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This is a question Tightwads

There's saving money, and there's being tight: saving money at the expense of other people, or simply for the miserly hell of it.

Tell us about measures that go beyond simple belt tightening into the realms of Mr Scrooge.

(, Thu 23 Oct 2008, 13:58)
Pages: Latest, 18, 17, 16, 15, 14, 13, ... 1

This question is now closed.

I very nearly hit someone today
T'were a woman, a very smartly dressed, well spoken woman. I work in a store and we have certain policies about refunds that are perfectly reasonable and any long standing customer of the store will know about.

Basically, if its been reduced by more than 50% as a sale item then you can only exchange it, unless you pay on a store card.

Anyway this snotty bitch had bought a shirt, with cash, that had gone down by 70% to £8 and wanted to bring it back. Answer, NO. Exchange only madam.

HER: No, I would like my money back.

ME: Im afraid I can't do that, it is our policy.........stated on back of reciept......signs at tills.......no.

HER: I am not leaving this store until I get my money back.

ME: No one will give you your money back. We're not allowed.

HER: I think you'll find it is the law. You are perfoming an illegal act by not refunding me my money.

ME: (I think you'll find you can fuck off) Its not illegal

HER (all shouty): MY husband is a lawyer! I shall be coming back with him and he will prove to you that what you are doing is illegal.

ME: If its illegal then how come hundreds of stores across the country are allowed to practice it?

HER: pfft. *Gone* - With shirt

All she needed to do was swallow her pride and admit her wrongness! But she wouldnt, all for the sake of £8 in the back of her pocket.

I think thats tight
(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 16:41, 11 replies)
not so much cheap
as bizarre.

Once when I was little my grandma bought me a dressing gown for Christmas. Imagine my joy as I opened that.

A proper present wouldn't have been any more expensive. She didn't buy my clothes normally so she wasn't saving that way. She wasn't senile. I'm assuming it wasn't a veiled insult, since I was four or so.

Were boys given a coming-of-age dressing gown in the 1940s? Did they want nothing more than a dressing gown just like the one Basil Rathbone wore? If I proved I could take care of it would I get a Playboy Bunny for my birthday?

It was as mysterious as it was shit.
(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 16:40, 3 replies)
Why some people might be tightwads.
One thing, that many of us are capable of doing, and that's taking things for granted. One thing that is taken for granted is generosity.

For example, you may have a relative that always buys you a £100 christmas present, then one year you get one thats worth £10. You'd be a bit brassed off. Yes you'd be thinking "Aww maybe they cant afford that this year" but deep down there would be a little bit of disapointment and resentment.

I'm the victim of people expecting my generosity too. Ive spoke about this girl before but when we got together, she quickly moved in. We split up a year ago, and guess what.. she's still here! Rent Free! Theres a lot more to it than just that, and I do like having her around so its not bothering me too much. But she knows I never ask her for anything, and as a result, she never offers. She quite happily stay here until something better comes along.

Sadly this isnt the first time this has happened either. Oh and I've totally stopped lending money to anyone, as its never paid back and they just keep coming back again and again. I end up having to make some excuse up then made to feel guilty.

Seriously you give an inch to some people and they take a mile. If I was to be a total tight arse then people wouldnt expect things from me and they wouldnt want to ask favours.

Truely though, I think its down to balance.
(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 16:34, 3 replies)
I've refrained from buying a house.

Happy? I nearly shit myself with laughter every day.
(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 16:25, 4 replies)
Cheapwad sister
I once commented that I would like a camera for my birthday. When my sister signed up for the Littlewood's catalogue sometime later, She chose for her 'Amazing _free_ gift' the camera, which she then gave to me for my birthday. It was the cheapest piece of plastic imaginable, and it went straight in the bin.

On a similar camera-birthday related theme (but not qotw), a few years later I commented that I wanted a _decent_ camera sometime. My parents recommended that since I had a job, I should buy one myself, which I did. For my birthday that year they gave me ... a camera, which was the second cheapest piece of plastic imaginable.
Fuckheads, the lot of them.
(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 16:19, Reply)
My old dad's boss
Absolutely minted. Big house in the country, a garage filled with vintage cars, you know the drill.

Invited my mum and dad, plus little me (aged maybe about 8) out to their sprawling estate for tea.

After small talk in the sitting room, we were beckoned into their vast banqueting hall.

What were we served?

