Thursday, August 14, 2008


Unless you live in total isolation and haven't seen a newspaper, circular or TV, you have already realized that it's BACK TO SCHOOL sale time. You don't have to be a rocket scientist to know that August's the ideal month to stock up on school and office supplies, clothing, furnishings for dorm rooms and student apartments, school related electronics and computers. If it's school- related, now's the time to buy it.

We miss our school days...buying our new Buster Browns for fall, shopping for our school wardrobe and fighting with our moms in the Sears dressing room, wondering who our teacher might be, worrying about missing the school bus on the first day, plotting how to keep the schoolyard bully from stealing our lunch money, choosing just the right lunchbox and notebook -- cool enough to fit in yet ironic enough to amuse our close friends all year long. Maybe we're actually relieved to have survived the trauma. But we digress. As is our custom.

In the retail world, summer is over*, so look for clearance sales on summer-oriented items from bathing suits, clothes, to outdoor grills. Retailers need space for the fall items, and you can still get a couple months use out of them this year what with our new and vastly unimproved Crazy World Weather. (Oh sure, President Bush, there's no such thing as global warming. Let's call it global weirding.)

*In the real world, summer is almost over so it's high time to lower those standards and have that last desperate romantic summer fling. Summer isn't summer without some regrets.

August is our Nation's harvest time, so make it a point to visit a Farmer's Market or stop at a roadside stand or just take advantage of the abundancy of fresh produce on sale at your local supermarket. Of course, if you want to be really cheap like we are, this is the perfect time to start canning and freezing the fresh produce for the winter. We're sure that's what domestic goddess and icon of home and hearth Martha is doing right now. (Bringing in the harvest singlehandedly and canning for the winter wearing a cunning little apron she sewed herself and a hat she wove out of twigs and berries. How festive.)

Do you know what Peridot is? Yeah, we didn't either until we Googled it. It's August's birthstone, it's green, and many Jewelers have them on sale for gifts this month.

Finally, there are less than 150 days before Christmas. (Before you get your P.C. panties in a bunch, Chanukah starts December 21, and Kwanzaa is December 26.) But who's counting? We're counting. Call us crazy, but here at CHEAPIOSITY, we plan ahead so the financial bite of our overwhelming generosity doesn't kill us in December and January. It's never too soon to start thinking about the holidays. The stores are already decked out in full-on Halloween. Time flies in the marketplace. Our year tumbles to a close, accelerating exponentially. So start your smart holiday gift-buying now.

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