Running in the Rain and Shopping.

Happy Monday!  Despite the gloom outside, I feel fabulous.  I manged a great 10-mile run on Saturday in 1 hour and 35 minutes – a new high for me!  And did I mention that I started at 6 a.m. and it was raining the entire time?  Thankfully it was not raining when I first looked outside at 5 a.m., because I probably would have crawled back in bed.  But it was sprinkling by the time I got started and almost pouring by the time I hit my stride at about 4 miles.  But with my hat and water-resistant jacket, I didn’t even realize it was raining until I saw it in the car headlights.  I’m sure they all thought I was nuts, but it was fun!!

Sunday morning, this is what we awoke to… for some reason she loves sleeping under our curtains.

Jasmin hiding in the curtains.

Jasmin hiding in the curtains.

Later Sunday morning, I was looking through a magazine and came across a letter to the editor from a woman who really liked a silk top they had featured but couldn’t afford the $500 price tag.  (Who can??)  I primarly use my monthly fashion maganizes for tips on how to re-think the pieces that are already in my bulging closet and scope out the trends for the season that I’ll be able to find at deep discounts in a few months.  I even keep a little book with cut-outs of outfits I like so I can pull it out for reference or inspiration.  On the rare ocassion that I see something in a magazine that I really like and won’t break the bank, it’s always sold out and I just end up frustrated.

So now I’m in deep thought on this subject… if such a miniscule portion of our society can afford such pricey threads, why do those items dominate popular fashion magazines?  After doing a little Google and Wikipedia research, it seems that  households earning more than $167,000 (based on 2005 Census data) are considered to be in the top 5%.  OK, so let’s do the math… Take out 28% in taxes plus another $400 a month for family health, dental, and prescription coverage.  Then deduct another 10% for 401k or other retirement investment (the minimum you should be saving), and you’re down to about $8,500 per month.  Now take out mortgage, utilities, vehicle expenses, food, insurances, and all those other things we “need” on a monthly basis and you’re probably down to around $2,000 – $3,000 per month, if you’re one of the very lucky few.  Now why in the world would you spend this extra cash on one outfit or worse, one piece of an outfit??  So basically, less than 1% of our society fits into this category and can actually afford these $500 blouses, $3,000 coats, $2,000 bags, and don’t forget the $600 to $14,000 Manolos!!  ShoesGood grief.  And the rest of us 99% are focusing on the 1-page “Under $100” section, although even here I often scoff at their suggestions.  $90 for a shirt???  We have gone insane.  My husband and I do pretty well for ourselves, but I still like the sale racks.  Why spend more money than you have to?

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