The list of things we no longer need to buy keeps growing. Here are a few such things:
- Cookbooks. You want a recipe for carrot-raisin salad, Google will give you 2,521. Take your pick. Except I still buy a few cookbooks. I've bought cookbooks for decades. My wife never looked at any of them. All she looked at was the original Betty Crocker cookbook I gave her when we got married since her mother had overlooked teaching her how to cook. That vintage cookbook is now worth a fortune. Except it is tattered and battered. So I bought her the next edition. I like to look at the pictures in cookbooks and study the recipes when I can't sleep. Except for I never tried cooking any of them. Now, I love to prowl the recipe sites on my little computer.
- Palm pilots. Remember when everyone had to have the stupid thing? My sons all had them and I thought I had to have one, so I shelled out $$$$$ for one and then used it to store about 20 names and phone numbers.
- Day planners. Some people who make 20 appointments a day while they are trying to get rich still use them but my expensive leather bound day planner was an expensive phone list and I quit paying $$$$ for the fancy annual updates. I'll be glad to donate mine to anyone who wants it. If I can find it.
- Newspapers. Except for doing the crossword puzzles. I hate doing puzzles on the computer.
- Books. Unless you love the feel of paper and the pictures on book covers so much that you want to store another 200 books or more per year, which, over 20 years comes to, let's see, 4000 books. Happy reading.
- Season football tickets. Unless you love getting fried in the hot sun, struggling through hordes of rude people crowding in and out and through the concourses, standing up just when the play of the game comes along and before you can react and stand up yourself, paying $5 or so for a cold "hot" dog, buying $3 water and $3.50 soda, and taking two hours to get out of the parking lot and on the freeway after the game.
- Tomato plants in the spring. As an agricultural economist, I can calculate marginal costs and marginal revenues (benefits). I even have a master's degree in agricultural economics. I paid, let's see, about 6 bucks for 5 tomato plants, $20 for new metal cages, $6 for a bag of steer pucky, $8 for a bottle of spray stuff that was supposed to make the tomatoes set on, $5 for some Miracle Gro which was supposed to grow miracles, and spent 20 minutes a day of my valuable time watering the stupid things during the heat of the summer. And what did I get for my efforts? Thus far, about 20 tomatoes, 15 of which are piddly little things. I can buy a whole box of tomatoes at the farmers' market for 15 bucks that are bigger and better than anything my poor, pathetic tomato plants can produce. Next year I plan to plant rocks and buy tomatoes at the farmers' markets. At least they know how to grow them.
- Ronco Rotisseries. Set it and forget it. Or, rather, set it in your storeroom and forget it. At one recent point in time, my sisters all had rotisseries including one who lied about having one because she didn't want to feel left out but she told a big fat lie and is still lying about it. Then one by one they all complained about taking an hour to clean up the stupid thing while they could buy nice fat rotisseried chickens at Costco for 5 bucks. For a five dollar chicken, two people can eat off of it for a couple of days, make more sandwiches, a couple of chicken enchiladas, and then boil (berl) the carcass for chicken noodle soup to keep you going for another week. All for 5 bucks and you don't have to curse the stupid rotisserie while trying to clean it up.
We have run out of space here on our list of stuff we no longer need to buy. We will continue this foray into home economics some time soon. Meanwhile, enjoy your rotisserie, your season football tickets, your new books, your newspapers, your day planner, and your cookbooks. When your storeroom gets too crowded to put more stuff in you never use any more, hire some neighbor kid to come in and haul it all out to their yard for a nice garage sale or call your local favorite charity to donate it to needy folks who are dying to set it and forget it. For nothing.