February 23, 2005

And Speaking of Open Letters

I have a little response to this article from MSNBC which outlines how people spend outrageous money on brand-name items. Read the article first (it's short), then read the follow-up article on 10 little luxuries worth every penny. It's also short. Once you're done with that, click on the extended entry below.

This article serious pissed me off and I'll tell you why. I don't appreciate being lectured by a self-righteous, holier than thou, condescending, self-congratulatory author who puts down the luxuries other people choose yet promotes stupid bullshit wastes of money like DVRs. I don't even have cable--here's an idea, how about not watching tv at all!--our grandparents did just fine without tvs. In fact, who needs indoor plumbing? Think of all the water we'd save by just using an outhouse. It was good enough for Grandpa!

I'm not even going to start in on home delivery of everything, a manicurist, a maid, valet parking (for f*cks sake), and shipping luggage.

I can justify my Wustof knives (you'll pry them from my cold dead hands too), my All-Clad pots and pans that last forever and really do make cooking easier and less time-consuming, my Riedel glasses that really do make a difference in how the wine tastes based on the shape of the glass, and my "luxury" sheets because I'd rather not have to spend 10 hours a night tossing and turning because my cheap-ass sheets itch me and are fraying at the edges (not to mention never fit the mattress properly). But seriously, what's the advantage of valet parking? You don't save any time, because you have to wait for the valet to retrieve your car. You gain weight because you don't walk to your car to get it yourself. All you're doing is spending money.

I don't like the tone and I don't appreciate the lecture, miss High and Mighty. If drinking Two Buck Chuck out of your Ikea glasses and slathering your skin with artificial chemicals that destroy the environment (Vaseline lotion) makes you feel superior to me then go for it. But that's a conversation you should be having with your other Wal-Mart-jeans-wearing girlfriends, and you better throw in an extra trip to Wally World after you finish your Cosmopolitan and retrieve your valet-parked car because your ass is hanging out of that big rip in your week-old Wal-Mart jeans. Or, you know, just have them delivered.

The point of the article was not to convince people to spend less money or to spend within their means. It was to make the author and other people who feel that expensive sheets are a waste of money feel superior to those of us who don't splurge on Tivo but who do enjoy our Kiehls lotion. If she wanted to talk about how people are spending within their means, she should do an article on how much the average credit card debt is, not just picking, choosing, and making fun of the luxuries that some people prioritize while promoting her own priorities that most of the time make no sense.

I mean how does sitting around in my house waiting for my luggage to be delivered save me time? Either I spend my time standing in line, or I spend my time sitting around at home waiting in that 4 hour window for the delivery guy to show up. Oh well, at least I'll be sitting I guess. Although I will have to get up from the couch when the cleaning lady wants to vacuum it. And as for the tax pro, yes, you're right. I am too stupid to do my own taxes. What was lil ol' me thinking?!

PS: I do think that the author has a point here. I just don't like the way the point was delivered.

Posted by Shelby at February 23, 2005 02:24 PM

I must admit, I'm a SUCKER for high-end luxury items (much to the chagrin of my husband, Brad.)

I have 2 Coach purses, two Coach wallets, a Lexus, and treat myself to a spa manicure and pedicure at least once a month. I gravitate to the more expensive wines, and fork out $85 monthly for a housekeeper.

Very rarely do I buy "generic" products at the market (with the exception of generic drugs which are cheaper!)

I've always felt that because I grew up with the cheapest, tightest, miser of a mother who wouldn't part with a nickel if she didn't have to. Now I think I am entitled to TIDE detergent and Ann Taylor blouses and I'm not going to settle for less just because of how I was raised.

Luckily, I am a good shopper and usually find things on sale, or at an outlet mall.

Posted by: Katrina at February 23, 2005 08:03 PM
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