2006, A Credit Card Statement in Review
The year is drawing to a close, my Christmas Letter to the Internet seems to be lost in the mail but that doesn't mean I can't begin the parade of annual inspection of my life. This year it is starting with a new gimmick. A listing and description of some of the more life influencing purchases I've made over the past calendar year. Enjoy.
February 2 - Pentax OptioS60 - 9.58
There I am, heart pumping blood through my body as I push kilograms above my head and back down again when 'Butterfly', my phone supplied ring tone of the day, flutters over the sound of clanking weights and workout enhancing breakbeats. I pause the Deekline & Wizard Vocal Mix of Armand Van Helden's 'My My My' and answer Chow, who has spent the last ten minutes bartering my new camera for me after my unsuccessful attempt to snipe an eBay auction for an older model the night before. Adrenaline pumping through me from the workout and probably still from the auction shenanigans the evening before, I agree to purchasing this sleek, modern new camera and Chow brings it around later that afternoon. It's important because I used it to take almost every single photo of the month this year, as well as later that day capturing a video of me excitedly hitting two three-pointers on Chow, left handed only, with my right hand down my pants.
February 14 - Fluffy Dog - .95
Valentines Day isn't just about love and giving, it's about crafting the best possible super romance plan possible. It cost me twenty bucks for this beanbag filled blue dog and another five dollars when I told Tegan that I would take her to the arcade and win her the toy of her choice by earning tickets on the basketball shooting game. Sure, it seemed Valentines Day was ruined when I only won enough tickets for a packet of Gobstoppers and meekly handed them to her. However once I was back to my car and pulled off my "I'm so sorry I ruined Valentines Day and couldn't win you that toy... oh wait!" and pulled from the backseat the cutest fucking dog you've ever seen I knew I'd just uppercutted Valentines Day in the pants. Making a pancake in the shape of a love heart on my first attempt later that night pretty much sealed my reputation as a romantic badass.
February 23 - Shirt and Tie - .95
If there is one example of an outlet mall providing value in the most extreme way possible, it is the shirt and tie I got combined for less than twenty bucks the week before I started my office job. The shirt only retailed for about and the tie would be another ten, but with post Christmas sales occurring I managed to get a bargain that is not only my easiest shirt to iron (cotton/polyester blend) but also probably the lowest cost per wears shirt I own.
March 28 - Arrested Development Season 2 -
One day during work I was bummed out because work was boring and I'd just wasted my lunch break eating possibly the worst baked potato I'd ever seen. So I cheered myself up by buying the second series of possibly the funniest TV series I've ever seen.
April 13 - Christmas Beer Hunt Carton - .95
You couldn't put a price on the fun I had over the Easter break this year, a time of much relaxation and accomplishment. The whole experience would retail for over three grand however the wholesale cost is just impossible to determine. One cost though would be the price of the carton of Toohey's Extra Dry I purchased on the way home from work on the Thursday afternoon before Easter began. Each of those beers would later be hidden throughout the plants and gardens of Josh's parent's backyard before night fell and the first official Easter Beer hunt began.
April 27 – Tent - 0
Any joy I felt from bartering the owners of Boots Camping store on South Road down twenty bucks for my "6 man" (ie. one Brad plus girlfriend) tent was quickly soured when the remaining portion of the afternoon was spent assembling it and then trying to return it to whence it came. By the end of this experience I could have been convinced the tent carry bag still had a hymen and I was surprised at the lack of blood covering my lawn. To make matters worse the tent-requiring camping trip that weekend was cancelled and the tents only purpose for the rest of the year has been to reduce the already limited storage capacity of my room to a further minimum.
April 28 - www.phocumentary.com - .75
Despite trying to simultaneously work two full time jobs and complete a degree, I decided that my vision for phocumentary.com was indeed a great one. A dream of phocumentaries and user generated revenue that would set me up for retirement was too much to resists. I registered the domain. It's almost time to renew it and I still haven't set up nameservers yet.
May 9 - Ipod Nano (White) - 4.83
I don't know what translates my true, total love and appreciation of my Mother more; the fact that I spent this much on her Mothers Day gift or the fact that seven months later I'm still averaging ten hours a month helping her use it.
