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Thursday, November 12, 2009

Frugal Fatigue vs Abundance

I was reading something in the New York Times a few days ago. Evidently, though sales of many things remain DOWNDOWNDOWN, sales of shoes remain unaffected by the exonomic down turn. The author opined that many are experiencing frugal fatigue.

I love being frugal, but I have succumbed to a few items of late: the tote bag I wanted from Lands End, which was on sale for $12.00 as a St Nick's Pick (!); while I was at it, I also got some jeans that seem to fit from the same place (Audrey skinny jeans). Thanks Lands End for offering free shipping to frugal girls like me.

The offers keep coming in to my inbox: 20-30% off at Garnet Hill, Chico's, Banana Republic (and others under the Gap umbrella), Talbots, and on and on.

Having long experience of frugality, I still intone to myself: WAIT. Everything will be on sale in about 6 weeks, by which time you probably won't want it anyway.

And just to remind us of all the abundance out there in the universe, here's a passage from Paradise Lost, which is about abundance in nature.

# in all thir vast survey
# Useless besides, reasoning I oft admire,
# How Nature wise and frugal could commit
# Such disproportions, with superfluous hand
# So many nobler Bodies to create,
# Greater so manifold to this one use,
# For aught appeers, and on thir Orbs impose
# Such restless revolution day by day
# Repeated, while the sedentarie Earth,
# That better might with farr less compass move,
# Serv'd by more noble then her self, attaines
# Her end without least motion, and receaves,
# As Tribute such a sumless journey brought
# Of incorporeal speed, her warmth and light;
# Speed, to describe whose swiftness Number failes.

Love when authors contemplate frugality.

How are you dealing with temptation and abundance? Are you experiencing frugal fatigue?


Duchesse said...

Frugal, those Audrey jeans are so smart, for the body type you seem to be (extrapolating from your discreet hints).

I went into some kind of fugue state about three months ago where I realized that without getting more this winter, I could actually enjoy the extensive wardrobe I have, except for replacing the very basics like tights. This will pass. Probably next week when my Prisienne GF visiting months wants to go coat shopping.

Funny about Money said...

I'm thinking I need some clothes. But then I think...why? Where do I go that I can't show up in Costco jeans? Precious few places. And I'd like that red Ellington purse advertised at Footprints just now...but why? I have a perfectly fine purse.

Guess it's no frugal fatigue: it's a frugal coma!

Over the Cubicle Wall said...

Interesting. I am not having any urges to buy any more shoes, but footwear is one of the items I don't skimp on as far as quality. I am more than willing to pay for good shoes.

As to the rest, I have nonfrugal urges to buy big ticket items, especially land, but luckilly it is hard to impulse purchase real estate :)

Frugal Scholar said...

@Duchesse-The jeans are nice, but the 8s are small and the 10s are big. I'm trying to make the 10s work b/c they are comfy and look good. Love the name Audrey too--obviously i am a sucker for advertising sometimes.

@Funny--You JUST bought an expensive purse. Do not do it!!!!!!! My daughter would tell you to get two pairs of slim pants and two slim tunics. That's what she tells me anyway.

@Cubicle-I used to feel sorry for men because their attire was so boring. Now I'm jealous.

Funny about Money said...

Heeee! Yes, that purse was the SINGLE WORST BUY OF THE DECADE!!!! Never agree to go to a luncheon with your boss feting your 15 years on the job a few days after she has announced you're being canned, unless the chow line is a LONG way from any comforting retail shops.

The Ellington thing is only sixty bucks, pocket change compared to my last extravagance.

The Extravagance turns out to be one of those endlessly frustrating bottomless pits. Whatever you put in there sinks into a black hole. It has several pockets, but they also are deep and suck items to the bottom, and because I never can remember which one I stuck what into, so I have to dig through all the pockets AND the main pit to find what I need.

Shelley said...

I have more clothes and shoes can I will ever wear, my kitchen cupboards are full food, I have books to read, the internet to surf, plenty of hobbies to entertain. The only frugality that makes me tired is when the cold dark nights draw in and I'm trying to save money by dressing warm and not using the heat. I can only do that so long. It's as much or more psychological, I think, but I do end up breaking down and turning on either the electrice heater in my sewing/computer room or the central heat, particularly in the evening when it's time to make dinner. Most of the rest of it is, as you say, marketing. If I want to be frugal, I have to be smarter than the marketers. Suggest you consider unsubscribing to all those offers.

Frugal Scholar said...

@Funny--Buy--at the Dollar Store--a couple of little zip bags in different colors. One for money; one for pad and paper, etc. I learned this from The Complete Idiot's Guide to Organizing your Life.

@Shelley--I did unsubscribe to most email notices. Some keep coming in. Good point. Hard to give up on some of them. I will do it!