Jam fucking sandwiches. Also egg.

I kid you not. Strawberry to be precise.
(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 16:14, 12 replies)
She fell with a saddening thump
As she stood over the railings, the school yard, looked empty. The singing, the teasing washed over her like a putrid river.
Her bendy legs arched around the gate. The rusty old padlock, while not the most recent technology, certainly did its job and prevented her from falling into the swirling rapids.
"Here comes Paul Proudfoot!" they shouted, as the fledgling teacher lumbered from the old red doors and towards Mary. She was far to busy to even notice him looming in her shadow as she leaped from the walls edge and grasped at the old wire fence, she regained her poise and realised that she had actually done what none of the others had managed. She had crossed the river.
"I'm peeing! I'm peeing!" she yelled as she stepped to and fro, hoisting her apparel into the air.
Shocked the matron watched as she micturated at will. Holding for a moment then, with added gusto firing an arch of golden sunshine all over the petrified others.
"...and I’ll tell you what else!" she boomed, "I'm shitting!, I'm shitting!" she croaked, as she forced a nidorous budgie out of her puckered onion and grabbed it with her enormous dick skinners.
"Take that society!" she wailed, and threw clump after fetid clump of contaminated she-sludge at child and teacher alike.
"Mary Poppins come down from there this instant!" bellowed Mr Arkwright, a man who's frame was intimidating enough not to be trifled with.
"What on earth is the meaning of this you wretched urchin?" his weary face had turned an eloquent shade of violet.
"I shall do as I please!" she warned "I have gone quiet mad as a result of Mr Proudfoot's incessant and often brutal sodomy of myself and my loyal friends" she revealed.
"We know not of what which you do refer too Mary, honest we don't!" shouted all the other children in unison.
“Really?” she queried.
“Honest we don’t” they replied immediately.
"Then perhaps… it was a most peculiar dream, a reoccurring dream, a video taped dream, an oily dream. . . the buggery. the tears, all in my head? Yes! that's it, all in my head!" Mary smiled her million dollar grin and smudged a fresh line of lipstick across her bloated face. Mascara ran from each weepy peeper and into her now gaping maw.
"Chim chimney...chim chimney chim chim cheroo" she wailed...
She fell to her knees and emptied the remains of her bowels into her muddy stockings.
"Buuuurrt? BBBUUURRT!!?"
But Burt didn't come, no one ever came.
Mary's eye's bulged and snapped from side to side, her mouth contorted and her throat began to swell.
She manically gestured to the others for help as the beginning of a behemoth of feces poured from her flapping gullet and onto her hands in front of her.
She wailed at the sky a stream of feculence slopping clump by clump into her cupped hands which mangled the turds like fresh bread.
...or I may have misread the question.
(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 16:14, 10 replies)
Not just tight, but forgery too!
A guy I used to work with was so tight, he'd print out his own bus tickets.

Yup, in works time he'd photoshop a previous day saver ticket, print on the colour laser, and then cut it to size. He got away with it for months as well! He refused to print copies off for other people.

He was a total arse in other respects too, but thought he was really clever with that one. I just thought it was a bit wrong to be honest.
(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 16:10, Reply)
My friend told me this story once....
My friend is one of these people who tells you every grimacing detail of his life no matter how explicit or humiliating the detail is..

This is one story he told me.

He's had a skin full of ale and ended up back at a girls house, he's fair game, gets her into bed but she informs him it's the time of the month and the most he is gonna get is a hand job. Anyway, she gives the old soldier a bit of a tug, before he decides he is pissed off with the false promises. So he storms out of bed and gets a taxi home.

He gets home, still bladdered from the night out and decides his little altercation has left him still feeling a bit horny. So he puts a porno on the tv and proceeds to wank him self dry into a piece of toilet tissue.

He reckons he hadn't had a wank for a while and he said there was a good old clump of man fat in the tissue (i know, he's very graphic)

Anyway, he goes to sleep.......

Next day, he wakes up, and like the morning after any decent night out, you need a beer shit to sort you out. So he get's up, and takes a shit, he then realises that he has no toilet paper or anything of that description in is house. The only object that he could conceivably wipe his arse on was the tissue filled with his own spunk. Guess what ladies and gents.....Yep, he did it, he wiped his arse with the tissue.

After telling me the story I said to him, what if someone came into your house that night and murdered you. There would have been a murder trial with proper autopsies taking place and your poor mother would have to listen to evidence stating samples of her sons seaman were found in his own anus.

