Monday, June 30, 2008

I'm a Slave to the Sale

I have this problem. I tend to obsess about stupid things. I buy most of the kids’ clothing at The Children’s Place because they have sales that kick some serious pa-tooty. At the end of the winter, I bought 3-in-1 coats for the kids. They cost eight dollars. The best part is- if they don’t fit when the little fluffy white stuff starts falling from the sky, I just find the receipts and take them back, as long as they still have the tags attached. You can’t beat that with a big ugly stick made out of a California Redwood.

So, what, you may ask, is the problem here? The problem is that I bought shorts and flip-flops that were on sale for the little guy today. I’m so completely enamored of the store’s clearance prices that purchasing something that is only on sale makes me insane. I am absolutely convinced that within the next two weeks, the items I just purchased will be marked down to a ridiculously low price, and that makes my head reel. My brain is fighting amongst itself: “you should have waited for the better sale” right hook to the jaw “if you wait they won’t have his size” karate kick to the chest. (It would seem that I don’t have a little angel on one shoulder and a devil on the other- I have a boxing champion and a black belt in karate.)

This scenario rather debilitates me because I feel as though I cannot exercise my own free will and purchase anything from the store save for those few times during the year when a bright-red clearance sign heralds the good news. Unfortunately, my son registered about a seven on the my-kid-needs-shorts-real-bad scale; that fact, coupled with the possession of a coupon, is what led me to my erratic behavior.

I sometimes think that coupons are a common-sense killer. Instead of waiting just a bit longer for that sale that may, or may not be, around the corner, a person clutches the coupon that promises a discount and watches the days tick down until the date it absolutely must be redeemed or it will expire, at which point the person must use it or lament its loss. Whoever thought up the idea to actually put the power of the make-your-own-sale mentality into the actual hand of the consumer was a genius. It’s taunting, tempting, and titillating.

I realize that my irrational panic at missing a good sale is absurd. I once heard bargain hunting referred to as the female equivalent of “the thrill of the hunt”, and I believe that I have a bad case of bargain-hunting-induced-adrenalin-rush addiction. I do find it quite thrilling when I can buy my kiddos five well-made t-shirts for ten bucks.

Still, I have a problem. Instead of seeking the help of a qualified therapist I decided to confess my consumerism sins to the world, and hope that the release of sharing such asinine conduct will help me to overcome this deficiency in my character and enable me to become a better person. A person who can look a bright-red “extra 50% off already reduced prices” sign in the eye and say… well, I don’t know what I’d say. I may need another blogging session. I’m not cured yet.

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