Ugh. I’m a small town girl by nature, so large cities bother me on principle. But LA is by far the one that grates on my nerves the most. Everything here is really fake, and the prices astound me. Gas is up 35 cents over the national average. Hair color that I usually buy for $5.00 is $8.50 here. Even McDonald’s suffers, as some items that are on the dollar menu at home are $1.25 here.
Don’t get me started on the housing costs.
In a city where your dollar doesn’t go as far, it’s even more important to look into ways to be frugal. However, in LA, it’s even harder to do so. The compulsion to compare yourself to everyone else is even harder to escape. I considered not bringing my purse because it’s from Target, and not at all trendy, and I wondered if I would feel awkward carrying it around. I’ve already been to two apartments with large (in one case, VERY large) HD TV sets. This place gets into your head.
But I’ve just got to maintain my cool. People with H3s aren’t to be admired – they’re to be shunned! (I hate consumer-grade Hummers.) And that Lexus is probably leased. In fact, although there are plenty of people out here with the funds to buy these big ticket items outright, there are many more people out here who are digging themselves into a hole trying to keep up with those Super-Jonses. And while I may be lured to do the same, I have put other priorities first.
In the end, you can’t tell the difference between a leased car and a purchased car, and you can’t tell the difference between a TV paid for with credit cards and one paid for with cash. So, to ease my own mind, I’ve decided to assume that they’re all financed, just because it makes me feel better about not having them.
Materialistic consumerism is overrated. I used to live in LA. I hated it too. Everyone is an aspiring actress or actor (or both) lol
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As a frugal fashionista working at Shoestring Magazine out of Boston, I thought readers of this article may be interested in the 2010 Frugal Festival happening this Saturday, June 19 in North Hollywood!
Green is the new black, and swapping is the new shopping! The Swapaholics know best, having been recently featured for their “swappertise” by USA Today, The Boston Globe, US News & World Report and all the network TV stations. And they’re coming to LA to host their first West Coast clothing swap THIS SATURDAY, June 19th, with Julia Scott of BargainBabe.com at the North Hollywood Performing Arts Center. Tickets start at just $5 at Goldstar.com (http://www.goldstar.com/events/north-hollywood-ca/frugal-festival-summer-swap.html?ref=bargainbabe)!
The Swapaholics and Bargain Babe are hosting a MASSIVE swap at the North Hollywood Performing Arts Center on Saturday (June 19th) — women’s clothes, men’s clothes, kids clothes, books, CDs, DVDs, and home decor. There will be a killer DJ & killer raffle prizes. DJ Andie Cassette will be dropping beats & we’ll have some sick swag & raffle prizes (spa gift certificates, iPods) to give away to lucky attendees. The best part? Tickets are only $5-$15 bucks, and our 25 VIP ticket-holders ($15 each) will walk away with a reusable swap bag FULL of swag from our sponsors.
I just got into clothing swaps, and I am absolutely in love. They’re a great way to update your wardrobe and score some great designer duds without the excessive LA prices 🙂
Jenny Gore says
Swapping is a great idea, or there are loads of second hand items available (as the rich wouldn’t wear anything twice?)!
I don’t think there’s anywhere in the UK with quite the mentality described above but cities do price hike!