Transplanted Life
Sunday, August 14, 2005
Tax-free day is crazy. Seriously, when you think about it, it's crazy. If the state thinks not having sales tax for one weekend is going to make a significant enough amount of difference to business's bottom lines that they'll make what they lose back up in income taxes, why are they even collecting sales tax to begin with? Although when you get right down to it, any increase in business between Mass residents is probably good for the economy, just to have the money acting.

But the enthusiastic people who go out to shop because of it - what's wrong with us? Is an effective 4.76% discount really a big deal if there's no other sale going on? I was with Kate yesterday, and she spent $250 on shoes, and she'd been waiting for this weekend. She saved $12.50, which, sure, got her a movie ticket and popcorn, but is it worth not having the shoes for the past month? I don't know. I can't say I didn't get swept in, since I did buy some stuff I might not otherwise have bought, but it was total herd mentality - I was shopping with Kate and Jen, and they kept suggesting things, and you can only say "no, I don't really need this" so many times before you start to think you may be hurting their feelings.

Oh, and by the way - you know how at the movie theater, the sign says that concession prices include all applicable taxes and stuff? Popcorn wasn't any cheaper this weekend. I bet the theater is just pocketing the difference.

I was wiped out at the end of the day, though - hot, humid weather doesn't combine well with lugging shopping bags from one end of town to the other very well. The air-conditioned theater at the end of the day was very nice indeed, although it just meant that the heat hit us like a wall when we came out. We were too tired to do anything afterward.

And then there was a whole other day of it today, although I can't really talk about that other than, yeah, I did get good and soaked during the flash thunderstorm because I never have an umbrella. I will say, though, that the expedition I was dragged along today made good sense, what would it being stuff that's expensive and doesn't go on sale when you need it to. I'd say more, but it's sort of not my news to break.

Is it just me, or are you really becoming a woman. I mean in mind and spirit as well as the physical stuff. The blog seems slightly... different lately... the style and content more reflective of a woman's voice than a man's.
Well, what's "a woman's vioce"? I won't deny that I probably write differently now than I did two years ago, but I don't know if it's as much that what I write is more characteristically female as much as I haven't had a whole lot of big life-changing events in a while.

Sure, I'm different than I was two years ago, but I think if you eavesdropped on a parallel universe where you could read Martin Hartle's blog about his new friends and girlfriends in Seattle, the substance wouldn't be that much different - more consumer electronics, less clothes talk, sure, but I'd still be liking and disliking the same movies, following the Red Sox, and saying pretty much the same things about them.
True. I don't really think that gender has much to do with a person's tastes and interests in things.

That "woman's voice" thing - it's very hard to put into words... it's just more of a gut-feeling type of thing. How sometimes you can listen to a person and hear the things they're not telling you.

Anyhow, it's just another thought for you to ponder. ;-)
The problem there is also that the only person who knew Michelle (the brother) seems sorta clueless about her, so we don't know if Marti's starting to act like Michelle. And I suspect the male/female thing isn't as big a difference as personality types are. Otherwise the "Battle of the Sexes" would be a much more serious thing.

The theater may not be charging tax on everything anyway; some places, the state doesn't tax food, or certain types of food.

Tax-free day is really more for big purchases (though, my God, $250 shoes?) anyway, like cars or computers.
$250 on shoes. She bought more than two. Girl needs a shoe tree, whereas I am somewhat mortified to see five pairs lined up in my closet (including flip-flops).

And popcorn and the like get taxed in Massachusetts - if you have someone throw peanuts at you in Fenway, his button shows the breakdown of how much is "cost" and how much is "tax"; and the sign at the theater says "includes all taxes". Loews also used to show the prices pre-tax before GCC moved in and made their displays tax-inclusive.
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