I’m in a scrimpy mood!

If you don’t know what’s scrimpy, look it up in the dictionary here.

What go me in this mood? Oh, a lot of things such as this blog post by Lydia Teh and the recent announcement of the increase in electricity rates, not to mention the rise in petrol prices too! Everything seems to be getting more and more expensive nowadays it seems. And, unfortunately to a shopaholic like me, this is grave news indeeds. Dark days ahead for folks like me.

Especially considering the fact that I am a manic original DVD purchaser and book buyer. *whines*

                                                    I'm broke... :-(                                 

This month alone, I’ve spent RM300 on DVDs and another RM150 on books. And I have yet to see half of the DVDs I’ve bought and nine books are still on my “to read” box. Thankfully, I am not a music junkie or more $$ will go up in smoke! And fortunately for me – the movie buff that I am also – I managed to watch some of the latest movies for free courtesy of free press screenings that comes part and parcel with my job…which pays rather ok.

So, with the end of the month a mere few days away…it’s not going to be long before my mailbox becomes chockful with bills, bills and more bills. It’s safe to estimate that at least 1/4 of my earnings will go into paying up the Astro bill, mobile phone bill, Internet bill, water bill and of course, the electricity bill.

Fly Away MoneySo just what am I going to do to ensure the days ahead will not look so bleak? Quit my part-time course? Not an option as I dislike leaving things unfinished. I’m not a quitter despite whatever the circumstances. By hook or by crook, I will persevere and finish off my studies.

These are the solutions that I can think of right now, with a little of inspiration coming from reading Lydia’s effort to become a model citizen at her blog….   

  1. Spend more time at the shopping complexes after work and take advantage of WiFi and electricity there. Minimise bringing work home so as to cut down on time spent on the computer. Plus, charge battery for laptop and use it till it runs out of juice before charging up again.
  2. Abstain from DVD purchases for the next couple of months no matter how long I’ve been waiting for that particular DVD or how much i loved the movie. Flee from temptation by avoiding personal favourite DVD haunts such as 1 Utama’s Movie Magic and Speedy Video and Speedy Video at Giant Hypermarket at Kelana Jaya. No dangling carrots in front of me and I’m safe!
  3. Same thing with books. So, it’s buy-…oops…I meant bye-bye to my favourite book joints at 1 Utama’s MPH Bookstore, Ikano’s Popular Bookstore and The Curve’s Borders Bookstore. Summon every single effort and muscle in my body to read the books that’s been languishing in my “to read” box. When…and if I decide to read…read outside the house, preferably by the pool, so that I don’t use electricity in the home (I can’t read without the fan turned on at full blast or the air-cond on…). This way, I’ll take advantage of the free ventilation afforded by the moving air of my surroundings. Plus…I really do need the fresh air!
  4. Strictly use SMS only…no outgoing calls unless it is strictly necessary.
  5. Take ONE hot shower a day only! Take cold showers in the evening only! I must commit myself to spending only 10 minutes in the showers.
  6. Take advantage of friends belanja-ing makan. Remember to say “thank you” and reply in kind in the future. Don’t go anywhere upscale and if I have too, ensure it’s only for food reviews so as to get to eat for free! If I can skip lunch or dinner, do skip it and rely on junk food to sustain yourself. Always remember that I can still live without a meal. Use the Muslim example of fasting as motivation. If they can do it, why can’t I?
  7. Start keeping a budget and start keeping tabs on my finances to avoid spending more than necessary. Leave ATM cards at home to avoid the temptation of withdrawing money at shopping malls.

That’s as much as I can do at the moment to ensure I can save as much as I could. I really do understand that raising the petrol and electricity rates are absolutely necessary considering the global increase of the priceless resources, so I will be the good citizen and not complain, gripe and moan about it….unless they gave me cause to do so, such as spending us taxpayers’ cash into silly, inconsequential projects such as a scenic, crooked bridge, silly looking lamp designs and useless monuments and structures that are actually an eyesore instead of beautifying the cities in the country.

Well, the government’s doing all they can anyhow. So my fellow Malaysians, do what you can to save and make sure you stick to it as much as you can. Cause from the way I see it, I believe the following days are not going to be very bright and rosy for all of us.

Though sometimes, I just wish I could grow money on trees…wish the money-tree is the real-deal… Well, we can always dream, eh? ^_^  

                                   Don't we all wish money does grow on trees?         

                                                The Money Tree as Mother Nature intended...just who the heck thought up the plant's name anyways??


  1. Philip, sounds like a doable list to me. You deserve a Model Citizen Award too. BTW for cheap books, go to Pay Less. Selection of books is not very good but sometimes you get lucky.

  2. Thanks for the encouragement!

    I frequent Pay Less all the time whenever I’m at Atria and there have been the few times when I got lucky indeed! But nowadays, I’ve not been very lucky with there. The bulk of my book spending these last couple of months has been at warehouse sales organised by MPH and TIMES.

  3. Sora

    I am empathetic to your plight, as I am in the same financial boat as you. You scrimp, you save, you *think* you’re getting ahead in the game and BOOM! You get the pins knocked out from under you.

    I have a hard time also resisting those purchases, DVD’s especially. I’ve taken to the practice of waiting at least 3 months after a DVD is released; by that time most retailers have marked them down a bit. Other adjustments have been made too, such as no more side trips in the car, packing food for work instead of getting take-out, etc. Ohh, a pauper’s life is a tough one, eh?

    You’re on the right track; remember, “…resistance is NOT futile.”

  4. Ohh…a pauper’s life is a tough one, eh?

    It sure is, Sora! Dreaming of the days back in my childhood when I should have saved more money than buying all those G.I Joes and Transformers. But what can a kid do in the face of all those bloody cool toys? Now I wish that I had kept them in mint condition so that I can sell them over at Ebay to get some extra cash…

    To cope with my financial situation, I'm also planning to sell some of my old books which I've read before that I find not so interesting. Or maybe sell my soul to the world of insurance… Heh…whatever it takes! XD

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