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April 05, 2010


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Fun list, but don't mess with my coffee! Glad I only read my gossip magazines while waiting in line at the supermarket.

So, pay attention primarily to avoiding 1) online poker, 2) smoking, and 3) pricey daily coffee drinks. The rest is spare change by comparison!

Smoking cigarettes doesn't have to be that expensive. Davidoff and Parliament sell for under $3.50 in some places... Porn is definitely free.

I don't know about this list. Feels like they want you to really throw away everything you like in life. $240 a year is not really enough to make a dent in someones budget. E-mail is good, but its not that fast, and there are times you want to text instantly. E-mail is too 90s.

Online Poker: -$5,200 if you are no good
Online Poker: +$1,000,000 if you are good

That soft drink math must be talking about from a restaurant:

547/365 = $1.49/drink

Mine cost ~ $0.33 a can.

Online porn costs were per month not per year- would be $3600 per year, yikes!

Budgeting that you lose money each poker session means you should play for lower antes1

Of course there are free porn sites and free poker sites out there so this is taking in false savings by not doing these things.

It's like saying that by buying a Ferrari you'd spend $300k so by not purchasing this (even though you had no intention of doing this in the first place) you are saving $300k per year.

Actually when I think about this type of logic it is perfectly like Obama's statements on the way the US government is 'saving' all kinds of money!


The only one that get's me is the Latte one! I usually will drink 2 a week, mostly from McDonalds, but occasionally Starbucks too.

The rest of them, I got beat! I no longer do pop! I use "packets to go" for water.

It's a good thing that I do not buy coffee daily. Twice a week is my maximum. But to buy coffee on a daily basis, yikes!

I guess ignoring car maintenance is another common problem for most people.

I'm in an office Mega Millions pool - it's fun, worth the $2 a week ($104 a year, though I've usually only spent $80 or so because of minor winnings that get rolled back into it). Worth the couple bucks a week to pretend for a few seconds each week.

I play the penny games on the online poker, too...I think I'm down $3 for the last year or so. So not too bad.

Overall not a very good article. I mean, some of these are just dumb.

Drinking Soft Drinks - Annual cost for just one a day: $547.50 - I buy cans when they are on sale, no more the $2.50 a 12 pack - about $0.21 a can. $77 a year. I'm ok with that.
Reading Gossip Magazines - Annual subscription cost for two a week (People and one other): $194 - Two a week? That is 8 or 9 subscriptions! Who has that kind of time to read all those?
Buying Coffee - Annual cost for one cappuccino a day: $1,442 - Coffee for less than $1 at Speedway, and a pot at home costs less than that. Who spends $4 a day on cappuccino that reads these blogs?
Playing the Lottery - Annual cost for playing one set of numbers a day: $365 - Hate to be a stickler, but what about the wins? Regular daily lotteries pay out about 50%, so annually this would cost $182.50. Still a lot of wasted money, but not $365.
Getting Fries With That - Annual cost for getting fries with restaurant meals twice a week: $312 - Where does it cost $3 for fries? (52 weeks x 2 per week = 104 orders per year x $3 = $312) Aren't fries $1 at McDonald's and doesn't the upgrade for fries in a "value meal" less than $3?
Text Messaging - Annual cost for an unlimited text messaging option: $240 - I have 4 lines on my cell phone and it is $20 for all four lines. I save (literally) hundreds of minutes as my children mainly communicate via text. I have had phone bills with over 20,000 text messages sent and received. Granted, I could take away the phones, but it is something we value and use.
Watching Porn - Annual cost for a regular monthly adult subscription: $300 - Really? This is a savings? Not looking at porn?
Smoking Cigarettes - Annual cost for a pack a day: $1,825 for $5 packs; $3,650 for $10 packs. - This makes sense, but this is well known.
Playing Online Poker - Annual cost for one $100 session a week: $5,200 - As others have mentioned, if you're losing this much, you shouldn't be playing. If you want to continue to play, please contact me. :)
Ignoring Car Maintenance - Annual cost for hauling 100 extra pounds in a typical car: $34 Annual cost for improperly inflated tires: $172 Annual cost of a clogged air filter: $180 - Good advice.

"Text Messaging - Our plan doesn't have it and I have no need for it. Can't you just send an email? "

Sure, if you are sitting in front of a computer.

