Steps I’ve Taken To Keep My Spending In Check

I might want to live like a baller but I don’t want to die like I just used a gas station air compressor to re-inflate my ball and it exploded. So I’ve taken the following steps to keep my spending in check, or, more accurately, in debit card:

1. I never pay more than a $5 cover for a band Pitchfork has not reviewed yet. The only exception is for networking purposes. (Most bars have free wi-fi these days.)

2. Used bookstores are good places to go even more broke. Thus I avoid casual literacy.

3. Apparently, you can trick Kroger in the self-check aisle by passing off organic fruits, vegetables, and assorted nuts as cheaper varieties, but I don’t eat like a pretentious rabbit and they caught me the time I tried to slip Oreos into the Kroger brand Oreo knockoff container.

4. Hiking trails are free but that $500 dollar DSLR camera I took hiking with me is now broken. I’ve got to get a grip on my shoes. Perhaps a pair of repurposed soccer cleats.

5. I actually treat my parents to my Netflix account. Might seem counterintuitive but, trust me, I need them to save their money for when I’ll really need it, like when I have to borrow a bunch to open my combination bicycle/hookah bar Winded Wheelies.

6. Buffets are trash and not worth it unless it’s Indian food. Then I allow myself to embrace my inner worldly raccoon.

7. Cigarettes are a lot cheaper when I find them sitting unattended on a coffee shop table. I took that near-pristine public library DVD copy of D.W. Griffith’s Intolerance while I was at it. They wouldn’t have been able to power through a three-hour silent film without a nicotine fix at intermission, anyway.

8. When drinking in public: I start with a microbrew, continue with cheap American domestics, and end with whatever my second coolest acquaintance is having. (Probably bourbon.)

9. I encourage my significant other to attend every potluck she’s been invited to. It’s her friends, family and/or coworkers, so it’s up to her to bring food and it’s up to me to eat it. I’m the plus 1 stomach, minus 2 overloaded paper plates, sorry about your sneakers, dude.

10. Dog park. I park my dog there when I have to run some errands. If he’s still there when I get back, and so far he has been, then I still have a dog. If Cliffardo ever vanishes, however, I’ll have just saved myself hundreds of dollars in dog food and earned a bunch of sympathy likes.

11. Pizza by the slice. I eat like [redacted comedian] from [redacted comedian’s eponymous TV show].

12. When my alternator gave out on the interstate and I had to use my mother’s AAA account to get a tow, the driver didn’t care that I wasn’t my mother so he just found it uncomfortable when I put on an extra large dress and a wig.

13. It costs less money to keep faking my birth certificate so it looks like I’m perpetually 25 than to pay for my own health insurance.

Note: Obviously, thirteen is an unlucky number but you should see my student loan debt. I can risk it. The government’s already garnishing my wages.