The Art and Math of Procrastination


Having recently been introduced to the Procrastinators RUS program, I have been enticed by some of their money saving bylaws. Behold.

Never put off until tomorrow what you can actually never do and get away with.

Now, I had never truly contemplated such a possibility until I was faced with cleaning the (paint) marker stains out of Man Cub’s brand new (first time he wore them) khakis. *Sigh* Guess who had no turpentine… I decided not to get the paint out at all. Ah, well. They made spiffy shorts for when it is not 12 degrees. (Summer savings: $18)

If you can wait five minutes, try waiting an hour.

English: This is a photo of Squirrel (Sciurus ...

Image via Wikipedia

This gem has managed to save me money. How many times are you standing transfixed by a glittery, shiny, color-splashed display designed to liberate you from the contents of your wallet?

Now, for those of you who think I squeak when I walk, far from the opposite could not be truer. I have been known to part with copious amounts of money. However, putting off a big purchase (or even an Ooooo, I want that! one) can save you a bundle.

You can more easily resist the adverts you have seen so many times you feel like you know the ad agent’s children’s middle names. Give yourself a moment to be… SQUIRREL!

There are fewer things on my to-do list if I move them to tomorrow.


With the notable exception of bill-paying, this is true. Avoid the late fees by paying bills today. Save the big money by putting purchases off until the jar has the full purchase price (with tax).

When you fall for the Act NOW and SAVE propaganda, what the fine print fails to convey is: The model on sale requires the purchase of additional items which will far exceed your Right This Minute Before They Are Gone Forever savings.

This is so much more important.

Now, if you are not someone who has planned for the holiday season to avoid stress from unexpected expenses, you will likely feel the need to scurry about, paying too much in fear of time expiring. Just stop. And put it off.

Instead of trying to meet the demand for buying your spouse’s boss’ secretary’s stepdaughter’s boyfriend a gift, make them all a paper plate full of cookies. After the holidays are over you can rack up on those last minute, *!&% that is expensive on Christmas Eve, really cool, I-don’t-have-to-know-if-you-like-this-sort-of-thing, pre-wrapped gifts for a song.

The time you spend in the kitchen with Mate or your offspring is a present to yourself. And don’t you deserve it?


Don’t miss Alex’ Dummies Guide to Understanding Advertising Lingo!


What is the thing you are most proud to have put off and never done? Have you saved a boatload by not buying right now? (Consider the lemons you would have had with the “brand new [and improved]” whatever it was.)


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  1. Buying a cell phone. Why would I need one of those cancer-causing things? Land lines work just fine “:))
    Red, you are now an official lifetime member of Procrastinators R US. You’re an incredibly valuable addition to our membership. You know how to do math,– and I like cookies…

  2. How about this one? During a rather hairy point in my marriage, many long years and gray hairs ago, I put off getting a divorce. Put it off long enough that we made it through the rough patch (mostly because we were both too stubborn to leave the kids or be the one to walk away). I’ve actually found that, in the absense of such things as abuse, this works well in a lot of relationship issues. Give it time, put it off, wait and see, along with a huge dose of prayer, usually moves things in the right direction:) I need an invite to this Procrastinators R US group, lol, but I’d probably lose it long before I actually got around to joining.

    • What an EXCELLENT example of Procrastination in action! (I daresay it may have saved a nickel or 60 [thousand].)

      How about instead of an invitation, we just pre-approve your membership status? 😉 Red.

  3. It’s funny, but I have never fallen prey to advertising, I find it incredibly stupid and it actually makes me angry, if I let it. I have seen through this stuff from day one. My suspicions were confirmed when I had an in-depth discussion with someone who used to consult with advertising firms. The stuff he told about how they put together ads would horrify you.

    Yes, I have spent before, especially during Christmas. But, once you have been homeless, ads and material stuff mean little. For the first Christmas ever I will not have bought one thing for anyone, and it’s okay. All the people involved still love me.

    Angela makes an interesting point. I have been separated for 6 1/2 years without papers or divorce. Our child not only turned 18, but 20 amidst all this. Recently, we started talking again. Who knows?

    • I had to literally laugh at my ex in the center aisle of a grocery. I had asked him to fetch a pound of andouille. He came back momentarily with two. To the raised eyebrow, he beamed, “They are two for five dollars!”

      Eyebrow still in place, “Then the one I need is two fifty. Put it back.” When he returned, I told him, “You are a marketer’s dream.” Still is to this day.

      I hope you find out and it is good for you both. Red.

  4. love this – and the comments are great! very good post!

  5. Is that why he is the ex? LOL. He does get points for knowing what andouille is. I once sent a man to the store for parsnips (it was written down) and he came back with parsley. Not someone I dated though.

    Back on topic: I realized I never answered your question, but perhaps I did inadvertently,.

    • No, no credit for andouille, we are both Louisiana natives…I a gourmet and he a gourmand…hence the ex. ROFL! And mayhap, you have indeed. Parsnips to parsley, eh? Sheesh. Makes you wonder if he had ever seen a recipe made. Or maybe his idea of “fixing dinner” involves a drive up window. Hmmm. Definitely not good date material. Red.

  6. Love the kitchen idea and yep I deserve it. Well, maybe not really but I can say I do at least until Santa delivers my lump of coal

  7. Thanks for the link Ann Marie and the inspiration:) The men in question above could be like my daughter. Send her with a list, written or oral, and she will get one thing on the list. Sheesh! She singles out one word and that’s all she hears:)

  8. Sometimes it pays to hold your tongue….moments filled with a transient temper..can be white washed away. Just slam the door and take a walk..return without your anger and there…you you go all ready for the next thing that makes you mad!!! LOL

    • Welcome, Liv! So good to see you! I have been a lifelong advocate of taking a walk. Good for you in so many ways…except when the neighbors hear what you are screaming at the top of your lungs mumbling under your breath. Red.

  9. Said I was going to move back to New York but decided not because I love it down here to much. I enjoy the people that I have gotten to know. I also enjoy the work that I do, But most of all I love my family that live down here also. Good as always Red.

  1. Procrastination Saves Relationships « doyoumeanwhatiknow

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