Wednesday, March 31, 2010

The Spenders and the Savers

There are two types of people: Those who like to brag about how much money they spend on something, and those who like to brag about how much they save. I had a friend who loved to tell people how much he spent on his outfits: $150 Jeans and $75 T-shirts. Bragging about how much you spend on something tells people that you have money (or at least you act like you do)'s a way of expressing status, success, and style. Maybe because I grew up on five-dollar-a-bag yard sale clothes, I'm of the other mentality. When someone compliments my skirt, I blurt out, "Thanks! Three dollar clearance rack at Target!" Bragging about saving money is to show that you're smart, thrifty, and maybe a little shameless.

Saving money is not glamorous and it certainly isn't easy. Just ask Tommie how much he loves stopping on the side of the road to grab free lamps, or trekking throughout the state of Massachusetts to retrieve $40 bookcases and $10 tables from Craigslist because I think new furniture that costs hundreds of dollars is a racket. (Note the growing pile of dirt cheap furnishings for our new apartment.)
I only want to pay what I think something is really worth (okay, maybe even a little less because I'm I sound like I'm 85 again?). The thing is, I'm young and I make peanuts, but I do wonder if I'd change if I ever did make money. It would be easier to just order what I wanted, brand new. It would be easier to chose the outfit on the mannequin instead of picking my way through a disorganized clearance rack at the back of the store. It's not easy trying to save on everything, but it is more rewarding. It's like a game to find the best deals and a challenge to make it work. Or maybe that's what I tell myself to feel better about not being rich....either way, I don't think I could really ever change my thrifty nature. There are savers and there are spenders, and we all have our reasons.

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