Classic - the most genius form of recycling toilet paper, wanking and shitting, two of life's finer pleasures
(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 15:31, 9 replies)
Drunken squandering
After a night out, it's typical for one to have their memory skip a few hours before coming to their senses to discover themselves armed with only an empty wallet and the remnants of a kebab as you balance a traffic cone on your head.

But not me. After hitting 'the wall' as my fellow students call it - the point where you know that anymore drink will equal hospitalisation and civilly stop for a takeaway - I become tighter than the Virgin Mary's arsehole when it comes to my pursestrings.

My most remembered moneysaving moment was refusing to spend a tenner on a taxi back home across Birmingham after a night out and decided the train would be the cheaper option. Sounds fair enough, but this was at 3am during a weatherstorm. The first train was at 6.50am. Lo and behold, I crawled through New Street station in the middle of the night to boast about the £8.20 I had saved to a bunch of equally-pissed Brummies.

It didn't help that I was dressed in a full priest uniform. Having a man of the cloth storm up to you at 3am while you wait for a train screaming 'EIGHT POUNDS TWENTY! THAT'S A FULL MEAL AT MANZILS!' (student curry-pad and simply awesome place) before falling asleep/passing in the middle of a platform hereby secured my title as 'raving pisshead' among my colleagues.
(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 15:18, 3 replies)
Pea pod wine
Found a recipe for this "drink" once which promised unheard of drinking pleasures.

After spending 3 months taking over the freezer with vegetable cast-offs I finally had sufficient to make the wine.

Three months later I take the stuff to a party (I'm have something of a reputation amoung my friends for bringing home-brewed liquids to parties) and try it. For the first time.

This stuff tastes even worse than it sounds. Even Graeme wouldn't touch it (and he drank 3 litres of my minging cola wine).

Tightwad? I can't bring myself to waste all that lovely alcohol and throw the last bottle of it away. I'm still trying to work out what to do with it.

Suggestions please.
(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 14:44, 13 replies)
Snapped not an hour ago at the Dumfries branch of Lidl

Don't all rush now, will you?
(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 14:36, 12 replies)
The case of the falling forklift!
Just remembered this!

My cousin buys 2nd hand forklifts from China/Japan/Whereever, imports them here in Macedonia, has them completely refurbished (you'd think they're new, even after you've had a decent look) and sells them on. Pretty good work, he makes a fair bit of dosh.

Anyway, a few years ago, there was some sort of industry expo in town, and he had a bunch of forklifts on display, and what's even better, he managed to sell them all during the expo.

One of the forklifts was purchased by a guy who was apparently not comfortable with paying an extra 50 euros for having the forklift delivered to a specific location on a lorry specifically equipped for this task. No, he decided that after spending roughly 8000 euros on a ginormous forklift, spending another 50 to have it delivered was too much.

So, he finds some really, really old pickup truck and has the forklift loaded on top. For a few seconds he felt really smug. Until the suspension on one side of the truck completely collapsed, the entire truck tipped over, and the forklift quite ceremoniously fell over a car that was parked next to the truck. I can imagine that the damage to the forklift, the POS truck that he hired, and the car that the forklift fell onto was substantially more than the price of delivery.

(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 14:23, 1 reply)
How to Live for Free (ft. Fred Flinstone)
Society tells us we have to pay for everything. This is bollocks, and I'd encourage you to pay for nothing. Not theivery, now, but plain and simple freedom. I can't be arsed posting a longer message than this is already going to be, so in essence, here's a list teaching you how to live for free.

Squat. Squats are not derelict buildings, they are simply buildings housed by persons who do not own or hold a formal lease for the building. Britain has the greatest squatting laws in the world - use them before our political party (singular, because New Labour are just Tories wearing make-up) snatches them away.
Not all squatters are punks or crackheads, some of them are just extremely savvy economical entrepreneurs. The best of them live right next door to you; they have a car and all the keys to their house, and without owning it or paying rent, they can legally occupy it. Here's the wikipedia article on squatting. Have you any excuse to still be paying your rent or mortgage, really?

Of course, there are other things to worry about when living in a squat. You'd need to consider that the house is just a shell: yhere's no water or electricity. That you're officially classed as homeless if you wanted to get a job. That you can't receive post. You can't have a phone line. You can't plant flowers in the garden. You can't inform the police if someone is messing around on your property. Oh, wait, what's that Fred Flinstone?

