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Medium Dawn Felagund of the Fountain

Well, Our Christmas Shopping Is Half-Finished....

The (Cyber) Bag of Weasels

bread and puppet




"About as much fun as a bag of weasels"...when I first saw this Irish adage, it made me think of the life of a writer: sometimes perilous, sometimes painful, certainly interesting. My paper journal has always been called "The Bag of Weasels." This is the Bag of Weasels' online home.

Well, Our Christmas Shopping Is Half-Finished....

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Yes, you read that correctly. Last night, Bobby and I officially began--and finished--half of our Christmas shopping.

Picture it: Dawn sitting at the desk, painting Meryth's cloak in a color called Goblin Green; Bobby sitting on the couch with his laptop surfing SCUBA sites. Now Bobby and I had made an agreement that Christmas this year is not going to be the exorbitant affair of years past. It has always been my philosophy that holiday monies are best spent doing things that will be memorable in years to come rather than buying junk that will be under the bed and forgotten by the New Year. Anyway, at last, I got Bobby to agree. Since we decided to pursue this whole underwater-as-a-hobby-and-career thing, we have been eyeing up a camera called the SeaLife camera, which is a top-of-the-line digital camera that functions both above- and underwater. We decided that rather than driving ourselves--and each other--nuts with piles of unneeded gifts this year, we would split the cost of the SeaLife camera, which we will both use and enjoy.

The SeaLife camera with all things included--including the strobe--costs (hold on to your seats, misers) $999. Yes, one of those "if I end it with a nine then no one will notice how dear it is." Harumph. You can buy the camera by itself for just over $500.

Returning to our happy picture of Dawn with green-painted lips (from licking my brushes all of the time; that detail in AMC does not come from nowhere) and Bobby surfing using the latest in Internet technology, Bobby suddenly blurts out, "Oh my god, I just found our SeaLife on sale on scuba.com--the whole package, strobe and all--for $500."

Silence falls.

"That's pretty cool," Dawn says, after verifying that the usual price is in fact about a grand, and goes back to painting Meryth's cloak--and her lips--a nice even Goblin Green.

More silence but one with a vivid imagination can hear the wheels turning in the House of Felagund.

"Soooo..." says Dawn.

(Now, just as background, Dawn is the Official Skinflint, Cheapo, Miser, and Tightwad of the House of Felagund. Bobby has to put her back in line all the time. Just the other night, at the movies, Dawn wanted a soda and realized that she had forgotten her coupon for a free one. "Oh, well," she said. "There's always next time." "Dawn!" Bobby shouted. "You can still get a soda!" "But it's four dollars for a medium....")

"Soooo..." says Dawn the Penurious again. Bobby gives her a careful look. "Are you going to get it?"

"I don't know," says Bobby, who has had enough ill-fated run-ins with his miserly wife to have learned to ask, "What do you think?"

"Well," says Dawn, "if we think of it logically, it seems foolish to wait three months and pay $400 more for something that we want to get anyway."

"True," Bobby agrees.

"We can put it on the credit card and pay it off when we set aside money for Christmas. And we can even keep it at one of the parents' houses so that we're not tempted to use it until Christmas. Then it will feel like we got it then anyway."

"True," Bobby agrees, and silence falls again. A few minutes later: "Soooo...should I order it?"

Now what do you think the outcome was?

(Though perhaps in honor of her penny-pinching forefathers, Dawn did advice to wait to add the $60 wide-angle lens until a later time.)
  • Dawn, you are indeed a woman after my own heart. (Although my preferred method of acquiring expensive things is to wait and ask for them as birthday or Hanukkah presents.) Yes, dear God, yes, get that camera at five hundred if someone is offering!

    And four dollars for a medium soda that's mostly ice anyway is utterly insane. Bobby knoweth not whereof he speaketh.
    • Well, then, it is pleasant to meet another miser! My father and grandfather are worse than me, so we joke that this is where I inherited it. (My sister is the same way; she is credited with turning Kirsty on to using coupons!) Growing up, we did not get anything name-brand from the grocery store unless it was on sale. I remember waiting five weeks for a bag of Doritos. And my grandfather--a millionaire and mostly blind--would nonetheless scan my grandmother's WalMart receipt with a magnifying glass to make sure that everything was in order.

