Monday, July 14, 2008

What's Your Spending Vice?

Last week Five Cent Nickle posed this question to the online community. I have to say that one got me thinking. At first I thought "I have no spending vices." For sure I know I have other vices but spending I've got under control now that I've kicked my book habit and use the library. Oh come on we all have vices. I'm not above them and neither are you.

But first what's a vice? The dictionary defines a vice as something immoral, but I think popular culture looks at it differently. A spending vice is something that you spend money on, even though you know you shouldn't. It's different from a real problem in that a vice probably won't run you into the ground and you can stop if you have to. So gambling and other addictions aren't included.

After some thought I did identify some current spending vices. But I though it might make for a more interesting experiment to ask people that I know what there vice is. I was surprised when some of the people that I asked shuttered at the my insinuation that they have a dirty little spending secret. Others were happy to oblige. Here's a sampling:

  • The teacher who spends $100 a month on extra incentives for students.

  • The frugal guy who can't resist funky shoes like Chuck Taylors, Vans or other fun kicks.

  • Mom's who can't pass up cute clothes for their little ones who have drawers full.

  • The wine buying couple.

  • The grandmother that can't stop buying handbags.

  • The girl with too many sunglasses.

  • Coffee. "Love is a latte in the morning..."

  • 1,000 Itunes songs and building.

  • A bargain crazed shopper who can't pass up sales on essentials and ends up with hoards.

  • Like midnight refrigerator raiders the late-night eBay shopper can't believe the junk she buys.

  • Eating out is weakness for many.

  • Snake oil beauty products grab dollars from those of us who are looking for a miracle.

  • The accidental antique collector who goes to the dentist and comes home with a table.

  • Coffee, again. "$100/month is waaaayyy too much to spend on coffee..."

  • Knitting yarn junkies.

  • The woman who loves sparkly things keeps buying gold jewelry.

  • Normally frugal people who go on spending sprees only when the cash flow is low. Not too crazy, but a bit reckless.

  • More coffee. Yep, we're caffeinated. "I have to buy 1-3 drinks most days..."
Now don't looked so shocked and awed by these confessions. You know you've got your spending secrets too. And don't wag your finger at these people and say "knock it off". Sure we're (I'm included in that list) wasting some cash, but money is for spending. Besides its the little vices like these that make us more interesting.

So come on fess up. What's your spending vice?

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