Friday, September 10, 2010

Thursday's trials

Two things happened to me yesterday. One I'm going to call a bittersweet event - for lack of a better word - and the other, an unfortunate occurrence.

You must know that since the day I got my first cell phone at sixteen or so, it's always been the freebie. One or two I remember fondly. My last one, however, was wallowing in anguish as the flippy part of this flip phone wasn't working very well (maybe if I hadn't dropped it so many times...). My contract was up and it was a decision between two phones - another freebie or the very cute $50. I didn't care where the freebie was made - heck, it's FREE, so Chinese-made is okay. I made the mistake of asking my mom, who has the earlier model, where the $50 phone was made.

"Mexico," (or some other, none m.i.c. location) she said confidently.

I had bothered Giedre several times to spill the location of her phone - she DOES have the same model I was interested in - but no luck. So I ordered the phone. It arrived yesterday, in all of its shiny, new phone glory. Charcoal and silver, with a flash of orange zest, this baby was purty! I decide to peruse the box (BAD idea!), curious where the baby was made (was it Mexico, Korea, or Taiwan? I think it was Taiwan), when I notice a tiny set of black words set against the brilliant white background - PHONE MADE IN CHINA.

It's starting to feel like this is the story of my life. Or at least my year... :D

Long story short, I ended up keeping the phone. Why, you may ask? Well, it would've cost me at least $40 to return the gadget. Darn those overpriced re-stocking fees! I couldn't stand to lose so much money over a stupid mistake. So the Chinese phone stays. And yes, I shelled $50 out to China. But if I had returned it, I would've had to fork over almost the same amount! Does that even make sense?

Drew and I have been doing our very best these past nine months to stay true to our resolution, even if it means walking back into the grocery store to return that $5 steel wool sponge (Drew) or facing sarcasm from a clerk because of the m.i.c. pact (unknown). But at the end of the day, we also have to be logical about this embargo and it does NOT make sense to pay almost the same amount for the privilege of returning a phone as it does to keep it. ARGH.

* * *

My unfortunate occurrence was a fall yesterday. And no just any 'ol fall, but the embarrassing, I-feel-like-I'm-five-years-old again sort. Drew and I had left for a run. I was animatedly talking to him about who-knows-what, when BAM! My right sneaker hits a piece of sidewalk that's rudely jutting up in front of me and I go flying. I have that split-second thought - while I'm flying - that I'm going to smash into pavement. Then I do.

So there I am, crying like a baby while blood streams down my elbow. I'm peering at my knee through watery eyes and see white. Drew sees it too. Running back to the apartment, he appears minutes later in his car and proceed to lug out the orange medical box (I say "medical box" because this sucker is way too large and stocked to be considered your ordinary first aid kit). Drew and I had both thought it was bone we were looking at, but thankfully, it turned out to be skin. Lots of skin. My oh-so-graceful fall apparently tore open several layers of skin right down to the spongy, bottom layer. Ugh.

I'm hoping you, dear reader, have a stronger stomach than I do. Once I was home, injured leg in the tub, I must admit I almost passed out. I was riding high on the waves of adrenaline - which causes numbness, nausea, and scanty hearing, and it is NOT fun. "Woozy" would be a very cute way to describe it and only accurate if the subject is an adorable, fuzzy puppy.

Please note the two subjects of this blog post below.


  1. Eeek. Words cannot describe the sorrow in my heart for your unfortunate and wretched tumble. So sorry!!! Here's hoping your knee heals super quick. :(

    Also in regards to your embargo cave, there's a famous quote, not sure who by, who says, "Moderation in all things, including moderation."


    This is a economics term that you should know by now. There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch. Free is not free, period. Even if you're not the one shelling out the money for a product, someone else is. So either way the original owner/manufacturer of the product is still getting paid, why do they care where the money comes from?

    This means that even buying a used/second hand China product, the product was originally from China and they were paid for it. Even if you didn't directly pay them for it, you still had a demand for the item.

    Another example: if you buy, lets say, a TV from Sony that is made in mexico, Sony is still making profit off that item that they may be using for research on a radio that is being made in China... On larger products or larger companies, there's no way to track your dollar to know for sure that it's not making its way to China.

    Gifts can even be grouped in this category. If someone buy something because you want it, they're just the middle man. You wanted it and China was paid because of you. You're not giving them money directly, but indirectly.

    I hope you're getting my point. You had all the best intentions when you decided to do this resolution, and every idea is good on paper, but it's just not plausible here in the real world. There is no way to stop China, yes I agree what they are doing is horrible to their people, etc... But something must be done on a larger scale for anything to happen. And honestly, as long as the large companies (Wal-Mart, Sony, GM, etc...) are still buying from China, every dollar that you or anyone doesn't spend on a China made product, these companies are still giving China millions. China is not going to be stopped any time soon.