I was watching a young woman juggle six pins on the street when she paused her act to tell us she was a UCLA student trying to make ends meet. It occurred to me that everyone, everyone, was doing something extra to survive.
Here was this talented girl hustling for a few extra bucks. She wasn’t a polished entertainer – too self conscious and meek – but her day’s haul would pay for next semester’s books. If she bought used.
I started to think of the things I have done to save (read: fight the fear I won’t have enough money).
In June I babysat. In July I went on a spending moratorium. This month I am planning to cover my bicycle seat in duct tape so I don’t have to buy a new one.
No one will say this, but I know what they are thinking.
“Really? You’re not even going to spend $35 on a new seat?”
“No. Why should I when can I do it myself with materials I already own?”
Call me frugal, self-reliant, or financially hyper-efficient. Or a cheapskate hoarding her dollars while the economy shrivels.
But I would rather annoint my beater bike with a homemade silver seat than lose $35 for one that matches everyone else’s.
What are you doing to stay ahead? Leave a comment or share a photo.