14 March 2014

Money-Saving Tips for Saving Money, or How to Save Money, Part I: Saving Money

Tips on saving money are a popular topic for a blog post.  Of course, no one wants to give up anything they are accustomed to or rein in their reckless spending, so the tips have to be practical but not obvious, doable by the lazy yet extremely effective – well, they can be obvious and still get a lot of clicks, there are plenty of morons out there who will click on anything if they think it can help them save a buck and they’re stuck at work with time to kill.  But the tips should make sense for the average internet user, or lowest common denominator (this refers to the average reader, not to you of course).  Okay?  Here we go.

Let’s start with the mother of all money-saving tips, let’s call it Tip One, or The Big Tip.  If you remember just one thing said to you this entire year, make it this: 

Money-Saving Tip #1, aka The Big Tip:
Don’t spend a single [string of expletives deleted] penny of your own money, ever, unless you absolutely have to in order to survive the next 24-48 hours. 

All of the following sub-tips flow from The Big Tip.  They’re pretty obvious but for contractual reasons we are required to list them out, hope it doesn’t bother you too much, have some time to kill here before the zamboni arrives and don’t we all?

Prioritize.  Do you really need another private rollercoaster, or all those beverage warmers you keep ‘investing’ in?  They are not going to increase in value, no matter how many you buy.  Maybe you can wait another year to renew your steamboat pilot’s license.  You already own both the original and the Swedish remake of Apocalypse Now, Danny and the Dinosaur on DVD and you never watch it; do you really need it on Blu-Ray?

Borrow Don’t Buy. Think about what is the one thing you could buy that would make you happy.  Do any of your friends have one you can borrow and hang onto until you’re sick of it?  Could you persuade one of them to get one?  Become a kleptomaniac and there you are with a perfectly legitimate excuse for why you can’t keep your grubby paws off of other peoples’ stuff: it’s a sickness, you can’t stop, see?

Related tip:  The best repayment plan is none at all.  Avoid your creditors at all costs, give them any excuse you can think of with a straight face, never repay any debt unless under credible threat of imminent violence.  While only a short-term solution, this can work as a bridge to get you through a rough patch until you can scrape up enough scratch to purchase a new Gadgetbox High-Performance Entertainment Platform Thingy on your own.

Use my unique patented Envelope SystemTM. This is how it works: Set a monthly budget and put all of your money into different envelopes, one envelope for each dollar.  Label the envelopes and file them according to date and need.  Pay each expense on time using the correct envelope (or stack of them) and record the expenditure in your ledger, i.e., on a separate envelope.  At the end of each month, review your expenditures in detail to eliminate all waste.  Re-use the backs of the used envelopes to estimate next month’s budget.  Then order another case of envelopes. 

Of course, even rich folk wanna save a penny, so here are a few tips for you Richie Rich types.

Keep most of your extensive holdings in overseas tax shelters (actually all holdings should be stored in a proper vault rather than in something so flimsy as a shelter or an improvised lean-to). With the money you save on taxes, invest in buying the government so that your revenue streams rest on a solid legal if not moral foundation.  Form alliances with other filthy rich bastards.  Become golf buddies with the head of the gestapo.  Sponsor equestrian fairs to recruit up and coming talent to the organization.

Control the message.  Framing is everything.  Buy or create magazines that glamorize the lavish lifestyle and publish life-destroying revelations about anyone who dares speak up against.  Start a dangerous new blog that sweeps the nation.  Take over the internet with your hysterical Wallabies in Overalls Fixing Up Old Barns tumblr.  Gobble up old media titans for pennies on the dollar.  Hand out free brochures in supermarket parking lots.  Get on Twitter, buy some Followers and espouse, espouse, espouse.

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