All of these prices seem to be incredibly inflated. Like others have mentioned, sodas cost about 25-35 cents a can (or cheaper if you get the two liter bottles). My fiancee gets two magazines, Glamour and another one, and she pays about $40-50 per year (Glamour is $12/year, not sure about the other one).

Do you know what is really expensive? Getting the Wall Street Journal. It costs us about $112/year with the professional rate.

Hunh, interesting list. Although, as others have mentioned, there are more than a few problems here. Just for example:

Buying Coffee: A quick plug into my calculator shows that this assumes you're spending nearly $4 a day, 365 days a year. Even getting beyond the fact that not every coffee place charges Starbucks level prices, do you really need a cappuccino every day of the year? (Although, I'll admit I'm speaking as a non-coffee drinker, so maybe they are that addictive.

Getting Fries with That: It seems to be missing the point a bit; if you're going out so much that you're spending this much on fries, maybe you should skip going out, period.

Watching Porn: I'm torn on this one. Yes, you can spend $300 per year per site if you actually subscribe. If you opt for the free stuff, though, you can get all your porn needs filled without paying a cent. (Unless you have truly odd or unusual tastes that just cannot be filled with free sites; but perhaps I've said too much...)

Smoking Cigarettes: From my relatives' experience, I know that rolling your own cigarettes, while not cheap, is much less expensive than buying pre-rolled packages.

Playing Online Poker: If you're losing $100 a week on your poker games, you need to (a) play lower stakes games, (b) trying playing at any of the numerous free sites, and (c) get better. Barring that, be sure to invite me to your next game!

Article doesn't take into account the lost-opportunities cost and potentially inflated medical bills.

If you're spending time distracting or medicating yourself with cigarettes, porn, gambling, junk food, caffeine, and celebrity gossip, you're not earning additional income that you could be through a side business and may be unwittingly setting yourself up for various, potentially catastrophically expensive health crises.

I don't agree that all of these are "bad habits". If you over pay for these things habitually then sure its an expensive habit but not necessarily a "bad" habit.
Smoking or full fledged gambling addiction is a bad habit. Otherwise I think most of this stuff is pretty harmless.

We do lots of these, but not at those prices :-)

Drinking Soft Drinks - We spend about $150 a year including fast food and restaurant drinks.

Reading Gossip Magazines - Nope.

Buying Coffee - Nope.

Playing the Lottery - I pay about $60 a year...I call it buying temporary hope when my job sucks. I also like daydreaming.

Getting Fries With That - We spend about $75 a year on fast food and restaurant fries.

Text Messaging - $120 a year for 300 text messages for each phone a month. Works great for us. Texting is awesome for grocery lists and addresses.

Watching Porn - much time does someone have for porn to spend $300? To my knowledge, this is a "nope" category.

Smoking Cigarettes - Nope.

Playing Online Poker - When we played in college, we netted about $2000. We don't play anymore since we ran out of time and the inclination.

Ignoring Car Maintenance - We follow the maintenance schedules in our manuals.

Drinking Soft Drinks - Don't like them, don't drink them. I don't think that equals money saved though. Just money diverted to drinks like OJ an milk.

Reading Gossip Magazines - I could care less about celebrity goings on.

Buying Coffee - There is nothing wrong with coffee.

Playing the Lottery - I'm not into gambling. But I will play if a pool starts up at work.

Getting Fries With That - I'm not a fast food fan. Then again, that just means I'm spending more money on quality food. So while I'm sure my health benefits, I'm not so sure that my wallet does.

Text Messaging - I despise text messaging. I don't send them and thankfully my friends don't spam me with too many of them.

Watching Porn - Doesn't about 40% of the internet consist of free porn?

Smoking Cigarettes - Don't smoke.

Playing Online Poker - Again, don't gamble.

Ignoring Car Maintenance - I'm guilty of this one.

Jon --

I can send an email from my phone...


Isn't paying for internet capability for a phone just as much or more than paying for a texting plan? Our text plan with Sprint is $10 a month jointly ($7.50 after my company discount) but email would be $15-$20 a month jointly depending on a few options.

Budgeting --

I don't know -- I get mine for free (from work). ;-)

So am I frugal if I only surf free porn :)

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