I've often thought it would be nice if Yelp aggregated professional reviews in a separate section. Obviously not trying to numerically tally them in any way, or even collating them with the user reviews. This is definitely either a bad idea or it's technically impossible, otherwise it would already exist.
@Jenn@twitter I wonder if we could create some kind of "Deal-a-Meal"-type drink rationing system - move the color-coded cards from one side of your wallet to the other as you go through the month's budgeted beverages. Plus: craft project! @redheaded&crazy I strongly agree about the fiscal stupidity of ordering a glass of wine instead of a bottle. Where I am falling on this is, I think, if one isn't prepared to buy a bottle of wine at a place, then ordering a glass of wine is not somehow the smart/frugal thing to do - but then I have this problem (noted by Leon Tchtchke) that I don't want to go to the wine-appropriate place at all. I'm still a little stuck on this feeling of obligation to order booze at certain places, where I'd rather just not go there at all than try to go there and not drink. I'm clearly being irrational, yet I can't seem to shake it . . .
Husb and I got into a pretty serious fight the other night over dinner - it had been a busy several days, we were too tired and addled to cook, so we ended up going to the moderately priced Italian restaurant on our way home. I ordered a glass of wine and he freaks. "Why can't you skip the wine? Are you trying to send us into the poor house? Also if you can't say No, then maybe you're an alcoholic." My response was, "When I'm at the nice, moderately priced Italian restaurant sitting at the bar, I feel totally weird and also guilty if I don't get one glass of wine - so why did we even come here if you were going to get testy about one glass of wine?! I don't need wine all the time, I just need wine when I'm sitting in this place eating this food! If I need to be a cheapskate, then I don't want it to be at the expense of the servers here who live on tips. Plus, I tried to suggest we go to the diner, the Whole Foods, even the mall food court, and you picked this place, and now you're mad at me about spending money on wine?!" His firm opinion is that it's fine to go to the nice, moderately priced Italian restaurant and not get a glass of wine or even a salad, and that it would even be fine to go to the neighborhood pub and drink root beer. I think, if you're with a group of four or six people, that would be fine, but just the two of us going and occupying space and not spending money is not welcome by these establishments and their hardworking staffs. I actually am totally on-board with quitting the booze altogether because it's (in my view) actually not worth the expense relative to the net enjoyment (and agony). But the husb says quitting is self-ostracism and moderation is good enough. But I can't figure out a moderation strategy - I can imagine total quitting strategies (go to different places, do different activities, etc.), but not how to drink less. Have folks had successful experiences with either strategy? What worked? When you don't feel like sitting in front of the TV on a weeknight, what do you do instead of going to the pub?
I've truly never understood how gift cards are better than cash. They are not less "tacky," just far less useful. And although a grocery store gift card will not likely go to waste, it's also kinda condescending? Like, "I want to give you some money, but I don't want you to spend it on drugs." Weird. Anyhow, if you are ever thinking about giving a gift card, won't you please just give cash?