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- I’m happy to spend $5 on an Americano, even if I made a fairly modest income.
- Getting out of my small apartment keeps me sane, and I love supporting local businesses.
- I prioritize spending my coffee on other things, like new clothes or regular hairstyles.
As a freelance writer with a fairly modest income, I’m certainly not someone who “should” regularly spend nearly $5 on an Americano, which often costs me these days after taxes and tip (at least in Seattle, where he lives). However, I do, and frankly feel justified.
While the rising costs sometimes leave me dumbfounded when I pull out my card, knowing full well how much I can save by brewing all my drinks myself—anywhere between $500 and $1,000 a year, by one estimate—I know it eventually, post Its a cafe worth it for me.
You can’t put a price on the mind
Personal finance experts often talk about eating out as a clearly trivial expense—the first place to be cut into the budget. This advice misses an essential aspect of reality for those of us who spend most of our days at home, constantly rubbing their elbows with our relationships or roommates: Preparing every meal or drink at home means never running away from them. This is especially true for those of us in small spaces, like the basement apartment I share with my wife and two children, and can somehow lead to feelings of claustrophobia and isolation.
I know I’ve been going a long time without leaving the house because my anxiety is slowly starting to rise, like a pipe kettle whistling on the stove. The smallest irritations, such as a person sniffing or coughing, feel unbearable. That’s when I know it’s time to leave. This mug is $5 in a public place that pays the brain. Almost immediately upon entering a small, crowded café, the noise of music, commerce, and hearing snippets of conversation from strangers melt away my frustration.
I love supporting local business
In our small culture, coffeehouses are public spheres that enhance society – country clubs for the masses, so to speak.
There are practical benefits to traditional businesses, as foot traffic is associated with fewer crime. According to the account of Harvard Business Review, an open retail company that provides “more than $30,000 a year in social benefit just in terms of prevented thefts.” Mostly, though, I just enjoy living in a world where local shops and the people who run them can thrive.
Many of the service industry workers I know have activities outside of work such as music, art, writing, studying, being active – these are activities that enhance the culture of the place, and these are the people I want to be able to continue living in my country. The city, especially as it became more interested in high-income workers.
There is an intimate relationship in sharing drinks
Some of my best memories from college include sitting around cafes to “study” with my friends, meditating philosophically in a way that only gullible young people can. When my husband and I first started dating, we would often post at a coffee shop to “spend alone time together.” And when I had a baby last year, taking her to coffee shops to meet other parents made me feel like I was back in a way that few things could do.
In the United States, latching on milk (especially, God forbid, PSL) is often joked about as an essential—the domain of wealthy white women. But on a global and historical level, the practice of sitting around a table with friends sipping hot drinks has deep roots in many cultures.
In East Africa, where coffee originated, it is often taken for granted that enjoying the drink is best Collectively, festive, over a long period of time. The café culture of Vienna, made famous by intellectuals and artists such as Freud and Trotsky, is such an important national symbol that it is included in the UNESCO List of Intangible Cultural Heritage. The organization referred to coffee shops as private places “where time and space are consumed, but only coffee is on the bill”. (Or as one of my friends pointed out, the price of a drink is like a parking ticket.)
I give it priority over other expenses
There is a lot I don’t buy. I recently got my first haircut in a year. I didn’t buy new jeans or shoes at that time either. While I enjoy having more of these things, giving them up doesn’t reduce my happiness as much as not leaving my house on a particular work day.
In my previous job as a managing partner at financial dietWe’ve talked a lot about creating a budget based on an individual’s unique preferences, not some model that says “X amount at restaurants, Y amount for clothes”. It instilled in me the philosophy that in the end, it doesn’t matter if something is “too much” as long as it fits my budget and makes me happy. It turns out that paying an exorbitant amount for an Americano makes me happy.
#spend #year #coffee