This is not about losing weight though I am pretty lean these days. I’m referring to spending less if less is coming in.
I wrote an essay (Home Economics) concerning my latest attempt at balancing the budget. I’d probably have better success balancing a ball on my nose but we’ll try to be optimistic.
What I didn’t mention was my recent trip to see Max my accountant.
First of all, I hate pinching pennies. When I found myself at the health food store comparing walnut prices I knew I was in trouble. I spend a fortune on nuts for their omega-3s. I never realized it before till Max, who I stupidly asked to peruse my bills said, “ARE YOU NUTS SPENDING THIS MUCH MONEY ON NUTS?” (He really said that.)
I have always prided myself on what a healthy, sensational diet I have. According to Max, as he put it, hot dogs are cheaper.
“But I don’t eat meat Max,” I told him, “especially with secret fillers.”
“What are talking about? Hebrew National? You mean to tell me their dogs are packin secrets?”
“You know what they say Max, you never want to know how they make laws or sausages.”
“Who said anything about sausages?”
“Think shape then do the math.”
The conversation did get a little out of hand.
Max who lives on fast food has cholesterol problems and a belly you could play Babalu on so his food advice is none one should heed.
When I voiced this he said, “Alright, how bout this, just don’t buy them. Give them up. Throw in an extra banana in your yogurt and forget about those overpriced nuts. And do we have to buy expensive Greek yogurt? What’s wrong with Dannon?”
“It’s got junk in it (which is true) and Greek yogurt better for you (which it is).”
“If you want to save money you need to buy cheaper food.”
This depressed me to no end. This is how I see it. Life is too short to give up your walnuts. I mean it, there has to be another area where I can save a few bucks.
Then things got worse.
“You spend an awful lot under miscellaneous,” he said shaking his head. “Could you break that down for me a bit?”
“I could but I won’t.”
“And why is that Susannah?”
“For starters, a girl’s miscellaneous is very personal.”
Well it is. To be honest, I didn’t want him to find out about my housekeeper that still comes now and again. I was afraid it would put him over the edge since he already thinks my lifestyle is too lavish, which it isn’t. Is it my fault I don’t have the scrubbing gene?
Besides, I wouldn’t be saving any money if I got rid of her anyway. If I had to clean my own house from top to bottom along with buying a series of cleaning products, I’d have to throw in scotch to get me to do it, so you see, I’m actually saving money having her.
We all have our systems after all.
Then the topic of lunch came up.
“So Susannah, this bistro I know you go to.”
“The one you write about all the time. Are we still going there?
“Is this part of miscellaneous by any chance?”
Dammit, I knew he’d bust me for something. That’s what I get for writing about my social life.
“I know that restaurant. You may as well be going to the 21 Club.”
“But I don’t like it there. They make terrible pasta.”
That’s when he hit the ceiling. “You shouldn’t be going anywhere until your finances improve. You could eat for a month at what you spend there.”
Jesus, and to think I always thought I ate like a bird. He of course was referring to the wine bill which, I’ll admit, brings the bill up just a tad. Alright so it doubles.
When I think it was my big idea to ask him to look over things to see if he could suggest a tip or two.
That was the other thing, he went ballistic over my over tipping. I told him, “Max, when you frequent a place you have to be generous.”
“THEN GO TO A NEW PLACE WHERE THEY’LL NEVER SEE YOU AGAIN.”
Then he really got annoyed when I told him I had to go after thanking him profusely of course.
“Where are you going, we haven’t finished yet.”
“Um, a wake, I’m going to a wake.”
Alright I lied.
How could I tell him I was going to lunch?
He might have popped a vessel.