More is less – when value is vicious

When I spend money, I love feeling that I got a good deal, or got good value for my dollar. It’s like a mini-win that always puts me in a good mood for at least 2 minutes. Recently, though, I’ve started realizing that value can be vicious and sometimes it’s worth paying more for less. Example: I live next to a Ben and Jerry’s (-pausing for effect-), where a single scoop of ice cream costs $4.20 (first funny…then angering; $4.20 for one scoop?!). Anyways, just up the street there’s a little grocery shop where I can get a PINT of Ben and Jerry’s for only $4.00. No brainer, right? I’d walk past the line at Ben and Jerry’s with my pint in hand, laughing inside.

And then I realized that those folks were getting the better deal.

Have you glanced at the fat content on a Ben and Jerry’s pint recently?! Folks, there’s a REASON it’s so good. And that reason has costs associated with it. Sure, there are the obvious health costs, but in my head I was thinking “I’m going to have to swim how many laps to burn this off??” That’s time cost, which is much more tangible. When adding up these costs, turns out that it’s cheaper for me to spend $4.20 on a scoop than $4.00 on a pint when I need my fix — so now that’s what I do (my parents think I’m crazy). I’ve applied the same thinking at Starbucks, where I’ve started paying $2.65 for a short mocha (it’s not even on the menu) instead of $2.95 for a tall. I’m getting the most expensive (dollar wise) mocha on the menu at an already expensive joint, but in my mind it’s the best deal they’ve got.

Anyways, the word “value” has taken on a whole new meaning for me. Meanwhile, my parents are wondering where they went wrong…how can spending more = better deal?!

Update: I just bought valueisvicious.com…maybe there’s a book in here. Want to write it? : )

1 comment

  1. Otis Aug 15

    Good philosophy – makes sense to me!

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