These are all urban myths, and aren't remotely true?! Hey, thanks! Yabba-dabba-doooo!

Water & Plumbing:
Get a squat. Failing that, use any number of public bathrooms in Tesco or any place like that for giving yourself a quick scrub - if you're sly and manage to keep your clothes clean - which is a whole other problem - nobody's going to throw you out. If you put enough forethought into it, you can get away with anything. Public drinking fountains are great to drink from and store bottles of water from. Alternatively, unless a public toilet specifically states to not drink the water there, drink away.

I'm assuming you're not naked. Getting clothes isn't what's important here, what is important is cleaning the ones you have. You know that water you got from the taps? You know the soap they have there? Stick some of that in a bottle. A tiny bit will go a long way if you really put your back into scrubbing it. Of course, keeping things looking sparkly new isn't important, what is important is keeing them looking clean. Ironing is unneeded for most modern clothes but you'll always find something that does need it. Now, you can always sneak into a hotel and use the trouser press in an open room - I promise, the first time you get away with it, you'll feel like James Bond. After that you tend to become disillusioned with the whole Hotel security thing. We're still assuming you're not in a squat though. Being in one and having an iron tends to sort out most of your problems.


Public ashtrays, whether they're on the top of a bin or mounted on a wall. Learn to love them. Sure, you'll get ash on your hands, but pick up those butts and drop as many of them them in a plastic bag as you can. You can roll up the tobacco left in them with blank newspaper, which isn't as pleasant as cigarette paper but it burns near as well, and you can reuse the butts if you really want, though I'd recommend shelling out a handful of pennies on filters.

We've all seen The Real Hustle, and we all know what proposition bets are. I'm sure we've all tried them at one time or another, and general wasted an hour or two with them. Again, with a bit of forethought though, you can get pissed every night you want if you just put some time in to think up some generally clever propositions. The greatest thing about these are that they're such a pop-culture phenomenon that most people will instictively accept the bet. With an arsenal of these up your sleeves, and a familiarity with other propositions to defend yourself against, as well as what will be called an arsehole attitude to taking and not giving, then you'll be drinking for free for a long time to come. This part is mostly directed at men. Women have a much easier time getting free drinks - and if you're one of the women who doesn't get free drinks and takes offence at this comment, then you're a fool.

Work, you can work for the big issue, you can get a proper job, you can sign up at a temp agency and get day work. You can beg too, if you really want. Getting money for doing nothing isn't easy, though you need look no further than Heat magazine to find out the secret of this trade.

Library. Often, too, second hand book shops will give books away that just aren't selling. Don't be afraid to ask, Bernard Black isn't real (note: Bernard Black may be real), and most of them are happy to give away a tattered old copy of some Jim Thompson or Camus or Greene book, just make sure you know your authors and the kind of book you like to read. You won't find any Dan Brown there, and for a good reason too.

Nights out:
All hail the BBC, and the live recordings are far better than the shit that ends up being broadcast.

Libraries, again. Alternatively, if you have a laptop, you'll be able to get into somebody's wireless. You're probably stealing internet already.

I'd write more but I've got bored. If you've anything to add, feel free to do it in the comments, I'll update as I can. Also, do read the comments for more debate.

Edit1: Some people have made objections to the above, and I wouldn't want to preach, so please don't take my word as the be-all-and-end-all, I'm sure you wouldn't anyway, but here we go:

Leeching off society.

If everyone lived like that, there would be no society for you to ponce off. No houses to squat in, no hotels to sneak into, no public bathrooms or water fountains, no libraries or BBC recordings or pubs where you can scrounge a free drink. All of these things exist because they're funded by taxes and consumerism - which you claim to eschew.

I'm all for recycling and using things that would otherwise go to waste, even freeganism for those with such low standards they're happy to eat gone-off food out of a bin. Good for them. But what you're describing is leeching off society.

Of course, no society could sustain a population living off of each other's castaways. However, you, complainer, have decided not to do this. There will always be a majority in your favour, a majority that thinks paying for things affords security. Leeching implies sucking the life from society, as if freegans and squatters had their hands in your pockets, when in actuality, we're stealing out of rubbish bins, and, again, living in unused houses. If we work, taxes are being paid, if we don't work then we're a whole lot less of a drain on society than underclass (not working class, I do specify) scum. Burberry'd up and claiming as much benefit as they can - and yet squatters get the bad reputation. This whole attitude, though, "leeching" on society... we ARE society, as are the under class, the working class, the middle class, the upper class. This is what society is made of. If you're upset at being taxed blame the taxman living in his mansion, not the kid with a broken leg getting free care from the NHS.

