Surrendering to Rampant Consumerism (and Finding it Pleasant)

Marge, weren’t you listening? This is a miracle breakthrough! Not one of these cheapo sucker deals!

– Homer Simpson

I’m sure I’ve mentioned that I am cheap careful with a dollar (or pound). Generally, I am very skeptical of designs on my cash, particularly for items that seemed unnecessary. “Who would spend money on a [blank] when everyone already has a perfectly good [blank]?” I’ve been heard to mutter on many an occasion.

(Incidentally, I saw an elderly lady muttering to herself — loudly — in the produce section the other day. “These apples aren’t as nice as last week!” she declared.  I gave her a big sympathetic smile about the apples, because that? That right there? Is going to be me. Big-time.)

My skinflint ways have been good for the bank account, but recently, I’ve become more susceptible to the siren song of convenience products. The Kev is bemused by the number of packages arriving at the house. I am simply too aggravated these days to resist things that might make my life a little easier. Maybe it’s because we’re in Project Mode, maybe it’s because I’m channeling Danny Glover.

I'm getting too old for this *@&^.

I’m getting too old for this *@&^.

Or maybe it’s because I freaked myself out shouting at my shoes the other day.

Whatever the reason, I picked up three things that have actually made things run smoother around here.

1. LED Motion Detector Light

The basement workroom has a single-bulb socket and a fluorescent fixture, both on pull chains and both several steps into the room. I have stubbed my toes so many times going down there at night, but I always muttered that I was perfectly capable of pulling a light chain, grumble grumble grumble. The other day I thought, what if a light came on automatically?

I put this in the single-socket fixture, and my toes have been safe ever since! It doesn’t throw out much light, but it’s more than enough to let me find what I’m looking for or get over to the fluorescent pullchain without injury.

2. Over-Door Shoe Storage

We had one of those wire, over-door shoe storage racks forEVer. It took up a lot of space and wasn’t all that efficient. But “we already own a shoe storage thing, I’m not buying another one!” Until I did.

Because it’s made of fabric, it doesn’t take up as much space away from the door, and I was able to put it on the back of our coat closet door in a narrow space, and store more shoes. Who knew??

3. Spice Storage Rack

Our spice cupboard has been through many iterations, and each time, it’s a little better than the last version. But it still doesn’t handle all our stuff, and it still becomes a huge mess. I noticed that my sister-in-law (of furniture-wrangling fame) had a new spice rack that was kind of cool. Since I’m APPARENTLY just made of money lately, I bought one, too.

I can’t help feeling as if there’s a tiny Borg Collective in my cabinet whenever I open it and find this cube in there. But I’m good with being assimilated because our spices are finally easy to find and neatly organized.

I can’t imagine this is a trend of any sort. I haven’t changed my fundamental nature. But these purchases do make things nicer around here.

What products have made your life easier? Did you resist their allure at first, or are you a shopping guru?

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