Sunday, November 29, 2009

W: The Winnipeg Shopper.

I have a question for all the Winnipeggers out there:

When is the best time to buy a Christmas tree (and all the lights and decorations that go with it?!)

Now, I pose the same question to everybody else in the world...

Chances are, if you are from Winnipeg your answer was "After Christmas, when you can get it at 50% (or more) off!" Everyone else probably answered; "Now", or "Next week" or something like that...

Yesterday I was talking to a friend of mine who is from Vancouver. -- She moved here a couple of years ago to go to school. -- I was saying something along the lines of; "I really want a Christmas tree, but this is the like the stupidest time to buy one..."

She just stared at me blankly.

It took me a second, but I realized what I said; that I was going to put off buying, and enjoying a Christmas tree for a whole year, just so I could get it at a discounted rate.

Cheap? Or, Winnipeg-saavy?

It's no secret that Winnipeggers love a good deal. (Doesn't everybody?) But we, the Winnipeg consumer, will go to extreme lengths to pay the smallest amount possible for our products.

We will drive two-and-a-half hours to Grand Forks to get cheaper clothes, furniture, and just about anything else we can get our hands on. We will scavenge clearance racks, looking for "treasure", and then brag to friends and strangers alike about how little we paid for something. We will opt out of buying something, even if we really want or need it, just to hold out for an inevitable markdown.

I remember going to Calgary a couple of years ago, and somebody commented on my jacket.

Them: "Ohhh, I really like your jacket!"

ME: "Oh thanks!" (Pause) "I got it for seven dollars at Old Navy!"

Them: No verbal reaction, just a sort of look like "uh, okay..."

ME: A look of sheer pride; "That's right, seven dollars!"

It didn't dawn on me that I did this until a couple people commented on various items of clothes that I wore, and I proudly told them how little I had paid for every-single-piece, every single time! (I think I finally noticed that I did this, because of the lack of reaction that I got from those unknowing Calgarians. I wasn't used of those awkward stares.)

"You like my outfit?! -- I got the whole thing; shoes, pants, shirt, jacket, for fifteen bucks...FIFTEEN BUCKS!!"

(This statement has no effect on people living outside the Manitoba borders, but if you were to say it to a Winnipegger, the reaction would be one of absolute excitement, followed by the question of "Where?!")

Going back to the Christmas tree, I am not sure what I will do about not having one. (Damnit, I should have checked out the eight million garage sales that were going on in the north end this year...Ugh. -- That's a whole other blog post though!) It breaks my "economical" little heart to think that I would pay full price for something that is going to be marked down substantially in a month or so...


What to do, what to do.


  1. Hey I hear you!! I'd love sales, and I resent paying full price for things!! It's almost like an addiiction with me.... as soon as I see a clearance sign or a sale sign in a store, I'm imediately drawn to the rack the sign is hanging over. I've bought thins just because they've been such a great price, even when I didn't need the stuff. I think I still have Christmas wrapping paper from the 90's in this house! Hey do you have any friends or relatives that woiuld appreciate help putting their tree up. Sometimes older people get lazy to put their stuff up, and have soooo much stuff that you might be able to score a great looking tree and decorations. It might be worth a try. :))

  2. Hahaha Shel you make me laugh out loud everytime, always entertaining reading your posts.

    This is SO true, but sadly, I am the opposite... I need to put myself on a budget. Here I am, a poor as dirt student, buying clothes I cannot afford. $200 purse, no prob. (ugh!) Screw the bargain- if I want something, I need it NOW lol, no waiting till it goes on sale! it's an addiction really.. confessions of a shopaholic??

    So, I hope you're next post will be about how you finally bought a tree! happy hunting!!

  3. I wanna a xmas tree too1 but I blew my budget buying art for $15 (worth $600) at a silent auction.

  4. I say just go ahead and buy an economical yet pretty tree that gets you in the spirit of Xmas! Just don't go overboard.

  5. Shelley if you want a tree, I might have a pink one??? I have to check with someone, but it comes pre-lit! If you're interested tweet me :P