Now, I'm not squatting personally, to explain my views on this, which aren't universal. I don't want to preach, because there's nothing more annoying than a loud hippy. But I do believe it boils down to a choice: either you accept your own disenfranchisement (i.e. lack of impact on the larger society, nullified right to vote because, let's face it, any fucking tool can vote, etc.) and decide that your guilt over the shortcomings of other people in our society is no excuse to not profit from the aforementioned shortcomings, knowing, as you do, that you are solely responsible for yourself, OR, you decide that your mortgage/job isn't that bad, you can get by on your wages, and your standard of living would be much increased than it would if you were living in a squat and eating free. The standard of living thing is debateable: a lot of squats are furnished, and everyone knows that milk has a Display date and a Best By date. Nothing is stopping you keeping your job.

Of course everyone can't do it, everyone can't be the Prime Minister, everyone can't be a doctor. But if you appreciate how small and irrelative John Bull living in Hackney is, then I'm sure you'll understand, objectively, how small and irrelative you are to society at large. Your decisions will not bring about the apocalypse, they affect YOU, not society. You have no responsbility for the wellfare of others beyond what the tax-takers demand. Mind you, I have a world of bones to pick with people who are proud of being taxpayers, but another time maybe. I'll try and keep to the topic as much as possible, eh? Also this is getting interactive, like a blog post. Nice discussion all the same, and my apologies too for any ineloquence on my part and clumsy repetition of a statement in order to convery some sort of grand point.

All of this sounds like far more effort than just having a job and buying stuff. Not that I'm knocking it, mind you; I'm just very lazy.

It's about saving money, and that does require some effort. However, if I was making enough money from my job to buy stuff without going through all of this, I wouldn't bother. But one does tend to get caught up in this delightful romantic view of themselves as a poor rascal, naked but for his quick wits and lack of high courtesy, as opposed to common courtesy, and scruples.

I have never heard such a load of tripe...
Apologies in advance for length, but this has really annoyed me.

You are advocating the blatant abuse of the system, not to mention the fact you are also advicating running what is, in effect, a Short Con racket in order to gain free drinks.

Yes, there are such things as squatters rights, but they were designed mainly to protect tenant workers' whose landlords could turf them our without notice merely by changing the terms of their lease, etc. They weren't designed to let a bunch of theiving dog-on-a-string dole scroungers take up residence in someone's property just because it is vacant whilst they are away on a long holiday (this has been documented more than once). Houses may stand empty, but there could be a reason for that - the owner might be trying to save up the money to renovate it, or get planning permission to do work on the property. But that's ok, because your "squatter" can just kick the door in and make themselves at home at the expense of the owner and/or the taxpayer. All the time, causing untold damage to a property, bringing an area down and attracting the usual detritus of smackheads and crack-whores that go along with the average "squat". Yes, there may be pleasant hard-working squatters, but there might also be likeable fascists - both are rare as hens' teeth and the odds are you're going to encounter one of the other sort.

It's this attitude of freeloading that gave us the New Age Traveller - or tree-hugging veggie-pikeys, if you read the Daily Mail - who are happy to sign on, or use NHS doctors, but don't want to pay tax, rent, or National Insurance. Or work. They know their "rights" to the letter and milk the state for all they can, before they move on to the next pitch and let the local residents pay to clean up the damage, rubbish and effluent they have left behind. But that's ok, because they are likely to be middle-class homeowners in a nice area, so fuck 'em, right?

In this country, under the laws of the Magna Carta, you are entitled to renounce your citizenship and become a Free Man of Great Britain - you aren't liable for tax, no law other than Thou Shalt Not Steal and Thou Shalt Not Kill apply and you are allowed to claim, I believe, 2 acres of land for you to live and graze animals on. Of course, you'll need a passport to go to work and you won't be able to use the NHS, call the police if you are robbed, or send your kids to state school, but if you don't want to be part of society, then I suggest that this is the only morally correct route to take. And yes, you can legally grow Marijuana on your land at that point.

