My Newfound Love of Coupons

23 May

valpak-envelope-full

This may come as a surprise to many of you, but writers in their mid 20s without full-time gigs aren’t exactly rolling in the cash. Shocking, I know.

Over the years I’ve developed a few workarounds. Only buying clothes on sale. Learning how to cook. Not making it rain at clubs. When feeling like treating yourself to a takeout for dinner, ordering it in the early afternoon so that you can get a lunch special.

And using coupons. Lots of coupons. It’s come to the point where I find myself feeling excitement when I open my mailbox and find that envelope of coupons lying in it. It’s called a Valpak. I get it once a month. The first thing I do every time is go through them and separate the ones I’m interested in. The others are put in the trash.

On the one hand, I want to say I’m not proud of this. That’s probably the part of me always conscious about playing into some of the stereotypes associated with my People. And also, well, no one wants to be that person.

On the other hand, frugal and cheap are two different things, and I refuse to apologize for being the former. Right now I’m sitting in apartment that, just hours ago, was cleaned by a cleaning service girl for $29. The place has never looked better. Earlier in the week I dropped off a suit at a dry cleaning place a few blocks away. Got 30% off. Last week I ordered groceries from Fresh Direct and got $25 off.

Do I sound like my grandma? Sure. But we all make choices in life and one that I’ve made is to pursue this writing thing. That means making sacrifices in other areas, one of them being salary. The way I look at it: you can either complain about what you can’t do, or find ways to do the things you want to do. Today, I’m thinking sushi for lunch. The 20% off pinned to my fridge has got me in the mood.

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