Saturday, July 12, 2008

What Can I Say? I Faltered.

What can I say? I bought some beer. I broke down and bought some beer. I broke the pledge.

But there were mitigating circumstances.

We got our Economic Stimulus Check (read: Govt Bribe) and I have two nickels to rub together. Now if this isn't a reason to celebrate, I don't know what is. We didn't impeach him, so we get a kickback. Most all of this money is slated for bills, but I did make sure that a small portion of this money went to the betterment of the family. I filled my tank and purchased a five pack of strip steaks. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy bologna and Ramon noodles as much as the next person, but every once in a while you need to treat your family. I scored major points with Flannery the other night when out of nowhere I produce hot N.Y. strip with a garlic & black pepper crust, medium well. The next day at lunchtime, she is still telling me how good that steak was. I also made sure we were stocked up on batteries, light bulbs, and duct tape, as you never know when an emergency might arise. (Little did I know that Flannery had just purchased batteries and light bulbs, so we are doubly stocked now.) I purchased some things for the yard and a new lock for the shed. There was a fair amount of money spent but none of it was blown on frivolities, unless you count the six tacos we ate at the park.

I feel asleep early Wednesday and when I awoke at 12:33 am, I was up for the night. I read your blogs and played Solitaire. The kids were up early and I made them breakfast, but as the coffee ran out so did my steam. The children spent the morning at each other's throats, and I kept having to separate them with a reminder about Rule #1.

"Lucy, what is Rule #1?" I barked.

"do no harm..." she said softly.

"Punching Sister in the nose breaks Rule #1!"

"i'm sorry..." she purred. Twenty minutes later it was the same thing, only both parties claimed that they had been unjustly attacked. It was like trying to babysit two rabid badgers. I cleaned them, dressed them, and took them to the one place on earth that makes every kid bored: Home Depot.

Then we purchased tacos from Toxic Hell and went to the park. They left a fine mess for the birds to clean up and we hiked to the children's garden. I barely had enough energy to propel myself after my two little dynamos, but I managed to keep up, just. On the ride home, we stopped at the gas station. I went inside only after extracting a promise that they would be good for the rest of the day if I bought ice cream sandwiches along with the pack of smokes I stopped for.

The next few minutes passed in a sleepless blur, but I left the store with my pack of smokes, two ice cream sandwiches, and a case of Bud in cans that had miraculously appeared in my hand. I am not one to look a miracle in the mouth, so I took the cans home to see to their proper disposal.

Technically, I have broken the pledge, and for that I am truly sorry.

But the point of the experiment was to see how much money we saved, and I have managed to make it through one week of a two week experiment, all is not lost.

I have been spending $7.23 on a twelve pack of PBR, and purchasing four a week works out to $28.92. Double that figure for two weeks works out to $57.84. I spent $16.00 on the case of Bud and no one had to be throttled to within an inch of their life. I think the savings far outweighs my my minor transgression. $57.84 minus $16.00 works out to Doc not "being a dull boy" and flying off the handle at passers-by and being untolerable to his friends, family, and coworkers.

Besides, the experiment was taking a direction that I hadn't intended. It was not my intention to see how much beer I could mooch from my friends but that is what it was becoming. They couldn't sit and enjoy a beer in my company without feeling obliged to offer me one, and I'm sure that got old very quickly. No one wants a beer bum hanging about all the time, regardless how scintillating his conversation might be.

But the experiment isn't a total loss and I am not prepared to scrap it yet. I will continue to limit my beer and keep my expenditure under $41.87 until Wednesday when it ends. I will purchase less and try to make it last longer and therefore save money, which was the point of the whole experiment.

I hope you don't think less of ol' Doc because he fell off the wagon. In the immortal words of Billy Joel, "Every dog must have his everyday, every drunk must have his drink." Truer words were never spoken.



  1. Besides, I don't think I will ever be able to drink another Coke ever.


  2. I don't worry about the beer Doc, but I worry about the smokes. I buried my dad because of them, I watched my mom die slowly because of them, I lost a close friend because of them.

    Please quit sir, if for no other reason, just so Riley will not have to bury you young.

  3. Doc...dont ya just hate it when the beer jumps off the shelves and into your arms?

    I am proud of you for waiting as long as you did. Shows stamina.

    You weakling.


  4. you know, beer is like batteries and lightbulbs: it's a consumable resource that WILL get consumed sooner or later. You can't exactly WASTE it, can you?

    Good idea w/the steaks, too-- I wouldn't have thought of that, probably.

  5. I'm with Skydad - think of all the money you'll save not buying smokes that you can spend on B-E-E-R!

  6. I'm glad you went to all the trouble with this experiment to discover the simple truth that moderation is everything.


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