You’re a cheap one, Mr. Grinch

Photo by Corey Balazowich,

Some of you reading this just dropped a nice amount of ducats on a recent graduate.

You made sure to place a little cash in that greeting card to let him or her know how much you care. Caring seems to cost a lot of money in U.S. America. We spend dough on everything and every occasion.

I’m fighting back against this waste of money, useless spending. Here is my list of those times and moments we think we need to shower with greenbacks, but we really don’t.

10. Funerals

At this occasion, the guest of honor is not aware of anything happening. Thousands of dollars are spent on a ceremony for somebody who is dead. Love ones gather to remember the person. This could be done in a more affordable way and without a drawn-out ceremony.

9. Christmas

This meaningful holiday to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ has transformed into a bill. Now when the Christmas season approaches, people worry about spending money and getting the perfect gift. Instead of thinking about the spiritual aspect of the holiday, we focus on Black Friday, Cyber Monday and getting the best deal for objects that have a limited shelf life.

8. Easter

Once again a holiday for the Lord has gone commercial. While Christmas has the symbol of St. Nick, Easter has a big fluffy bunny. Easter is no longer about Christ’s sacrifice to save mankind. Instead Easter has become about egg hunts, huge baskets, new church clothes and spring savings.

7. Graduations

The vision of your young scholar advancing into adulthood is captured perfectly in the cap and gown. But I’ve noticed several of the children who graduate seem to be disinterested in the pomp and circumstances. They appear to be daydreaming and suffering through all the speeches, songs and reminiscing. If you are invited to one of these ceremonies, you most show up with a gift or card laced with money.

Just give the children their diplomas and allow the families to throw them a party.

6. Birthday party

First rule of birthday parties: Never throw your own. Allow others who love you to do that. If you organize your own birthday party, the guests who attend owe you nothing but their presence. Don’t use your birth as an excuse to get money and gifts. If someone likes you enough, they will hook you up for being born.

5. Anything that ends in “shower”

Baby and bridal … I’m looking at you two primarily. Just like a birthday party, these are excuses to load up on gifts and have a lame gathering. People waste hundreds of dollars and feel obligated once they receive an invitation. Allow people to be generous for your life milestone from their own desires. Remember you decided to get married or have a baby.

4. Housewarming party

An apartment is not a house. You don’t get to throw one of these parties. If you are moving into a home, you will need some things to get started. That is not your cue to throw a party, expecting guests to walk into your new house with a coffee maker, couch, bathroom set, bedroom sheets, etc.

3. Prom

Prom is practice for a wedding day. It is centered on a dress, makeup, a grand entrance and a pointless occasion. Parents throw countless amounts of money at this event just for their children to get out of the prom as soon as possible. They can’t wait to hang out in the city with a loose curfew. They can’t wait to pretend to be adults by just hanging out super late. Plus, if the children wanted to get together, dance to their music and take photos, it’s called the school parking lot.

2. Valentine’s Day

Ok, men have far less money spent on them for Feb. 14. But this is not coming from a jealous place. Love is an action and should be displayed at any time the heart desires. Any day that obligates your love and places an dollar value on it is pure evil. Several men have endured anger because their gifts fell short of expectations. This day is purely commercial and a way to boost sales post-Christmas in the dead of winter.

1. Weddings

Was there any doubt the No. 1 occasion we waste money on would be the nuptials? Getting married is one thing, but having a wedding is a super waste of cash. You spend hundreds of dollars for a rented tuxedo that must be returned in 24 hours. Let’s not forget the dress that can hit the five figures and will only be worn once in a lifetime. Flowers, cakes, candy, decorations, reception, ceremony, candles and so much more are all used to set up a fairy-tale day. Then you pay somebody to have a camera to collect evidence of you wasting money. You’ll look back at the pictures of the thousands of dollars down the drain. Holding onto the memories as you worry about paying your car payment for the month saying, “Man, I could surely use that money right now.”

THOMAS SELLERS JR. is the editor of The Millington Star. Contact him at (901) 433-9138 or