Cheapness at Work

Are men cheaper than women? Or are we just more practical sometimes?

I think it varies from person to person. True, men do tend hunt more often whereas women tend to be gatherers (insofar as shopping is concerned), which thus begs the question... do men hunt for bargains?

I'll give you an example.

Yesterday I went downtown to the Eaton's Centre, shopped around and eventually found a backpack i liked for $49.95 + tax. In theory I could have kept looking and maybe found a cheaper one for say $30, but I didn't bother. The backpack I found was pretty good quality and I figured it would last a long time (considering I take pretty good care of such things, this is very true of all my previous backpacks, satchels and whatnot).

HOWEVER, I utterly refused to spend a penny more than $60 on a backpack. There were quite a few backpacks are saw in the $80 to $100 range and it was a struggle to find one large enough that I liked in the $30 - $50 price range.

Thus in essence I was hunting for something very specific. ("Oh no, I can't shoot that deer. Its too big. Lets shoot a smaller one!")

I've noticed in the past there is also the time element. I don't want to waste too much time looking for one thing, especially if it will only save me $10 or so. Spending 2-4 hours looking for something and buying roughly the same thing for slightly less isn't my style. If I find what I like and its in the right price range I will probably take it.

Does this make me cheap? No, I think it makes me discerning and practical.

Lets pretend I was looking for car insurance quotes... Now if I was driving a cheap old Ford I probably wouldn't look very hard and I might take the first car insurance company I find without really shopping around because: A. Its a cheap car and the insurance isn't going to be a lot. B. Its not really worth the time and effort shopping around for what is likely roughly the same quote anyway. C. When it comes to car insurance YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR. This means some companies have better reputations and are less likely to rip you off when it comes time to actually use it.

Lets pretend I have the option between two pairs of shoes:

1. $120 Nikes: They will last a really long time, they're super comfortable, easy to clean, look good and we're probably made using child labour in India or China for all I know.

2. $20 Crappy Shoes: I have no idea how long they will last, and they were also made in India or China (and again probably using child labour).

Obviously I want to choose the Nikes, because in theory the cheap shoes are more likely to be made using child labour, but also because its a significantly better product. Furthermore if something happens to the shoes in the first week or so and I complain to Nike about it they will REPLACE THE SHOES. When you buy a brand name product, even though it doesn't come with a warranty, the company is committed to quality and will replace it.

Now lets pretend I want to lose weight... do I:

A. Go out and get liposuction for $5,000?

B. Join a gym and maybe buy Creatine pills from a natural medicine clinic?

Chances are likely the answer will be B. Because in this scenario $5,000 just seems unreasonably expensive and I would much rather ADD muscle weight and tone up the natural way instead. (See also Protein Supplements & Creatine at Work.)

Sometimes cheapness is directly connected to LAZINESS (either in conjunction or in opposition, because both are possible). For our next example lets say I am entering Lenzr's photo contest (they hold regular photo contests online). Do I:

A. Pick out a photo already on my computer, fill out the online form and send it in?

B. Go outside, take a couple hundred new photographs, waste a whole day (or several days) taking lots of photographs and send in the best ones? With no guarantee I will win.

You can pretty much bet it will be option A. Not because I am lazy, but because there's no guarantee I'd win anything anyway and its too freaking cold outside to be taking photographs anyway. I wanna stay inside where its warm!

Next lets pretend I want to do something expensive... like make a new application for my iPhone (I don't actually own an iPhone, this is just an example)... I get this really kewl idea for an app, but nobody else has thought of it yet so there's nothing remotely similar to it on the market (or maybe there is, but its too freaking expensive)... do I:

1. Hire some techie guy who may or may not know what he is doing?

2. Hire a professional mobile application developer?

In this situation I think its better to hire the professional. After all would you really want to hire an amateur to work on your Lamborghini, your house's plumbing or (egad!) open heart surgery on your mother? No, you're going to hire someone with training, experience and they're guaranteed to know what they're doing.

Its not going to be cheap, but the situation demands a person be practical.

Of course then there are some idiot men out there who think they can fix a car, do their own plumbing and you can guess what happens. They make a mess of it and end up having to spend even more on a professional to fix it. Thank god they draw the line at open heart surgery.

In conclusion are men cheap? No. But some of them are really stupid and arrogant.

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