The Economy Is About To Improve

Feb 01

BlackBootsYes, you heard that right: the economy is about to improve.

How do I know ? Because I just bought a ridiculously expensive pair of boots on line.

They are black. I have six pairs of black boots already (although not the six pictured here). I ordered them anyway.

Why? Not because I like to shop. I don’t.

It’s because it’s that time of year when those summaries from MasterCard and American Express came in and I get to review my finances and decide that I must cut back. Naturally, the minute I do that, I get this tremendous urge to buy something.

Ever since I worked on my b-b-b-budget for 2011, I have ordered 4 tee shirts on line (the shipping was free), a hamper for the bathroom (well, the other one did die), a bunch of books from Amazon (a girl’s gotta read, doesn’t she?), and an expensive spring raincoat at Bloomingdales. (It was on sale!! I had a coupon for 20% off! It will last forever!) I also ordered 3 pairs of Harrison Ford Jeans.

HarrisonFordSeatedWhat, you may ask, are Harrison Ford jeans? They are the jeans that Harrison Ford wore in the movie Extraordinary Measures and were featured in an article last year in The New York Times. The producers wanted the star to look young and with-it, so they dressed him in jeans and a blue sports jacket. I suspect the jeans were more impressive than the movie, but what the hell.

I read the piece expecting yet another brand of $500 jeans —the kind my husband would grow a few more grey hairs just thinking about — but no, the jeans in question are from Wrangler. Wrangler! The Original Cowboy Cut, no less. And they cost $44.30, unless they’re on sale for $33.97. Holy Cowpie!

So I ordered them and . . .

. . . They fit!.

So I got him 3 more pairs. Hey, it was buy-two-get-one-free-day around the old corral. An offer a cowgirl couldn’t refuse.

The fact that my husband will never wear out even the first pair (he now has four) and that I had to store two of them under the bed means one thing and one thing only: after a long cold winter (and it’s only February!) I feel like spending money. Ya got a problem with that, pardner?

But wait, those jeans were a bargain, were they not? The boots and raincoat are “investments.” The books are for my cultural enrichment. And a few tee shirts won’t break the bank.

Nonsense. These are all juicy rationalizations. And in the immortal words of Jeff Goldblum in The Big Chill,, we all need at least one of those a day. Of course, I’m way over budget on that one.

The thing is, it’s not just me. When you focus on your finances (the real F word to some of us), you end up spending more money. You’re rebelling. Some would say revolting. But that’s another story.

It’s like when you go on a diet and immediately have deep undeniable desires for Entenmann’s chocolate cake or Stouffer mac’ n cheese. It’s a Law of Nature.

My advice: don’t go on a diet — and don’t do a budget.

As for me, there is hope. Many of the things (especially footwear) that I order on line don’t work out, and I end up returning them, so all I’m out is the shipping fee, which won’t make a dent in the budget or lack of same.

Maybe the boots won’t fit and that will save me from myself.

Meanwhile, you heard it here first: the economy is about to improve. And to help it along, the least you can do is order a pair of Harrison Ford jeans.

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