(Official-Sounding Disclaimer: This post is meant to be a humorous look at my own experience with bargains in our marriage and in no way generalizes gender behavior. Or behavior of normal people, for that matter. However, if either shoe fits, please feel free to wear it.)
For most of our marriage, I’ve handled our budget and bills (no, this isn’t the funny part.) I’m always looking for ways to cut expenses, and for two years, I’ve had my eye on our home phone and cable bill. For two years, hubby has resisted.
A few months ago, hubby finally sat through my entire spiel, which included how much our bill is each month. That got his attention. I told him we could save about $25 a month by stripping cable down to the basic package. The bill is in his name, so I handed him the phone and number and went back to paying bills.
Twenty minutes later, hubby walked in wearing a grin.
“So, how much less will our bill be?” I asked, excited at the possibility of more money in savings.
“Well…the bill’s going to be about the same,” he said.
“What do you mean? The same amount for less service?”
“No, I got us more for less.” He was all kinds of excited because they gave us another tier of programming (more channels we don’t watch), call waiting (no one calls, there is no waiting), conference calling (why??) My attention faded as he rambled on about more phone features we didn’t need.
I wondered how he could see the bargain in adding more stuff we didn’t need.
Just so you know I’m not picking on dear hubby, I’m going to turn the tables and dish on my own bargain hunting. First off, I’m a multiples shopper. What this means is that when something goes on sale, or I’ve got a great coupon, I’ll buy enough to last several months (as long as it’s non-perishable.) What this also means is that shelf space can become limited, which drives hubby nuts. He sees it as me being a hoarder-in-training.
Yes, I bought 11 boxes of the organic cereal the kids love when it was 99 cents a box (normally $2.99.) I tried to hide it, but there are 9 bottles of foaming hand soap in our linen closet. It was a discontinued scent I picked up for $1.25 a bottle. Yeah, I brought home another bottle of bleach (I still have a few items of clothing without splatters) but it was FREE!
I did buy 12 new books last summer during a killer sale – some of them were even hard cover. It only cost me $27. I know my bookshelf was already full, but even a bad book never spoils. I found Nike backpacks on sale and bought spares, since the kids will wear them out. In April, I stocked up on winter clearance clothing, which I will store until it cools down in October.
I can’t pass up a $3 shirt.
Just like hubby can’t pass up getting more channels and phone features at no additional cost.
I’ll remember this when I ignore a call waiting beep and feel guilty when I see the caller ID displayed on our TV. I hope he can do the same if the 34 rolls of toilet paper spill out of the cabinet when he opens the door 🙂
Do you shop for bargains? Are your habits similar to those of people you live with?