Thursday, January 15, 2009

A difference in philosophy

I am a pretty frugal gal. I buy used rather than new, try to figure out how to reuse an item, follow a spending plan that allows me to save for immediate and long-term goals, and live a more sustainable life. Other than a weakness for buying items to stockpile and occasionally drooling over Apple hardware, I stay on the frugal and greener path I have chosen.

This means instead of buying a new television for the age of digital signals, I signed up for the $40 converter box coupon back in December 2007 and was one of the first people to receive the coupon in February 2008. My modest 19-inch television was purchased new at Best Buy in 2000 after my 13-inch TV (new in 1994) stopped working. I found it ironic that the larger TV weighed less than the smaller one.

Recently, one of my friends commented I needed a larger television as we were watching a widescreen DVD. I will admit, more screen real estate would be nice. However, most of my viewing is for broadcast shows and rarely for widescreen movies. What I have suits my viewing needs, and the set is small enough to fit in the corner of my living room on top of my free entertainment center. My plan is to replace my television with a used one when it decides it no longer wants to present pictures to me.

My friend understood my refusal to get a larger television, but his comment reflects a difference in our philosophies. What I have is adequate to serve my needs and I will wait until the item breaks before considering replacement versus his assertion that bigger is better. I am satisfied with what I have. This makes it easier to live a more frugal and sustainable life.

Have you recently come under peer pressure to update electronics? How did you handle it?


  1. My boyfriend is a huge tech geek, and while I like all the interesting gadgets out there I don't always feel that newer/bigger is better. I don't buy new things to add to my computer unless that piece is broken, and I don't buy a new LCD TV because it's on CRT is working just fine for me.

    I did however recently purchase and ASUS eeePC for myself with my Christmas bonus this year, but not because I wanted a laptop because everyone else had one. I was wanting something portable that I could have with me at all times to help me work on my finances (I'm just now trying to create a budget and really keep better track of my money), and use it for other things like following knitting patterns that are online instead of printing them out and wasting paper. Now I am also helping my father proofread his books, so I'm using it to make notes so I can email them to him (again, saving paper).

  2. @diyod

    I love my iBook G4, probably more than is healthy. However, I agree it is easy to keep track of things on a laptop. Just whip it open and update a spreadsheet or add to a list. And going paper free is not bad either.

    Best of luck on getting your finances in order. The peace of mind you gain from it (and the organization of your financial life) will pay dividends in so many ways!