Friday, October 09, 2009

Thrifty or Cheap - that is the subject

Greetings Readers

Frugal or C.B. (a.k.a. Cheap Bastard)?

I have blogged about this a few times in the past. Some things I own I want the most for my money. However, in other people’s view I may seem like a cheap bastard.

For example, I was on the Light Rail the other day. I saw a sight that I found sort of humorous at first, but then quickly my humor changed to sadness.

She was eating one of those “lunch size” Lays Potato Chips bags when I saw her tip the bag to her mouth and tap the end of the bag, as such as I do myself to get all the little crumbs in the bottom of the bag. After all who does not like Potato Chips.

Then, I saw her turn the chip’s bag inside out so that the inside silver lining was on the outside and she proceeded to lick the inside of the bag. It was not sloppy lick or a loving lick on a body, but just a lick to get every taste from the residue of chip’s and salt.

I smiled at first since I think I remember seeing that in a movie once, or a TV show. However, to see that in real life was wow. Yet, those few seconds of smiling turned to concerned.

Why did she do that? Was that her only meal that she could afford? Was she trying to get her money’s worth? Did she have a problem with Lay’s Potato Chips? I know from my own personal life that I have been know to eat almost an entire bag of Lay’s Potato Chips in one sitting. However, I have never, ever licked the inside of any Potato Chip Bag.

To me that would seem gross. However Readers, I will admit that we all have had our mouths somewhere that would be gross to some, but to others not gross. What may be gross to others is not gross at all to others. I know that sounds redundant, but there are differences, however minute, between those two statements I just made.

Anyway, the reason for bringing up this story was not to ask you Readers whether that was gross or not gross. The question I want to ask you Readers was she being frugal or a Cheap Bastard?

Frugal for getting her money’s worth? Or was she a cheap Bastard for not having a second bag of chips or having a bigger bag of chips to satisfy her hunger?

Questions for which I do not know the answer(s) Readers.

With that being said let me explain why I started out with that story.

I have currently switched over to my winter bike, Tracey, since the rain and one snowfall have now started in Colorado. My brakes on Tracey were shot at the end of Spring this year. Matter of fact, I was stopping with my foot since the brakes were useless. However, since Spring was over I was going to be riding three other bikes as opposed to Tracey since Spring and Summer was here.

I go into the local bike shop up/down the road – depending on your point of view and look for a replacement brakes pads on my bike. Lo’ and behold the store does not carry my type of brake pads I need. However, they can find a suitable replacement braking system for me. Of course, at a price. You guess it Readers; I thought to myself “Fuck that”

That evening I went home and took off both pads and then flipped and switched the pads so that they were on opposite sides of the brake system. After all, road brake pads erode at an angle due to the angle of the rims. With that being said the worn out part of the brake pads was at the bottom of the brake system and the non-worn out brake pads were at the top of the brake system.

I have done this in the past and this was nothing new to me. After all Readers, when one has over 10 bikes in his collection replacing every item on a bike becomes pricey. To me this sort of short-term brake resolution is acceptable – and it works for me. Readers, I do not take any responsibility nor endorse this type of short-term fix. It is dangerous and should you do this on your own you do so at your own risk. I do not assume responsibility for this type of action.

Depending on how hard I brake this short-term fix can last for a few month, or could only last a month, depending on how hard I squeeze the brakes to stop.

Now the question, or perhaps a comment – Am I cheap bastard for not buying a replacement braking system? Or am I being frugal for getting the most out of my money for a $ 10.00 dollar brake pads.

I mentioned a couple of reasons why I think I was being frugal – owning many bikes, getting my money’s worth. To me this is justifiable for reversing and flipping my brake pads for getting my money’s worth. Yet Readers, let me refresh your memory Readers, I did go into the bike store to buy replacement pads. Yet, when that was not possible I had to come to a resolution immediately.

I could have gone to another store, but the evening was late. I know Readers, I could list excuse and reason after reason, but in this particular scenario I knew of the immediate fix and I took upon myself to fix the issue of no brakes. Of course, I could go the store the next day, the next week, but since I “fixed” the problem there was no reason to go the store.

Perhaps the answer depends on your point of view.

Until the next time

Daryl Charley
The Fallen Athlete

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