Welcome to the 82nd festival of frugality.
WARNING : The characters in this program are fictional and do not represent real people (even though you may feel that this show is talking about YOU!).
Date : July 10th 2007 – Middle Class Dad was spending the afternoon with his son Broke Son, who had just emerged from a bankruptcy filing. Middle Class Dad was trying to talk some sense into Broke Son, hoping that he will change his ways.
Middle Class Dad : Son, you’ve been through a rough time. But never give up. Learn from your mistakes and pick up again.
Broke Son : Yeah Pops. It’s such a relief now that I have many of my debts wiped out. At least I can start on a clean slate again.
Middle Class Dad : Sometimes I blame myself for the mess you’ve got into. If only I’d thought you about money when you were much younger, you probably would not be here right now. Son, you have to change your ways. You can’t just spend money like there is no tomorrow.
Broke Son : I’m trying.
Middle Class Dad : Well, you’ve got to try a lot harder. Look at this car you are driving now. How much did it cost you. You bought it new? Should have got a second hand car! And look at all this gadgets you have here. What’s this?
Broke Son : It’s blue tooth dad! See, I can use my wireless phone hands free!
Middle Class Dad : Look Junior, you’ve got to see What Options Are the Worth the Money on Your New Car. Now, you need safety bags and all that, but do you really need this bluetooth thing? Why don’t you just do anyway with your car?
Broke Son : Well, how am I going to get around?
Middle Class Dad : Well, you could save money and the environment with the carpool facebook application.
Broke Son : What?
Middle Class Dad : Hey, even I know about facebook. Check it out. Look son, your finances are out of control. You have to find ways to save on everything. And I mean everything.
Broke Son : Like how? I’m really lost. I don’t even keep track of my expenses.
Middle Class Dad : Look son, there are many ways to cut down on your living expenses. For example, you can save on prescription medicine. Also, Don’t eat out -cook at home instead. You should also find ways to Reduce Air Conditioning Costs.
Your mom once taught me 17 ways to turn trash into toddlers’ toys!
Broke Son : So I was playing with trash?
Middle Class Dad : Ha ha ! Yeah, you can say so. And all the pictures that we took, you Mom sure knew how about making memories and saving money. Look Son, you have got to set up a budget. And I can give you 10 reasons why I love to budget. Your Mom would also try to get free banking, and avoid paying all those fees!
The most important things is that you need to learn to how to reduce the cost of running a house. But not just your house, but everything as well. That was how I managed to have a very successful business. I watched my cost all the time. Let me ask you another question. Where do you get your tires?
Broke Son : Uh! At the dealership.
Middle Class Dad : What! You are paying too much. You should get them at tires from Costco and I’ll give you some tips for prolonging your tires life. I will also show you six steps to ing a new car.
Broke Son : Hey dad. Let’s stop for a while. I’m starving. Let’s get a McDonald’s or something.
Broke Son parks his car by the roadside and they got out for a walk and to get some McDonald’s.
Broke Son : Dad, I’m thirsty. I’m going to get a drink at this vending machine. You want anything?
Broke Son : Junior. Don’t your drinks from a vending machine. Did you know vending machines can cost 580% more?. Let’s get our drinks at McDonald’s instead.
5 minutes later at McDonald’s.
McDonald’s waiter : What can I get you sir?
Broke Son : A quarter pounder meal.
McDonald’s waiter : A large drink sir?
Broke Son : Yes.
McDonald’s waiter : Would you like an apple pie to go along?
Broke Son : Yeah, sure.
McDonald’s waiter : Sir, we are offering a special deal. For just $1, you will get 2 apple pies!
Broke Son : Well, how much will one cost?
McDonald’s waiter : 95 cents
Broke Son : Well, I’ll definitely take two apple pies then. Hey dad, what are you having?
10 minutes later at the table.
Middle Class Dad : (laughing)..Son, you just got conned into making McDonald’s richer? Let me share some lessons with you. First, they upsold you. They asked you if you want a large drink. You said yes. Then they crossed sell an apple pie to you. Then they asked you if you want a 2 for 1 deal. And you said yes. Do you know how much extra you spent versus just getting a regular meal with a regular size drink? See junior. That is how you end up spending more money than you should!
Broke Son : Wow, I didn’t understand how business came at you that way.
Middle Class Dad : Look son, when we get back home, I’m going to teach you how to save money on services by spying on business owners. I also saw you using a GAP credit card! Let me tell you son, you should beware of store branded credit cards, and don’t use a Walmart Debit Card.
Broke Son’s cellphone rings.
Broke Son : Hi Mom. You want to speak to Dad? OK, he’s here…
Five minutes later….
Middle Class Dad : So I see you have a fancy phone. Is this the new Apple Phone?
Broke Son : Yeah. Cool isn’t it?
Middle Class Dad : How much does it cost? I bet it is the most expensive cell phone today. Junior, that is why you keep having trouble with your money. You were in debt and you still want to get the latest phone!!
Broke Son : But Dad, I can show you 5 money saving reasons to an Apple iPhone.
Middle Class Dad : But you simply have no spending discipline. I see you have a packet of cigarettes in your pocket. You said you want to quit and you haven’t, have you?
Broke Son : You know how difficult it is Dad. I’m been under great stress lately.
Middle Class Dad : But son, do you know the price of your vice and the financial benefits of quitting?. How many packs do you smoke a day? How much does a pack cost? You work out the math!
Broke Son : Alright Dad, are we ready to go?
Middle Class Dad : I am. But it looks like you have not finished?
Broke Son : I’m full, I can’t finish the apple pies.
Middle Class Dad : Ordering too much and wasting food again? Wasting food is like personal finance garbage. Do you know how much money you are throwing by wasting food?
Ten minutes later after their meal, Middle Class Dad and Broke Son took a walk to their car. They saw some vendors selling fake designer goods.
Broke Son : Hey look Dad, fake designer goods. My wallet’s broken, I need to get a new one. You’ve been telling me to be frugal and watch how I spend my money. Think this is a great way to save some money and also have a good looking wallet.
Middle Class Dad : But son, these a fakes and illegal. I can tell Who s fake goods and how to spot one. Look, being frugal does not mean you should fake goods. it just means you have to take more time looking for bargains. Look, you could use a new suit. You look terrible in this suit. In fact, you can’t afford not to be picky when it comes to working clothes. First impression is so important. But Timing is everything what a good deal is.
Broke Son : Alright Dad. Enough about me. What’s going on with you?
Middle Class Dad : Well, I’m thinking whether I should I pay off my mortgage early?. Mom and I may be thinking of moving to a cheaper place to retire. It’s very expensive in San Francisco. But son, don’t worry about me. Your Mom and I have enough to retire. You just came out of bankruptcy. I don’t have to tell you Why You Should Start Saving Money Today?. You don’t have to make your life miserable even though you have to watch your spending. When Frugality is Fun, you’ll actually look forward to bargain hunting.