Monday, October 1, 2007

here comes the hot scrimper ...

on saturday chuck and i spent 45 minutes discussing the value of the plate of cafeteria food he had purchased at the damn-near-stealing price of $4.90: mashed potatoes and gravy, macaroni and cheese with tiny chunks of ham, and a plop of salisbury steak.

i sampled the mac and cheese and it tasted like a bear hug and sway to a fleetwood mac song in the rain. we considered the impossibility of hot food for under five dollars, how this plate of food -- if purchased in the whole foods deli -- would cost three times as much. how a person should really eat more cafeteria food. and how, like, if he wasn't going to lick that plate, did he mind if i took a few laps around the edges? then, when the topic came up again about two hours later, i stopped mid-rave to say:

"wait. we have been talking about the cost effectiveness of cafeteria food for a grand total of 45 minutes today."

he thought about it for a second and agreed that, this time, i wasn't even exaggerating.

this, and other evidence, suggests that i have segued into early onset frugality. i like when i go through surprising new phases. makes me think that maybe someday i'll be a neat-freak, exercise fanatic, tv abhoring, country music-trilling, cat-loving, oragami folding, eye-shadow-wearing, YMCA youth-mentoring, teetotaler with a keen eye for spelling errors.

we have begun watching season one of northern exposure on dvd. the first disc had just two episodes, so we travelled to each of the video stores where we are members-in-bad-standing [read: fine havers] looking for more episodes to fill in the gaps until more netflix arrive. unfortunately there must not be a call for early 1990s programming among the local population of elite dvd marathoners. so we eventually bought a season one-season two value pack last nite.

"hmmm ..." i said, surveying the back of the box as we walked to the cash register. "11 hours of episodes. ... lower than normal. but it comes out to approximately 4 dollars an hour of tv -- divided by two ... i'd pay 2 dollars an hour to watch 'northern exposure.' "

say, what? math and frugality in the same sentence? the only thing weirder would have been if i started it with the phrase "hail mary."

whatever. that price made it sound reasonable, if you can ignore that it made me sound like a penny pinching whack job. or, as chuck says, a scrimper -- which is not nearly as endearing as "crabass." thank god this "scrimping" is just a weird phase.

later, we were at niko's picking up gyros. i stood in the parking lot and noticed a penny in gravel. a few feet away, a dime. i picked them both up out of the wet dirt and buffed them on my jeans. i smiled and showed my loot to chuck through the window.

"what if i found 11 cents a day?" i asked him later. "11 cents a day ... "

my mind raced with possability.

i wonder if it would be cost-effective to get a metal detector?


first mate said...

aahh the northern exposure

I own all season's of the why-wasn't-i-watching-this-in-college-instead-of-my-so-called-life gem of a television program … so incase you are turned away from the video stores or netflix ...
Oh and I own My So Called Life too. I heart TV on DVD. Sorry you can't borrow season's 1 and 2 of Felicity though. I sold those to buy some dog food when I was having a poor week .. oh along with Roswell Season 1 [I'm a dork]

Miss Kate said...

I hate how the Northern Exposure DVDs only have two episodes. WHy can't they just fit in three? Ugh.

Whiskeymarie said...

I'm getting up early tomorrow to geet my oil changed.
It's cheaper if you get there by 9:00.
God I'm old. And cheap.

christina said...

fm: nice collection! i wonder if i'd like roswell. ... my collection looks like this:

dawsons creek: seasons 2-through-finale;
buffy: seasons 2, 6, and seven.
felicity: season 3
oc: season one
afterschool specials: in an afterschool special yellow bus

miss k: that was a horrifying fact. left me jonesin'

wm: shit. i have to get my oil changed.