A half-pound of coffee and a reminder of where my value lies…

Alisa and I are trying to be more conscious of our health, so far as it relates to our coffee intake. We both love our legal stimulant, so we brew at least a couple cups a day. We’re concerned about developing addictions, so we decided to make the switch to decaf. Therefore, when we ran out of coffee this afternoon, I decided to drop by the Starbucks on campus to replenish our supply. (Sidenote: Never purchase Starbucks coffee at the grocery store. I spotted it on sale at Target one week and thought I was getting a good deal. Later, I discovered that I paid $6.50 for a half-pound of coffee that sold for $5.20 at Starbucks.) Decaf isn’t quite as good in my book, so I figured we better invest in some good decaf if this is going to be a successful venture.

After class, I drove across campus to complete this mission. I had a cup of cheap Maxwell House coffee today, and I don’t want to repeat the experience if I can help it. (Music snob? check. Dating snob? check. Food snob? check. Coffee snob? you guessed it – check.) I parked behind the student center, jogged over and climbed the stairs to the level where Starbucks is housed. I breathlessly approached the doors that stood between me and my eight ounces of magic beans. Then, foolishly, an attractive young man stepped in my path.

“A new salon is opening in town,” he told me. “We’re doing a promotional offer for fifty women on campus. Has anyone approached you about this yet?”

I sighed. Anyone who knows me well can testify that I don’t like to spend a lot of money on my appearance. Oh sure – I’m high maintenance enough. 😉 But I am nearly the definition of a bargain shopper. Even my nicest clothes and biggest indulgences were on sale. I don’t go to fancy salons. I’d rather save the money for that pair of pinstriped slacks that I spotted on sale at Gap.

“How much do you spend on a haircut?” he asked.

“Fifteen dollars.” (I didn’t mention that the figure I gave him included tip.)

“Wow – you’re one of the lucky ones.”

He went on to tell me about the gimmick he was promoting. For the cost of a haircut – a $40 haircut, that is – I could experience all of these fantastic salon services! Whoop-ti-do.

The thing is, I briefly considered signing up for this deal. Sure, $40 isn’t so much for the list of services he showed me (which included highlighting and a 25 minute massage, among other things.) But I certainly don’t need to blow $40 on my appearance – at least, not in such a temporary, fleeting manner.

No, but I considered it because I have been feeling uncomfortable with my appearance over the past few days. I thought about forking over $40 – a sum I don’t come by easily – because my hair has looked frumpy. I thought about handing that guy – just a random guy who may not be who he says at all – the equivalent of a week and a half’s groceries because my skin has been breaking out and it makes me paranoid.

You know what? I think I’m a fairly cute girl. I’m generally happy with my appearance. But I’ve felt out of sorts for the past few days, and I considered this as a way to boost my self esteem.

That’s a sad state of affairs. It’s a good thing I didn’t have the $40 with me to give him.

(And for those who were wondering, I ended up spending $5.30 on a half pound of decaf Sumatra. I’ll let you know how it is.)

11 Comments

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11 Responses to A half-pound of coffee and a reminder of where my value lies…

  1. Pingback: The Indiana Jones School of Management » Weblog Fame

  2. I used to spend only $15 for a haircut – I did that for years. Then a few months ago, I started going to a friend for a haircut and now I spend $30. I’m still not fully comfortable with that. If I were you CJ, I’d resist that change as long as possible!

  3. Rus

    I love your new site! 🙂

    I’ve tried going decaf and just can’t stay there. There is a difference. I’d rather drink fewer cups each day than more cups of less quality. Am I rationalizing? Probably!! LOL

  4. I’ve been meaning to comment and say, “Nice first entry over here,” but I haven’t … so I will.

  5. mb

    I remember the first time I got a haircut outside of my small hometown and it cost $17. I was floored that it cost that much. Now I get $15 haircuts all the time and I don’t even think about.

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