“Now how you going to talk about the way I spend my money
Everybody say it with me now: it’s my money” – Kanye Omari West
My pops is the most frugal man I know. It’s a thin line between frugal and cheap and he’s a damn tightrope expert. I never knew how much he made or how’d he pull off Christmas for all his kids but the man got it done. When he said “he was broke” we always sideeyed him and whatever new outfit or jewelry he was flaunting. Now don’t get me wrong we weren’t the Huxtables but off my Pops efforts, we stayed comfortable. As an adult, I live the same way, I’m not strug life and I’m not balling, I’m comfortable. I’ve come to master the ball on a budge; I don’t need Madden in August, I’ll cop it at Christmas time, I’m not really a big Jordan guy, I have dozens of casual kicks, when I shop online there’s almost always another tab open to look up coupon codes. When I do splurge it’s on holidays and relatively well planned, I mean, I kinda do that for a living after all. Looking over my budget, just about every unexpected expense comes from family and dating. Family is a given priority but when it comes to dating, you can’t exactly plan for it. It’s spontaneous, you can walk outside and meet someone who is going to cost you at least $120 next weekend. You get a new lady in your life you don’t go that extra week without that haircut, you was going to do laundry next week but you need something to wear Wednesday night, that gas in the tank for work was used going across town to get some ass. You never really know.
So the other day on Twitter, someone from Sigma Zeta Bodypillow Inc went on a rant about using Groupons on dates. Jigga what? You do know that 3 weeks ago I had no intentions of my paycheck going to feed you right? Your homegirl did your hair for free, you bought your outfit on clearance but somehow your perceived value is based on how much I am willing to spend. Cool. Like I said, there’s a thin line between frugal and cheap. I have three golden rules when it comes to using Groupon or the like on dates.
1. No Surprises: It is about presentation. Now, busting out a clipped out coupon that’s expired and you don’t even have enough to pay is one thing; using a Groupon have the reservation booked and the deal honored and added to the check and she has no idea is another. (Also ladies, if you ain’t paying stop touching the damn check, the cost of your meal is “paid for” that’s all you need to know, and don’t worry how much I tipped the waitress). If that’s that possible, then the next go to move is to just keep it 100 about the 50% you about to save on the evening. “I got this groupon for X it’s about to expire, do you wanna….” There’s no surprises and if she’s gonna be one of those people who brings up the fact that you wouldn’t ask her out if not for the coupon, she probably read 10 dating books and follows @AskCheyB on Twitter. Run. Fast.
2. Events > Meals: Somewhat of a theory of mine that no one notices how much activities cost as much as meals. Restaurants, you sit, order, eat and they literally tell you how much this experience cost monetarily. Doing activities, no one puts as much stock in. I’ve gone to free events and I’ve used deals and the experience was all the same.
3. First Impressions Matter: The first date is probably not the best time to be using coupons. I’ll avoid when I can but sometimes a deal is just too good to pass up so she will deal, Deal? (Triple entendre don’t eem ask me how).
It can all be so simple. But when it comes to dating, a lot of stock is put into perceived value, how much effort is he about to put in. Will he call and ask you out or just text? Is he going to pay or go Dutch? Knock on your door or text “I’m here”. Understandably you don’t know the person so actions speak louder than words. However I never looked at how much I spend as some sort of reference to how important someone is or isn’t. I’m a traditionalist, I’m paying even if I don’t like you, whether the bill is $80 or $14 the fact I spent time with you is the true indication. This notion is if you cant break bread don’t date but what if he knew he wanted to get to know you before he knew what his check was looking like. Money values goods and services not feelings. My father sometimes spent more on me than my siblings or vice versa there wasn’t any favoritism. He did what he could every time and we never thought how much it cost but the fact that he did, well that was priceless.