Everyone’s got an opinion on Black Friday. I don’t bother with it. I have to work at my day job, anyway. I think the shopping is kind of ridiculous, I mean, I even have the night off from UPS. I COULD work, but I get paid for being off, and I despise working there (the work itself is fine, it’s just full of a-holes), so I feel my mental health is not worth the double pay.
I know I’m probably in a better position than most. I have two jobs when a lot of people don’t even have one (but it’s not like, nepotism, I work hard to ensure my employment status remains solid). Yeah, my cats are expensive lemons, but I realize they’re not nearly as expensive as children. So maybe if I was counting pennies that closely, I would be more apt to wait in line at ungodly hours to get a good deal. I’m not rich. In fact, I’m a shopaholic. I don’t save enough. I like to buy things. I like to buy things way too much. But I also work an awful lot to afford whatever luxuries I enjoy.
But here’s what I think.
I don’t care. I don’t care how good of a deal it is. Just like choosing to not work for double pay, I can’t possibly imagine that there is a deal good enough for me to brave crowds. Crowds of PEOPLE. You know what I really hate? Waiting. I have no patience. I like efficiency. I can be in and out of a grocery store in 15 minutes. I don’t try on things at stores, I only buy things I know will fit or that I know I can alter to fit. And frankly, I’d rather pay the extra money.
This may shock people, but I don’t shop at Wal-mart. Ever. Why? I don’t like their business practices. I don’t like the way they treat employees. I don’t like what they do to small businesses. And honestly, have you SEEN the people that shop there? I feel dirty just walking in one. I don’t need a deal that bad. So yeah, you know, I could probably quit my hated part-time job if I pinched pennies and got the lowest price everywhere. I guess I just take “caveat emptor” a little farther than most. I don’t want the big box stores of the world to be my only option.
To anyone reading this that frequents that store, it’s not my intention to offend. I just hope that you think about who’s getting your money.
Here comes the pitch: shop Small Business Saturday. I challenge you to spend your Saturday shopping ONLY at local businesses. You’ll help your local economy, you’ll help the little guy, and most of all, you might find out that the guy who owns the hole-in-the-wall pet store has some really amazing advice. You might pay a little more. But I’ve found some jewels trying to avoid PetSmart. Nothing against PetSmart employees, but most of them are there for a paycheck. You’d be amazed at what you can find when you check out businesses that are in business solely because they truly care about what they’re shilling. They’re actually knowledgeable about their products. People who do what they love are inspiring…when that rubs off on you, it’s worth whatever you would have saved shopping with the giants. I know I’m old fashioned. Sometimes I want to have kids just to force my old fashionedness on them. Dying breed, we are.
I find it slightly ridiculous that “Small Business Saturday” is sponsored by American Express, but you know, it’s a damn good idea. And you don’t have to use your Amex to partake. So don’t.
And if you’re feeling really snazzy, make your presents this year. I am. I might even make the cats presents. Maybe I’ll finally get around to making that cat tree.
The chronicles of Taco are neverending.
So I decided that since Taco is having a flare-up, we should try the laser therapy again. It’s not as expensive as you’d think, and my vet said that she has had success with cats who have worse flare-ups than Taco. Last time we only did one session, this time we’re going to try for the recommended 2-3. The weather is crazy windy out right now and for some reason that seems to freak Taco out more. I mean, I don’t like wind either, but it doesn’t cause MY mental issues to flare. Then again, my hormones do that for me once a month. That’s totally another story.
Taco is again a laser kitty. I don’t know why laser sounds amuse me so.
I also went to the pet store yesterday, a real one, not one of those big fancy “we don’t really know anything about pets” places. I love small businesses. I swear, I have been a cranky old lady since I was 14. I refuse to shop at Wal-Mart. Anyway. I needed more cat urine cleaner. The one that I had sucked. Or Taco’s pee is just really really strong. Anyway, I got a new kind (still smells like pee, this last episode of his was a doozy, none of the other couch pees have been this strong especially after cleaning, AND it was on the boyfriend’s favorite seat…yeah, that went over well). And I talked to the pet store guy, who was super friendly and you could tell knew what he was talking about, like the kind of people who own businesses because they actually give a shit about what they’re doing rather than making a boatload of money. He made a lot of suggestions. And they were all things I’ve already tried. I could see the surprise on his face, I don’t think that he’s ever had such a thorough crazy cat lady asking for help before. He quizzed me on my number of litterboxes vs. number of cats (2 cats, 3 boxes) and then he THOUGHT he was going to stump me when he asked if I used 3 different kinds of litter…and the answer is yes. Yes, I buy THREE different kinds of litter. I felt like passing this test elevated my crazy cat lady status. Unfortunately, it doesn’t get me any farther in fixing Taco. When I say I have tried everything, I really really mean I have tried everything. I even spray the couches with cat repellent.
Here’s what I did do. Because, you know, my parents always taught me that you should always ask for what you want, because the worst answer you can get is no. So I emailed the cat behaviorist people. I told them I can’t afford their $225 phone consultation. I told them that I have done everything I can possibly do and I just want to help my kitty. So I threw it all out there and asked if I could barter. Granted, my skills may not be in their demand (I work in marketing, they already have a really nice website and it appears they don’t need any help getting business) but I can do copywriting, proofreading, research…I even threw in fantasy football tips (although this may not be the year to ask me those, I’m doing miserably). I did leave out crafts, I’m not sure “decoupauged tissue box” is a viable offer. I haven’t gotten an answer. But even so, I tried. I didn’t ask for charity, although I certainly would accept it from them if they offered. So if they say no, I’m no worse off than I was before. It at least made me feel good, because I’m not giving up. I’m hard headed like that.