Tag Archives: email

Day 2 – They Know

26 Feb


I might as well have sent up a flare that said I gave up shopping.

I turned on my computer and coffee pot this morning to indulge my two a.m. needs: education and stimulation. And this is what met me in my inbox. Before 9 a.m.

At 8:42 a.m. there were 11 emails offering coupons and in store discounts. 19 more would arrive before noon.

The hardest part, and this could be because I haven’t had a weekend of “fasting” yet, is that I can’t look at all the websites I would normally check on during the course of the day.

No skimming through j.crew’s online sale – their email said it’s fantastic and I should drop by – or following hyperlinks to see how much the outfit cost and where I could put it together for less – thanks People.

Just an innocent pair of $300 shoes dropping by my inbox to say hello, asking a simple question. “What’s new?”

They have to be at least $300. They just look like something I couldn’t afford. Rock-chic. Well balanced. Braided leathers with studs. Sandy colored and a platform to boot. Someone put me out of my misery and compare them to rent. Or food. Or ANYTHING.

Or else I might keep thinking how well they’d go with my blue silk dress.

2 down …


Day 1 – What?!?!?

26 Feb

Day 1. Big Day.

Ash Wednesday. First day of Lent. First day for giving things up.

Useful things. Needless things. 40 days of going the distance. Can you do it? Can you give something meaningful up and regardless of missing it, wanting it, needing it make it to Easter Sunday without indulging.

When I was kid there was always the “Give up TV” rule instituted by the dictatorship. I think that would last about a week before the TV started to stay on slightly past the 6:00 news and slide down the slippery slope towards prime time.

When that didn’t work, things “given up” became more service minded – Mom asking for 40 days of peace in the house – minimal petty arguing among those in the peanut gallery. Riiiight.

Then, as you got older, you started to use Lent to redeem your New Years Resolution. “Well, I was going to start eating better and working out – I know! I’ll give up sweets!” So you stop swinging by the office candy desk – we’ve all got one – and try and make an extra trip or two to the gym in the course of the week and, by the home stretch, well you’re not exactly eating the forbidden Girl Scout Samoa ice cream, but a hershey kiss won’t hurt anyone.

Except I don’t hanker after sweets. Well, ok, maybe once in a while I get into that mode where if I don’t have chocolate now, heads will roll, but that’s very rare. So giving up sweets really isn’t the way to go. And I could say instead of giving something up, I’ll just make a concerted effort to do something better – generosity, forgiveness, etc. But it’s not enough. I mean it is. But it isn’t.

So this is how I stuck my foot in my mouth – Or took my hand out of my wallet as it were.

The conversation went (something) like this:

  • Me: How’s the brownie?
  • Lunch Buddy: Eh. It’s ok. I think it’s from yesterday.
  • Me: Bummer. I could use something sweet. Gave it up for Lent though.
  • LB: Really? You don’t have much of a sweet tooth. You should give up something else.
  • Me: What?
  • LB: Yea. Something big. Sweets are small.
  • Me: Something big? What? Like, shopping?
  • LB: (Huge Eyes accompanied by a shriek.) YEAH!!!!!!

Everyone knows the economy isn’t doing well, poor kid, but that really isn’t the reason I’m doing this. And getting further out of debt is just a side bar – my original New Years resolution (btw) that I have kept up with – this truly will be a test.

How do I know?

Well the reaction from just about everybody I told started with the same air gasping shriek. Followed by “Seriously? You’re not going to be able to do that!”

I’m not a credit card wielding, couture buying, sample sale fighting diva. I’m a bargain hunting, sale watching, price adjusting shopper. But either way you can get yourself into trouble if you’re doing the a fore mentioned methods of procurement.

I’m not in serious trouble, but I have had to push off a few major purchases because of a killer pair of boots I’ve just picked up or a skirt that was so dirt cheap on sale you can’t make it yourself for that price.

My point is that shopping is a big part of my life. I use it for stress and celebration alike, shopping for myself or for others, so giving this up for 40 days is going to be difficult.

Extremely difficult. And I know this.

There will be no new shoes. There will be no sale rack hand bags or jewelry bin deals. There will be no shopping. For 40 days.

There are ground rules. I am allowed to pay off debt with money usually diverted to shopping, as well as maintain my normal monthly bills. I am not allowed to hand over my credit or debit card for anything which has a price tag on it that needs to be removed. No new houseware items. No new clothing. No new shoes – that one hurts so much I’ve said it twice. Nothing second hand either. No loop holes!

39 and counting… Here we go.

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