      Movie-theater concessions are ridiculous. And at most of the big megaplexes around here, you can almost get a full dinner: chicken strips, buffalo wings, popcorn shrimp, et cetera. I see people rolling up with trays full of food and drinks and know that that must have been about thirty bucks per person. That will pay for appetizers, meals, drinks, and 20% tip for both Bobby and me at the Trolley Stop.

      I got the soda. *blushes* Though to be fair, it was a 32-ounce, and I'm accustomed to mediums being 20-ounce. If I'd known that, I could have gotten a small ($3.75....)
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  • Four dollars for a soda is insane... I get about 20 dollars' budget --converted into USD-- per week, for food (5 days, 15 meals) tuition (about 4 dollars for a tutor, who's a student from the university) plus any other unexpected things like notebook fees and whatnot, and still manage to have about 5 dollars left by the end of the week most times. But then, things tend to be cheaper here. I can get lunch for about 80 US cents and breakfast for about 5 cents.

    4 dollars for a soda. Yeesh.
    • Movie theater (or stadium) concessions are ridiculous. Though you would probably fall over at the prices in general around here. When I was in university three years ago, I could not get a lunch and a drink for less than five dollars anywhere on campus. (Unless I made "lunch" a bag of chips and a soda.) And being vegetarian, my food is usually at least a dollar cheaper than something with chicken or steak. But I live in one of the richest states in the US, and the prices reflect that. All the more reason to move somewhere remote and keep company with fishes. ;)
  • LoL, weren't we talking about this at our get together?:)

    at least you have the peace of mind that you got it cheaper than what it normally is. Like I was telling you yesterday, I almost got a cheaper digital camera until Brandon pointed out the one I have today which was more expensive(the route he goes), my Doc Martens cost the same as his though, lol, they're boots that are in the mens and women's section though.
    • Yes! Maybe we jinxed it in a favorable direction? :^D

      I'm surprised that your Docs were the same as Brandon's in price. I remember watching a program once that uncovered that--although women's clothes and products are usually the same as men's except in small ways (buttons on a different side, different packaging et al)--women's stuff is usually considerably more expensive, presumably because women shop based on aesthetics and men based more on bargains. (Though they've never met me, obviously! :^P)
  • Now what do you think the outcome was?

    I approve of sales. Yay!

    The real question though should be: "Now do you think I'm going to be able to wrap my precious in sparkly paper and put it in the back of the closet till Xmas?"

    I think you will.....but since I'm feeling tormented and abused by having to read slash by weekly installments, I'll let Morgoth have some fun I think you will....but you shouldn't. My parents are both photographers and feel a new camera requires a three-day trip to some exotic location to break it in and make sure everything works well, that there is no distortion in the lens, etc, etc, before the return/exchange clause runs out.

    I'm sure there is some truth to this besides the obvious fun factor. Anyway, congrats on the new camera......and if it does sneak out of the closet, remember to post the pics here.
    • The real question though should be: "Now do you think I'm going to be able to wrap my precious in sparkly paper and put it in the back of the closet till Xmas?"

      That's why I told Bobby that we really should entrust it to the keeping of one of the sets of parents because I know us: We'll be hiking somewhere, and one of us will say, "It would be nice to have the SeaLife," and it'll be out, and we'll then figure it's useless to put it back....

      We are going to take it out just long enough to make sure that everything's in order, of course. ;) And Bobby's on the lookout for cheap airfare to Miami so that we can try out the camera and our new SCUBA skills in Key Largo. :^P

      I think you will.....but since I'm feeling tormented and abused by having to read slash by weekly installments, I'll let Morgoth have some fun

      Ooooh...you are evol! Is this a hint that you would like me to send you the whole story, in all its unedited glory?

      Anyway, congrats on the new camera......and if it does sneak out of the closet, remember to post the pics here.

      Thanks! And no worries...our first really successful reef pictures will be the *squee* heard around the world. (We took some in Puerto Rico, but unfortunately--since our current digital camera doesn't go underwater--we had to use cheap disposable cameras and most of the pictures did not turn out.) We'll also be unveiling a community soon for all of our undersea and overland adventures, and they'll be posted there as well.
  • Okay, these days I'm scared to spend more than $5 at once, but... a...digital camera... that functions... underwater?!