May 12 - The Abs Diet Book -
The Abs Diet, by David Zinczenko was a life changing book that I've basically supported all my nutritional rants on when discussing weight loss to other people since purchasing it. This book is the sole reason that I have not gained any weight since my back injury in July which has prevented me from exercising for almost six months. It also provided me with two months of beautiful, genuine drive for my weight training before that injury. It has also cost me hundreds of dollars in almonds, roast turkey, yogurt, fruit, brazil nuts and wholemeal pasta.
May 20 – Blender - 9.95
Thank God I talked the salesperson at Myer down eleven dollars on my Blender, my best breakfast friend. It's not just because I've made over 200 smoothies in the months past May, but it also meant that I could use that money for the purchasing of frozen berries and all natural peanut butter.
June 20 - Moisturiser and Facial Scrub -
Cold winter air, a few open pores and a massive disposable income sent me to Myer on my lunch break to search for moisturiser. There I naively listened to skin care advice from a Eurasian with possibly the biggest dried out zit on his face I have ever seen. Despite the blemish I was still talked into purchasing Lab Series products, the moisturiser (which I loved) costing over fifty dollars and lasting almost three months. The facial scrub (which I loved) cost under forty and lasted almost five months. This would appear again in the review if I could find these products or that Eurasian again. L'Oreal for Men hasn't been cutting it since October.
July 27 – Modern Competitive Analysis by Shannon Oster -
This was my second favourite book purchase of the year. For someone who has never read economics nor purchased textbooks this was almost not put-downable. It was only my genetic disposition to complete procrastination that has left parts of this book unread. It turns the uneducated into business strategy geniuses and was the fuel for every one of my entertainment spurred academic debates in each Economics of Business and Business Strategy tutorials. The fact that it was written in the 80's does make its title somewhat misleading though.
August 25 – Lee Hipster Jeans - .95
1 Cup of Omo washing powder, .30, October 29.
September 10 - 2006 AFL Elimination Final 2 ticket - .60
Watching the Bulldogs come from behind to thrash Collingwood at my first AFL final during my first game at the MCG during my trip to Melbourne with my brother was one of the greatest and most fulfilling spectacles of my life. It almost had me feeling some emotions.
September 17 – Buscopan - .70
I don't know how much the sausages provided at Scrivens BBQ on a sunny spring afternoon in September cost, but the eight hours of recurring vomiting and stomach pain drove me to the pharmacy the next day, wherein I discovered the miracle drug Buscopan. It relieves the stomach from cramping and spasms after a night of excessive vomiting. Coincidently it also does a pretty good number on a hangover. This was the source of much prosperity as a Spring populated with nights of drinking followed by days of working began. Hangovers changed from crippling to mere context for the next night of drinking.
October 13 - CT Scan - 0
It costs this much to get told that your discs are degenerative and can't support any impact that travels down your spine. The radiation also means you're impotent for the next two months, which is not exactly cost effective but is a good mental bonus. While waiting for my scan the fire alarm went off in the medical centre and I got to help old ladies leave the building. No real advantage to being impotent when Beatrice's, whose chair you just carried so she could sit in the shade while she waited for the fire department, had a hysterectomy the year before you were born.
December 8 – Hawaiian Shirt -
I spun towards my pocket as the low-fidelity chords of SexyBack jammed out my phone speaker. On the other end of the line was my Mother, who was standing in a Gold Coast marketplace gazing over a rack of the bright, garish Hawaiian shirts.
I told her to buy me "the most colourful, ugly one possible". The vivid red, hibiscus garden covered tropical shirt that I then received has been the source of a lot of entertainment over the rest of the year. It's the reason that every girl at the pub on Thursday night refers to me as "that Hawaiian shirt guy". What can I say? I figured it would look good with my white cotton pants.
December 22 – Derby Day DVD Board Game - .95
"The reason I bought this gift is because Erryn loves horses, Matt loves watching DVDs and Mark loves spending time with his kids."
I was the Christmas Pimp of gift giving this year.