.