    *drooooooool*

    :D
    • Yes, awesome, eh? That was pretty much my reaction too. I'm going to be very antsy, waiting for Christmas to try it out. We will probably taking a wee trip to the Florida Keys too, you know, just to make sure that the underwater bit works properly. :^P
  • Those take such nice pictures!!! I wish my mom had had one when she was trying to take underwater pictures in Hawaii.

    I'm the same way at movie theatres! I definitely don't feel bad about smuggling in candy! (Especially once when the theatre was in trouble, so took away student discounts. Needless to say, that theatre is no longer in business!)
    • Oh, I am the queen of theater smuggling. I have a huge purse since I frequently carry around books with me (*cough* The Silmarillion *coughcough*), and I have learned that it will fit three 20-ounce bottles of soda, i.e. Bobby, Potter, and Dawn. We used to stop at a WalMart next to the theater, spend a buck apiece for sodas from the vending machines outside, and save literally six dollars. When we would go to the movies at Arundel Mills mall, they have an awesome candy store...'nuff said. ;)

      Bobby and I are bad people and since our student IDs don't have dates, we've been using them since we graduated. Of course, we really are students again now, so I don't feel so bad! :^P
  • Personally, I think you let Bobby order the $500 camera. And I hope you painted your toenails green instead of blue to match your lips.
    • Hell yeah, I did! :^D My family smells a bargain like a shark smells blood.

      I actually think that I had green toenails once when I was thirteen. I decided to give the blue a break, but never again. A tasteful green that doesn't make my poor abused feet look nastier than they already do is hard to come by!
  • Congratulations on your Christmas present!
  • Yes, you read that correctly. Last night, Bobby and I officially began--and finished--half of our Christmas shopping.

    But it is still Summer! This is also where both our worlds are so apart. We don't do gifts with Christmas, we used to get gifts with Sinterklaas, but once I quit believing in him, that stopped too. And after the past years drama's caused by my brother, the Christmas spirit as in celebrating with family is killed too. Aaaanyhow :) Last year I got such an unexpected present from an author named Dawn Felagund and up to this day I still frequently read the story named 'The Gift'. Maybe because it reminds me that gifts don't necessarily are only given around Christmas...

    {{{hugs}}}
    • But it is still Summer!

      Hehe, yes! But the camera is going away until Christmas, where it will be unwrapped and enjoyed like any other gift. And $400 off was too much a deal to pass up....

      This is also where both our worlds are so apart. We don't do gifts with Christmas, we used to get gifts with Sinterklaas, but once I quit believing in him, that stopped too. And after the past years drama's caused by my brother, the Christmas spirit as in celebrating with family is killed too.

      I have trouble mustering much enthusiasm for Christmas these days too. I really enjoy the little traditions that Bobby and I have, but that's about it. The "gimme gimme gimme!" attitude and the idea that you have to spend hundreds of dollars on making someone happy and the nasty attitudes of people who have spent too much or don't think that they've gotten enough...I am happy this year to be sharing the cost of this camera with Bobby, getting a few piddly things here and there, and getting to enjoy the rest of the season. I know that my family situation was nowhere near as awful as yours last holiday, but they really put me off all the same, after years of preaching about how they'd never make us choose between families, then doing just that. This year, we are going to a Meyerhoff Symphony show and to New York City with both families; the rest of the time, I think Bobby and I will stay home.

      Oh, and my sister will be in town in early December! *squee* So we'll hang out with her too.

      Aaaanyhow :) Last year I got such an unexpected present from an author named Dawn Felagund and up to this day I still frequently read the story named 'The Gift'. Maybe because it reminds me that gifts don't necessarily are only given around Christmas...

      *squee more* :^D I am so happy to hear that that gift meant that much to you. And the sad thing is that I asked people on my flist for gift requests, and within minutes, had a dozen responses...and many either never read their stories or never even wrote a comment to say that they had, even after asking for one. It was kind of hurtful, truth be told. Then I write a "surprise" story for one person; amid twenty-odd requests, I am trying to convince myself that it is the wise thing to do. "But Rhapsy never made a request; she might not even like the story; blah blah blah," and then you end up being the most wonderful and grateful of all about it. So maybe there is a lesson for me in there somewhere. :)

      (Somewhere, Bobby is muttering, "Yeah, like you damned straight better not take open requests again this year!" :^D Poor guy; he had to put up with me for the duration of it....)

      {{{{{hugs back}}}}} and thank you again! :)
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