It’s okay to be selfish. It’s okay to be greedy. There I said it. Stockpile greed and selfishness have made many good things possible. We all do things that others would consider greedy or selfish. We couponers are guilty of this too. In a recent coupon forum, I have seen many many comments about greedy stockpilers. Some readers comment that stockpiling is okay as long as you leave some for other customers. Some readers think that emptying the shelves ought to be a crime, that it robs others of the chance to take advantage of the good deal that the store so rarely offers nowadays. The last group of readers that have commented on stockpiling have mentioned that it is great, more power to the stockpilers and too bad for those who didn’t get to take advantage of a good deal. I consider myself, here I go again, stepping out on a limb by confessing a big secret, I am a member of that last group I LOVE finding a great deal. I LOVE stockpiling. In my mind, the early bird gets the proverbial worm. I think if I can work hard enough and get out at the right time, and I’m entitled to the fruits of my labor, the hard work scanning store flyers and ads, and the matching up of forms and coupons Etc
My Stockpile Greed Was Born
It all started when I was introduced by my dearest friend Amanda to one of her favorite stores. What started out as a measly trip to the store one Friday has blossomed into a monthly (or as often as possible) search for the ultimate savings. My stockpile greed was born that day! You see this store doubles coupons to a dollar only on Fridays. I quickly learned that any item I wanted that was close to $2, if I could find a good coupon for $1 off, was going to cost me mere pennies. I know, I know, this is not a new concept. Well, it was for me. With my store coupon policy in hand, I set out to do some major shopping! I went from having one extra roll of toilet paper in my cabinet (if I was lucky) to have 20 tubes of toothpaste, scads of shampoo, too much deodorant, more toothbrushes than my dentist office, and who knows how many boxes of Band-Aids. My stockpile greed was being fueled!
My best spree at the store occurred about 3 months ago with double coupons I was able to get about $60 worth of stuff for $0.97. I had read about these sprees from various articles online with envy until I got the opportunity to have one myself. This is not another story about how I got all this stuff for free it’s about how to turn your greed into something far more rewarding than a neatly stacked display on the kitchen counter of your latest haul.
This past holiday season I found myself stressed out. I would bet any amount of money that you were too. I was baking, shopping, spending. I was sick. Sick as a dog. I threw a birthday party and had 25 four-year-olds in my yard. I organize a tots Toys for Tots drive for my employer (not a small task). I also found myself reading the local newspaper and shaking my head at the “Christmas Families” section, that the newspaper sponsors. Every morning I would read about a different case. Many families had sick children. Many had lost parents recently, leaving children in foster care, or being bounced around from relative to relative. Some were just trying to rebuild their lives after a recent tragedy. All of them were in desperate need of other people’s generosity.
The Newspaper Families
Needless to stay in the hustle and bustle of the month I forgot about the newspaper families. I bought other toys for the Toys for Tots Drive. I provided gift baskets for the migrant families in a nearby County, sponsored by my daughter’s school. I donated my daughter’s old used and forgotten toys to other places. I forgot about my stockpile. Finally on the last day of the Christmas Families, as always the newspaper ran an article about how short they fell. They mentioned that there wasn’t nearly enough money donated to help most of the families with even one month’s rent. They mentioned that they needed X number of heaters and I only got half of that amount. Of course, there were toys for kids, plenty of dolls and trucks. But there were other people in the newspaper besides children. The man who ran the article mentioned that they really wanted to give every family in the newspaper a new toothbrush and some new underwear. And at that point with the dwindling donations, they could not.
On that Thursday after reading that article I suddenly felt selfish. I felt greedy. Here I was griping about how stressed out I have been, when I suddenly remembered that I was so blessed, and so very fortunate to even be even sitting inside my own home with my two beautiful children. I had a million other things to do that day. All selfish things. I needed to get my nails done. I needed to go buy more Christmas decorations because we just didn’t have enough red and green sparkly stuff in the house. I needed to go buy more baking supplies because there weren’t enough cookies in the house. I needed to wrap gifts for my daughter, who had enough junk to make any kid jealous. But this Thursday, I instead went up to the bathroom cabinet and took most of my stockpile out.
Hero of The Day?
I plopped most of my stockpile into a few bags and dragged them down the stairs. I was starting to feel a little less greedy…. but a little more selfish! I was feeling great about giving this stuff away. I was feeling good about myself. I like feeling good about myself. It made me happy. I was thinking about myself, and how I would have loved to see the faces of the “Christmas Families” people when I brought all of this stuff in. I guess at the time, I figured they would just throw their hands up in the air at the sight of my goodies and Shout blessings at me. I had visions of the newspaper interviewing me on what a great fine citizen I was by donating what was definitely hundreds of dollars worth of good stuff! I was feeling very selfish indeed. All that attention I would get! And I love attention. Who doesn’t?
Well needless to say my visions of people falling down to kiss my feet disappeared quickly when I walk to to the drop site with my bags. No one cheered me. Hardly anyone noticed me. The volunteers took my bags, cordially thank me and asked me if I would like a receipt. I declined. No need to take this off on taxes. Suddenly I felt humbled. I walked out of the drop site, past the empty shelves, past the bags of donated clothes laying scattered on the floor. My smile was nowhere to be found. Where was the news camera waiting to interview me? Where was my Fanfare? Where was all the attention I had so long for?
I went from feeling humbled to feeling rotten to feel guilty! Guilty that maybe I hadn’t given enough. Guilty that I actually felt selfish and greedy about not giving all my stockpile. Then I walk out the door. I held the door for an older man with an armload of boxes. He looked like he had just come in from a morning of hunting and was wearing a camouflage outfit and big black boots. He had a long, bushy beard and round spectacle glasses. He smiled at me and said Merry Christmas and bless you. I wished him a joyous holiday and went on my way.
Okay, I gotta admit that one little comment of his was enough for me. I was proud that I had donated my stuff. Who needs 25 tubes of Listerine toothpaste anyway? Who needs all that deodorant anyway? And what on Earth was I thinking about when I bought all those bottles of white rain shampoo for less than a nickel each? Someone needs all that stuff. Someone whose face I will never see. Someone whose child I will never meet. Someone whose mother may be ill. They needed it.
So I am back to my stockpiling greedy self now. I plan on being more greedy and selfish in my quest to rebuild my stockpile. I will stockpile until I run out of storage. I will stockpile until no one needs my goodies. So I guess that means I will stockpile always! Do you consider yourself to have stockpile greed? Do you know someone who you would label as having stockpile greed & selfishness?