If just reading the title of this article makes you on edge, and has you thinking about whether you could be, read on!
I can tell you, although some like to sugar coat being a cheapskate, there are others that defy human understanding when it comes to the term. I recently watched the “Extreme Cheapstakes” program on TV and had to turn it off because I really couldn’t deal with some of their extreme ways. I cannot fathom not using toilet paper (one gal didn’t) and I can’t count the times I flush (so I can pay my share of the water bill), or lock up my food so my husband doesn’t get any. And while in some of those (loosely called) households it was a competition to see who could save the most, or live “happily” without – that’s way beyond my personal comprehension.
All of us could be in one way or another considered a cheapskate at some level – but certainly the majority of us deserve a nicer term to describe the ways we save money on everyday necessities. And while some of us don’t mind spending whatever it takes on food, cars or movies – but hate spending money on clothes, shoes or dental work, that doesn’t make us a cheapskate at all.
I mention the things in the last paragraph to try and take advantage of hitting a nerve with one or two of you reading this piece. Thinking about it you might just know that you’d buy the $200 shoes, and forget the 6 month dental cleaning. Or you’d water down the milk and juice in your house so that you could actually get a 6 pack to take to the Super Bowl party without going over your food budget. But would you dumpster dive for food at fancy restaurants instead of buying any food, or would you serve that food to guests? Some extreme cheapskates would!
If you ever want to feel better about the crazy things you do, day in and day out to save a few dollars – your hard earned dollars by the way, to use on something else – just watch the show once. I already feel better about reusing things around here. And while I thought I did it “to save the environment” or for some other noble reason, I realize I do it because constantly buying new costs more than I want to spend.
And so, even though, I do reuse, repurpose, take things people have given me and use them till there is no life left in them – I now realize I am definitely not a cheapskate. Are you?