The fact is that stealing supplies form public washrooms increases the expenditure on such facilities and, in effect, means they are more likely to be closed down if budgets need to be trimmed. If you squat and steal utilities, all that happens is that other law-abiding citizens are forced to pay increased bills to subsidies your existence. You become, effectively, no more than a parasite, bleeding resources out of a society, whilst mocking those who are providing the things you are stealing for their stupidity. I honestly don't know whether to pity you for your naivety, or loathe you for your arrogance on the subject.

Yes, a free night at the BBC is fine and enjoyable, as is asking if the tatty old books that are about to be binned could come your way instead - that's fine as it doesn't hurt anyone, neither does eating leftovers out of a bin if that's what you so desire - if you want to catch typhoid, salmonella, hepatitis, or god knows what from second-hand food, you go right ahead.

There is no "romance" to such an existence - if you're able to support yourself via work, then you're a prick if you freeload in such a way, if you are truly destitute then Social Services and the rest of the State you seem to dislike so much will provide housing, an income and a route to gainful employment. If you really want to live outside of society, then become a tramp. Don't leech and expect those of us who end up paying the cost, either directly or indirectly, to applaud you for it.

Oh, and before you respond, think on this - my Uncle served 25 years in the military - Marines, Special Boat Service and other branches. He fought in Aden, spent years in the jungle of Belize, saw action all over the world and gave everything for his country. It broke his mind and once he de-mobbed he lived as a wild man on the Surrey Downs, because he couldn't be around people - he'd seen and done things that no-one should be forced to. He never signed on, never squatted, did odd jobs for cash and once every three months walked to Portsmouth to get medical treatment and pick up his military pension from the naval base. He truly lived by his wits (building shelter in the woods, trapping rabbits for food, etc) and, aside from turning up noisily drunk after his mothers' funeral, never harmed anyone. When he died, even the Police turned out in dress uniform to honour a man who gave everything he could for his country. He had nothing, yet he had his pride and the respect of the entire town. Compare that story with that of your drink-scamming, house-stealing, work-dodging schemes and then ask yourself why anyone would condone your suggestions.

(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 14:18, 20 replies)
Boot fair
A mate and I went along to a boot fair one summer to sell some old things and generate some money.

He had an old board game that his kids had grown out of. It was in pretty good condition and if bought new would have cost a few quid.

A woman came up and spent a while examining it, asking him questions and generally looking very keen.

Finally they got down to the price. It was fairly late in the day so he was eager to be rid of it and her.

"50p" he said, which we both thought was pretty much a bargain.

The woman looked horrified at such an extortionate price, said something like "I'm not paying that sort of money", put it down and walked off, leaving us both mystified.
(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 13:52, 1 reply)
Not just tight, but a thieving scumbag shite as well
A while back, I had the joy of working with, well, lets call him A. Original, I know.

He was a salesman, and he lived up to the old stereotypes - poor paperwork, denying that he had offered what he had offered to the customer to get the deal, combined with making sure that the customer in question collected their car on his day off so that some other poor sod was lumped with a rightly annoyed customer wanting to know where his free mats and mudflaps had gone.

He also had a habit of stealing bits off other cars, to keep his profit ratio high. So if he sold a car with a missing parcel shelf/book pack/nav CD or similar, rather than just do the right thing and order the part, he'd nick one off another car. The poor sod who sold that vehicle, of course, lost money.

He was also renowned for extreme tightness - aside from creative commission claims to keep his income looking lower than actual to keep the CSA off his back, by juggling deals between months, allegedly his household would shower every two days to keep the bills down. Wouldn't pay for t'internet at home, so watched porn at work on Pornotube, on one of the PCs that didn't have a content blocker. He also wouldn't pay for a mobile phone, specifically so that he couldn't be called on his day off and politely asked "what the thundering arse was he doing promising customer X a free whatever". Someone eventually gave him a handset for nowt (which he would only charge at work) but he then refused to let anyone know his number because if he was phoned it would use electricity.

Many, many more aspects of his general stinginess, light fingeredness and Lochness could be described, but suffice to say he was one person who virtually everyone he met wanted to hit repeatedly in the face with a shovel. Everyone.

How he kept his job no-one could work out, except that on paper his results were good. The costs of covering his sorry arse were on a different report, y'see.

