I am learning a lot from stopping shopping and some of it is brilliant such as, “I can survive without blowing £20 MAC lipstick even if it IS limited edition”, some of it is amusing like “who knew I had six red tops I’ve never worn because I don’t like red” and yet more of it is just pathetic like the latest, “I will avoid getting a refund on things because I’m a sook who doesn’t like to cause a fuss.”
The latest case in point being a very expensive external hard drive I bought (before I stopped shopping) in order to back up my manuscript and various other important documents, and also so I can easily take my work with me when I am mobilised to some god forsaken corner of the earth with the Thunderbirds. I thought it would be as simple as plug it in and away we go but in reality could I get it to work? Could I fuck. I spent hours poring over manuals and reviews online trying to find the trick to make the damn thing come to life but no dice and so it remained a very pretty, very expensive paperweight. I caved and started asking the techie men and women around me for help but even they couldn’t crack the code and get it working.
This is where I’ve learnt my lesson since trying to make myself more fiscally aware as my wussy head was trying to convince me to put the hard drive in a drawer and look at it again a few months down the line when somehow (magic?) I’d suddenly have the skills to make the damn thing work. Of course if I had done that I’d have fished it out 6 months into the future, not been able to make it work and been lumbered with a £99 doorstop so instead I decided to stop being such a bloody girlpants and take it back to the shop for them to sort.
I plucked up the courage to go and ask for my money back and so with my heart in my mouth I went into the store clutching the useless hard drive. Cue Mr Patronising Computer Shop Worker who clearly relished looking down on my from his computer knowledge ivory tower and was determined to make me look like an utter thick by plugging the hard drive in and making it work instantly. Well, IN YOUR FACE Mr Patronising Computer Shop Worker looking down on me from your computer knowledge ivory tower because you couldn’t get it to work either could you! I confess I did internal cartwheels when he admitted defeat after about ten minutes before handing me a replacement (different brand) and some cold hard cash.
When I went into the shop I could cheerfully have vomited on him through fear but by the time I came out I was practically skipping with delight at my bravery. Alright so it was hardly the twelve labours of Hercules but it was an important step forward in my quest to reclaim some financial nouse. Buoyed by my success with the hard drive fiasco I then tackled the next thing on my hit list and took back some shoes that I bought in a final act of financial recklessness on the day before I stopped shopping. A month later and the heels are coming apart which is a pretty poor show given I’ve only worn them a couple of times so with a hop, a skip and some steely determination I made it into the shoe shop and back out again with a full refund in my purse. Old me would have swapped the shoes for another pair and then probably spent a squillion pounds on yet more shoes I don’t need so to come out in the black with dollars in my pocket was a bonus.
I’m almost at the stage where if you stop moving for long enough, I’ll try and get you refunded…