Day 27- It feels good to be used?

I ate the last of my graham crackers today. That was the last packaged snack-like item left in my pantry.

I also walked into United Colors of Benneton just to see how I felt. As I wandered through the $89 sweaters and $69 scarves, I felt like an outcast in my used rags I dare to call clothing. I also had a dirty little secret- I couldn’t buy anything! I felt almost ashamed of my inability to be Consumer. By the time I arrived at the back of the store, the $20 camis seemed cheap. “Wow, what a steal!” I thought to myself. Luckily, reality slapped me in the face and reminded me, “This is just what they want you to think!” and out the door I ran.

“They” (probably better defined as the circle of consumer demand and business output instead of an evil humanized entity) are very tricky. I almost bought it. Well, I probably would have never bought it but I almost believed it anyway- I would have stashed it away in my mental ‘Things to Buy When I Have Money’ list and then desired it for quite some time. Yet because I haven’t had the constant barrage of “Hot Item!” and “Buy More, Save More!” (?), I was able to distance myself.

Because of that distance, I do things like this:

These shoes could have seen their better days (those are my fingers sticking through the sole on the left), but I need old shoes for work anyway. I put two insoles that I already had in, took out the laces, sewed in some elastic to keep them on and voila! Not new but they will function (who needs stinking Toms, anyway?).

I also had two pairs of jeans that I never wore, so I cut them off to make shorts and now I wear them all the time! I’m going to use that left-over denim to make a camera case (for which I spent $4.85 on a zipper and sewing pins but I figured that’s worth it).

I also spent $1 to buy the newspaper Street Sense that goes to support the homeless population here in DC. Maybe not a necessity but a worthy cause.

Total spent so far: $406.19

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