Financially, things have not been going well for me since July 17, 2014, when I was laid off by the newspaper where I worked for eighteen months. That’s 10 months without full-time work, folks. Recently my unemployment ran out. In January my father died. I’ve had two sprained ankles for I don’t know how long. It’s kind of been a mess.
At that point I wanted to bang my forehead against the mirrored wall and ask “does everything cost some ridiculous amount of money these days?” Glasses should cost no more than $150. My health insurance program should give me at least some kind of discount on my eye exam and my new frames.
EVEN WOMEN IN THEIR FIFTIES attending a lesbian feminist movie based on a Patricia Highsmith novel are not allowed to wear shiny, fancy, ever-so-slightly more sensible shoes.
Whenever I visit my parents for an extended period time in their suburban neighborhood, we always decide to buy groceries for my stay, and my dad goes through the weekly grocery store circulars to determines which store is offering the best deals.
It started, like so many weddings do, with a white dress. Not the wedding dress, which would come later, but a little cotton sundress I found on a rainy San Francisco day. I was waiting for my fiancé to arrive from his nonprofit job so we could walk together to Williams Sonoma and start to register for kitchen utensils. I ducked into a high-end store to get out of the rain.
Several months ago an editor at a fancy magazine with a name that rhymes with “honey” contacted me about writing an essay. The essay was supposed to be about a something that I bought, and that I love. It was (as past columns proved) an argument for occasional extravagance, or at the very least acts of good and consciousness capitalism. The pay for the column was quite good, and the prompt seemed fine, so I set to work thinking about just what it was I loved the most out of all the things I owned. I looked around and saw my rocking chair.
I’m spending a small fortune on my personal appearance.
ELLE recommends a $226 caftan-inspired dress from Steven Alan. There are cheaper caftans, though, that don’t look like the clothing equivalent of porridge.
Once I got a black, white, and yellow Diane von Furstenberg wrap dress at the swap.
Uninterested in narrative? More of a #STEM major? Get a diamond grown in a lab!
People who smoke — more precisely, those who despite government educational efforts, still smoke — are, on average, less able to afford $12 or $14 a pack.
I picked up the gray sweatshirt at a J. Crew store last spring without really thinking about it. It was on discount for $55, and I had chosen it precisely because it was an unremarkable article of clothing—something you throw on when it’s slightly chilly out and you need to run to the grocery store to pick up a quart of milk.
How do you know when to stop spending? What prevents you from buying everything you want as soon as you see it?
Fran Lebowitz is right about many things. For instance, real estate should be cheaper and clothes probably should cost more, because they should not be made cheaply in sweatshops. And dry cleaning is both a mystery and a pain.
When Target, the popular American discount retailer, arrived in Canada, it was doomed from the start.
I kind of stole someone else’s jacket, and I’m not giving it back.