However, things came to a head. We had a Barnados or Gt.Ormond Street collection box on reception, where you bunged a quid in, and got a packet of sweeties. All very nice, except that the sweeties were going down faster than the tin was filling up. Strangely enough, once the receptionist started locking them away when she went home, this stopped.

And then the final act, one that guarantees this fetid, Stella swilling, faux football hooligan a place on my personal list of those who should be the recipient of a crossbow bolt through the genitals.

The Poppies. I am, perhaps, a little fanatical over my Poppy at this time of year. I go through quite a few (seatbelts), and make a point of renewing mine every couple of days, emptying the back pocket of change at the time, so I donate a few quid. I've also done some fundraising myself, but that's a personal thing, not an attempt to portray myself as some sort of super-charitable person.

Hanyway, this pond-dweller went one level beyond the pikey Bung-It-In-The-Drawer-For-Next-Year low level tightfistedness. He just waited until the receptionist had her back turned, and stole his.

Utter, utter scum.

The episode when I caught him in the act was slightly 'noisy'. He didn't like me much after that.
(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 13:01, 3 replies)
Not really on topic, but I'll post this here anyway.
I've gotten a couple of people asking me about how the story of Emmett's house ended. (If you have no idea what I'm talking about, the original story is here. Follow-up is here.) The story is a deeply personal one, but what the hell- I shared a lot of deeply personal stuff when I first wrote about it. So here it goes:

I had finally decided that I should go back and rescue his dishes and such for Goodwill, as I had already taken everything that seemed to be salvageable that I could use, and found the door to be shut and locked. Apparently my comings and goings had been noticed by someone. Taking it any further would have been breaking and entering, and I had no desire to be arrested.

That, however, was not the end of the story.

About a week later I started dreaming about Emmett. In my dreams he was short and wore his horn rimmed glasses, and was very upset about something. Then one night I dreamed that I was back in his house and walking through and he was on his bed, covered completely like you would see in a TV show where they show a corpse. As I approached he sat up and whipped off the covering and started yelling at me, and I woke up with my pulse trip hammering.

I knew what I had to do at that point.

A couple of nights later I went out at about midnight so that I wouldn't be seen, parked a quarter mile away, then walked to his house with my pack of things. I walked up the driveway, and could feel him inside that house, still angry and hurting. I put on a necktie that had been his and walked around to the back of the house, then walked back to the front and asked him to come out to the porch. I felt him there with me as I did so. He was angry that I had not kept my promise to take out the rest of his stuff.

I stood there for a time talking to him, getting him to realize that it was really just all stuff, that I at least would always remember him and would honor him. I had a small cauldron with me and lit some charcoal in it, then added some sage, some rue and a few other things as we spoke, and then I took out a small plastic box that had his medals in it (he had been part of a band of some sort, possibly in the Army) and a bracelet with his name engraved on it, and used a trowel to bury it under a flowering tree in his yard. I then told him that he could keep an eye on me if he wished, but that it was time to let go. I could feel his anger ebbing as I spoke to him, and I called for someone to guide him home.

The best way to describe it is that I felt something slowly draining away, that he started to feel peace and acceptance. I told him that I still have his glasses and that I keep them in my workshop so he can keep an eye on me if he likes, and he seemed to like that. Then he left.

I have been by the house since, and it's now just another empty building. He's no longer in there. But when I'm out in my workshop he's there with me, and I swear I've seen someone looking through the glasses that are now sitting on my tool cabinet.

I think he's finally at peace.
(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 12:35, 21 replies)
I'm a bit of a tightwad myself. There's nothing wrong with prudence.
But when I read a recipe that involves making a stock with carrots and celery, and then tells you to throw the carrot and celery away at the end - well, the very thought just horrifies me. Waste perfectly good food just to make the water taste carroty? Outrageous!
(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 12:32, 6 replies)
I had a friend who used to steal wireless internet
He would drive around at night looking for unprotected networks, spending far more on petrol than it would cost to have wireless broadband at home. Silly fucker.
(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 12:27, 6 replies)
The nuns at my school
were very cheap too. At break time one of them would stand in the front door of the toilets with the toilet paper in her hand, rationing it to the girls who wanted to use the toilet.

She'd give you ONE piece of toilet paper, and if you asked for more, she'd say "why do you need more paper for such a little hole?"
(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 12:17, 14 replies)
Tomato Ketchup
I have an Australian friend whose family used to eek out the last dregs of the tomato ketchup by adding milk.

