Tuesday, April 17, 2007

A Clotheshorse Calls It Quits

I'm pleased to announce that my federal tax return has been accepted. What I'm not so pleased about is that this year I owed money. For like the first time ever. Not very much money, but still. And it's not because I made more money either; it's because I fucked up my exemptions.

As you might expect, I've been bitching about this quite a bit. The other night, just as I was about to submit my tax return, my dad said to me, "You know, you could reduce your tax owed to zero if you contributed to an IRA," which sounded fabulous to me even though I don't know shit about IRAs. "Uh, okay," I responded, "how does that work?" I'm not sure why I asked the question; I totally tuned out the answer and waited while my dad cruched some numbers. "That's cool," I thought to myself, "I'll just put the $246 I owe in an IRA and that will be that. Even steven." But alas. "If you put $1500 in an IRA, your tax owed would be zero," my dad finally announced.

$1500?!

I laughed. Then I gave my dad my best are-you-fucking-kidding-me face. "You don't have $1500?" he scolded. "Um, no. I absolutely do not have $1500." "Don't you have a savings account?" he asked. "Of course I have a savings account," I answered indignantly. "Well, how much do you have in it?" my dad pressed. "At the moment? 67 cents," I said, "but I have a LOT of cute outfits."

And I do. I like having cute outfits. I like it so much that instead of saving money I hang it in my closet in the form of gauzy t-shirts and olive drab chinos and drapey skirts. Which is stupid for approximately 8012 reasons. For starters, I don't NEED any more clothes. I am currently in possession of enough cute outfits to last me years. Also, I'm 31, I could probably use a savings account. Not to mention the fact that some people can't afford dinner yet I find it necessary to own FIVE pairs of nearly identical pants.

I don't like this about myself. I don't like constantly wanting stuff I don't need. I don't like caring about something as silly as t-shirts. I don't like that I'm spending more money than I should be, and I certainly don't like the business practices of many of the companies I shop with.

So.

I will not buy new clothes for the next six months. Starting now. Sure I could say a year, but let's not kid ourselves here. Also, there's a swimsuit exception: I'm allowed to buy a new swimsuit this summer. Maybe two. But that's it. No new clothes.

There is, however, nothing in the rules that would prevent other people from buying me new clothes. Just sayin'.

16 comments:

Anon. Blogger said...

Not to be a kill joy or anything, but are shoes included or excuded from this?

:-)

Valerie said...

Good luck with this resolution. You just know the next time you go to a clothing store they will be having some fabulous sale and/or you will see the t-shirt/sweater/pants/shoes of your dreams.

Seriously.

Good luck.

Coaster Punchman said...

Maybe you should just hand your paycheck over to your dad and have him dole out an allowance to you. Maybe he'd do it free of charge.

Oh, and you and your fellow lovebird are tagged.

lulu said...

Dude, even I have a IRA, and I am like the worst money manager ever.

Good luck with the whole shopping thing. Although, you're just not buying clothes, that leaves housewares wide open.

Megan said...

AB - I guess technically shoes should be exluded. Which is fine. I can't even remember the last time I bought new shoes.

Valerie - I think the only way is to not go in clothing stores. Or look them up online. Or open their nice glossy catalogs. . .

CP - Oh, I'm sure he'd be happy to do that. Blech. And tagged? I still haven't gotten around to Dale's tag from weeks ago!

Lulu - Housewares tend not to be a problem for me. Unless I move. Crap.

Coaster Punchman said...

Ha! I have a friend who does the $ management (e.g. takes their pay, pays their bills, puts $ away and gives them an allowance) for some $ challenged friends, and they pay him $200 a month for the privilege! So your dad's deal would be a bargain - plus you could trust him. Of course, you'd have to beg like a schoolgirl every time you wanted a new pair of shoes. Good times.

Tenacious S said...

Personally, I am purging my wardrobe at a yard sale very soon. I have a lot of stuff I do not wear and have had forever and need to get rid of. Sadly, I have not many cute outfits, just a lot of old clothes that are out of style and have seen better days.

RandyLuvsPaiste said...

Give yourself a break!

You have a boyfriend to look cute for.

(I mean that in the least sexist way possible.)

Grant Miller said...

I think your readers prefer you having a giant closet rather than a savings account. Cool clothes make for more interesting reading.

Elizabeth said...

It's worth it to save up for one IRA and then go back to buying clothes.

Dale said...

I would never recommend funding the IRA. I'll hold your money for $200 and then give it back if you pick a tag, any tag, well not a clothing tag.

Good disclaimer by the way.

vikkitikkitavi said...

I hate to say it, but you're doing the right thing. Better to not wait until your my age to wise up and start saving.

That's my advice. Oh, and always get a prenup. That's my other advice.

Frank Sirmarco said...

In addition to Viki's advice, I add this: never play cards against a guy named after a city.

Also, you have 3 more cents in your savings account than I have in mine. I envy you.

Amy said...

I have a lot of clothes that I'm going to fit into again someday, but very few that fit me now.

And, of course, I'm not going to buy anymore until I lose some weight or just need to because the ones that do fit wear out (which has happened).

Good luck, Megan!

Big Orange said...

you've inspired a blogcake in me. With pictures. it'll also be embarassing, so I can also say that Chris helped inspire this post as well.

Patrick said...

Oh man. It is so hard not to buy clothes. In my room at Colby I have a full closet, four full dresser drawers and I still had to go out and buy plastic bins and drawers for more storage!!! And I still buy more...eep!
Btw, if you want to take a tour of my room Megan you can check out pictures of it on my Colby blog. And the little wooden sign I refer to is the one that you and Eileen gave me. The "Accept" one.