Discount Diva: Do you take being frugal a bit too far? - The Buffalo News
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Discount Diva: Do you take being frugal a bit too far?

Look, it’s well established that I will go the extra, gross mile to save money. But I’m not “Extreme Cheapskates” cheap, where I’m reusing dental floss or making multi-use toilet paper.

I’ll definitely do some things that another person might turn their nose up at, though. I consider my bread perfectly edible once I’ve torn off any little spots of fuzzy, green mold. I’m a garbage picker. And I’ve bought secondhand shoes on Facebook.

So, of course, an article on Money Crashers, outlining “9 signs that you’re a miserly cheapskate,” caught my attention.

Let’s see how we measure up under other people’s frugality yardsticks, shall we?

You brew more than one pot of coffee with the same grinds. Really? This is a sign you’ve gone too far?

I’ve never done it, but only because I really don’t drink coffee. I have, however, used my teabag beyond an inch of its life.

You reuse paper products. True cheapskates believe that disposable paper towels, napkins and tissues are a waste to begin with. That’s what rags, cloth napkins and handkerchiefs are for.

Unlike my grandma, I don’t wash out used paper towels and hang them to dry. But if I have a napkin or paper towel that has a lot of clean space on it, I will reuse it (and reuse it and reuse it) before throwing it away.

You spend the whole day grocery shopping. The author says you’ll spend more on gas than what you save on groceries. But with everything so close in Western New York, I doubt that is really a problem.

I admire those of you who will shop ALDI, Tops, Wegmans, Consumer’s Beverage, Budwey’s and wherever else in order to get the best prices for everything on your list. The best I can do is stagger my trips so I pick up certain things at one store one week, and at another store the next week.

You hang onto broken things that you’ll never repair. OK, this is one I can get behind. For years, I kept things that I swore were in perfectly good condition – aside from the fact that they were IRREPARABLY BROKEN.

Seeing how long I held onto those things without fixing them made me realize I would never fix the next broken thing, either.

You work on your cars yourself – even though you don’t know how. What, is this girl psychic? I just finished YouTubing “how to change brakes and rotors.”

I probably won’t really attempt to do the work on my own, though. Probably.

You ignore expiration dates. Heck yes, I ignore expiration dates! Manufacturers and the Food and Drug Administration have said the label dates are simply a guide and that they represent when food is at its peak freshness rather than when it goes bad.

You’ll take anything when you dumpster dive. I’ve only done it a couple of times, but what a rush! Yes, I did grab some dumb things, but you would not believe the perfectly good merchandise stores throw in the garbage.

You crash weddings for the free food. I’ve never done this, but only because I didn’t think of it first.

Just kidding. I would never barge in on a family’s special event like that. I did, however, crash plenty of receptions in the student union at UB while I was in college, pretending to be a member of whatever organization was sponsoring the free spread.

You jump into the water after your golf ball. I don’t golf. But if I did, I’d be impressed by anyone who did this.

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