(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 11:52, 14 replies)
Scrooge indeed!
Once Daddy bought a villa that only had two pools!
(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 11:10, Reply)
Tipping #2
On a recent date the 'gentleman' in question suggested splitting the bill. No problem with that, would have suggested it myself. However he did leave me to sort out the whole of the tip, having calculated his half to the penny.

Another friend of mine, who I shall call Kermit, also does this on a regular basis, but I'm used to that - he's so tight he squeaks when he walks.

But on a first (and, unsurprisingly, last) date?
(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 10:53, 35 replies)
Sitting in a math class one day
We're learning about fiscal prudency, when all of a sudden the teacher shrieks, exclaiming something hit her.

I only just saw out of the corner of my eye a young man quickly hiding out of sight a straw and paper rolled into wet, tight wads.
(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 10:50, Reply)
I was in Turkey a few years back. In Fethiye fish market you could (then) buy your choice of fish from a stall and take it to one of the restaurants there. For the equivalent of £2.50 they would cook it and serve it to you, along with fresh salad and bread. After a very nice meal with excellent service I paid up and left a £1.50 tip.

A friend of mine, who was living there on a boat at the time, argued that this was far too much and in the end I just walked off. Half an hour later we all met up again and she presented me with my tip, which she had taken back.

£1.50 FFS!
(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 10:46, 3 replies)
Tight Aunt
My Aunt Joan has always been careful with the pennies. I remember her berating me as a child for using 'too many' of her tissues to blow my nose when I had a cold. My mum, bless her, stepped in and said' Oh for God's sake Joan, it's only bloody tissues. Here, I'll replace them if that's what you want'. My mum then took some Kleenex from her handbag and put them on the table. Joan's reply? 'Those are only 2-ply. Mine are 3-ply'.
(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 10:46, Reply)
On a Buffet tip
Was in a decent chinese buffet in Glasgow the other weekk and in my direct line of sight was a very slim, dyed blonde, trilby on the table, type woman.

I IMMEDIATELY had her down as an Eastern European sex worker. She was shovelling away a plate of scran as if she had been locked in a rape room for a week.

She hadn't finished chewing her last mouthful when she was back up, surveying the MSG goodies. It was at this point her cheap leapord print high heels betrayed her occupation........ whore.

She went on to plow through 3 plates, sizable and hearty, every one of them. Never stopping to fucking breathe. Im sure she has had practise of her airways being blocked.
Next thing she is cramming a fucking wedge of gat-oh intay a wee bowl which was on a saucer that she then piled up with fruit salad.

Then another round of cake and fruit.....

And another, this time with a chicken and sweetcorn soup side....????

And amazingly, yet another wedge of gat-oh, ramming the cunt right into this wee bowl, dousing it in cream AND mair fruit salad....now bear in mind she is sitting right next to the cake bit, so she is up fer mair fruit in between gulps. Gobbling mandarins like limp cocks.

Im stunned.

She puts her trilby on and grabs a fucking Mr Kipling apple pie and heads for the door, I finish also and follow her, hoping to have her ethnicity revealed...She pays her bill, but she never spoke, but i
did see that she never even had a drink...WTF. All that food and not even a bloody soda water. Her gangmaster must have given her the exact amount and told her to eat enough for a week. She did.

She was a pro, in every sense of the word....
(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 10:28, 9 replies)
I am so tight that I refuse to pay the ransom money for my wife until I know they have run up the same cost to the kidnappers. I take costings out for light, heating (I assume its heated anyway as she was chained to a radiator on the picture they sent me) rent and food and stump up the cash after a good year or so.

(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 9:47, 2 replies)
I was once barged out of the way in a Charity shop
by a woman who demanded her money back on a £1.50 dress because "it didn't suit her".
(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 9:44, 7 replies)
Charity Muggers Tip
If you get accosted by a charity mugger and they begin to tell you all these facts about people dying/not having enough to eat/wanting a sex change operation then just reply with the following line:

'I would but my (insert relative here) has (insert random disease here) and I tend to give my money to that, in fact I'm (insert random charity activity here) next month'

This tends to work pretty well, although admittedly I only thought of this after I used it when I was 'got' and my my mum was diagnosed with PBC and I was running the Manchester 10Km for the charity that helps with this...

(, Wed 29 Oct 2008, 9:37, 15 replies)

This question is now closed.

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