Tuesday, May 20, 2014

The Can Opener Dilemma

Our can opener has recently decided it's only going to work when it suits its purposes, and it will stop and throw a moody tantrum for no reason halfway through a task. I can't decide if it's acting like a hormonal teenager or a temperamental two-year old.

Truth is, it's closer to being a teenager. I don't remember how long we've had that thing. It was with us in New Mexico--might have been purchased there. Or it might be the same can opener I've had since the beginning of college, which would make it older than my relationship with Spousal Unit. A decidedly weird thought.

One way or another, we could use a new one. But I'm at that phase right now where a tiny, necessary purchase like that feels like over-the-top spending. (Never mind that we just went out for a fancy dinner on Saturday; that's from a separate vault in my mind, which has been drained.)

I get like this over the weirdest stuff. I sometimes suddenly reach a point at which any spending at all is a terrible idea (usually due to a large recent purchase--hello, homeownership) and then decide that buying anything other than food qualifies as frivolous spending. Even the food falls in that category sometimes. My internal monologue goes something like this.

Okay, we need honey. Which one should I get? Last time I bought the fancier Roundy's stuff and it tasted a lot better. But it's $1 more than this other jar; that's a whole dollar we could be saving, or put toward the water bill so we don't wake up some morning and discover we have to use the neighbor's hose to shower. But it's still a $6 jar. I guess we don't really need honey. I already put cranberries on my oatmeal, so I can live without honey.

I don't always end up talking myself out of a small purchase (It's always  the small ones that give me grief. Okay, the big ones too.), but I do often talk myself down to the cheapest version of something, after carefully studying the labels and ensuring that what I buy is the best deal on the shelf. And the thing about that magical $1 I would save for something else? I don't put it in my supermonkey bank or anything, so it just meanders about the bank account until I lift my spending embargo and finally buy the honey.

This is why I haven't bought a new can opener yet. Also, the handles are so sturdy that I often forget the wheels on that particular bus may still go 'round, but they're not getting anywhere. It still works on occasion, though, and for now, that's what I'm banking on. I'll probably only buy a new one when, some night before dinner, it completely gives out and I have to run to the store as part of a search-and-rescue mission to free the black beans from their tin prison.

Edit, 12:23 pm: Wow, that was a stupid topic for a blog post. But still, it was writing. I refuse to apologize for writing.

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