So-called spending advice

Anyone who read my post on Saturday may recall I picked up a couple of books in my local library, one of which was How To Live For Free: 80 Ways To Slash Your Spending.

book

I sat down to read it last night and…lasted about 5 minutes. What IS this book? A title such as, oh I don’t know, How To Live Like A Freeloading A-hole might be more appropriate. I only skimmed the rest of the book with amazement after hitting page 13 so maybe I’m not being fair. Perhaps there are truly great pearls of wisdom shimmering between its innocent looking covers. Better pearls of wisdom, I’d hope, than the ideas contained under a section headed ‘Tricks to avoid ever paying for a round of drinks’. These marvellous ideas include: holding the door open for your friends so they get to the bar first and buy you a drink because you were so courteous (and last to arrive at the bar), drinking with affluent people who will buy you drinks without noticing you aren’t spending and leaving early before it’s your turn. I honestly can’t tell if this is supposed to be funny or not. If it is, the author really needs to master a comic turn of phrase to make this clear!

And while I’m on the subject – what is with the contradictory statements on the front cover (see photo)? The first says ‘You really can hang on to your money and your lifestyle’. First off – this is clearly utter rubbish unless your lifestyle involves hanging on to your money in the first place – anything else is an adjustment to your lifestyle even if it turns out to be for the better. Second statement: ‘How To Live For Free’. Ok. This is fine in itself though makes no real sense when combined with the first statement unless, again, you lived for free to begin with. Lastly: ’80 ways to slash your spending’. WHAT? If you are actually going to live for free then surely you’d need (at least) 80 tips on how to stop your spending, not just cutting it down. Slashing your spending means spending less, not spending nothing. I am not unreasonable. I didn’t expect a book to actually be able to tell me how to live for free. But I didn’t expect to be told to be a freeloader either. It is exactly this kind of crap that gives people on a budget a bad name…

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Categories: Ramblings | 7 Comments

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7 thoughts on “So-called spending advice

  1. I read a SHIT book recently by Tara Palmer Tompkinson about being glam on a budget (eh?! Isn’t she a millionaire?!) and it offered similarly rubbish advice.

    It suggested you could throw a brilliant party for only £30 like this:

    Ask posh bars for empty bottles of expensive wine and champagne (tell them it’s for an art project).
    Fill champage bottles with Appletizer (same colour and fizz).
    Fill wine bottles with cheap boxed wine. Serve this.
    At the party, loudly announce to your guests that you’re going to the kitchen to get the champers.
    Smash the bottle on the floor, scream out and start crying.
    Blub about what a clumsy idiot you are until one of your guests rushes out to replace your spilt “champage”.

    What kind of advice is that?! After I’d seen that I didn’t read another word.

  2. Get a funny book, something that will make you laugh or really get to you, with a touching story and stick with the blogs for tips on how to save money. They are free and written by people who are learning from experience. Hope you had a good weekend x

  3. shoestringalley

    Holly – I feel your pain. I’m just glad I didn’t part with any cash to read this rubbish!

    Recessionista – You are completely right. I’ve found reading blogger’s experiences much more motivational on the whole. I’ve still got another book up my sleeve though…

    xx

  4. thefrenchchick

    Too bad the author’s picture isn’t in the book. Might want to know what he looks like so you can either; 1. avoid him like the plague or 2. get him to buy a round of drinks and upset his budget 🙂

    I can’t believe someone actually published that thing he calls a book.

  5. I await the next book with anticipation and trepidation! I am waiting for you to find one that will save us all!

  6. I love saving money, but the thrill of it for me is to not LOOK like a pauper, even if I spend like one.
    Plus I would like to keep some friends.

    That champagne trick in the first comment is too much! Suppose you throw a party more than once a year? People will be on to you!

  7. shoestringalley

    Either that or they’ll think you’ve got some kind of condition that makes you seriously clumsy (and possibly quite overdramatic)!

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