You’re a man, busy doing things like biting the caps off of beer bottles and serenading ladies on the street with the ancient Hymn of the Cat Call. With a hectic schedule like that, how can you possibly be bothered with shopping for essential man-stuff? Okay but what if your mom is busy? Right, exactly. That is the premise of Men’s online subscription services. Dedicated to finding the easiest way for you to man it up, they take any and all pesky work on your part out of the equation. So what kinds of things are readily available from your fingertips to your doorstep?
Razors – The internet is VERY concerned with making sure men are shaving. If you haven’t already created an artisan straight razor out of a vintage bike tire and are still going the cartridge route, there options for you. Number one, because it is the easiest to remember, is Dollar Shave Club, which offers three choices of blades in $1, $3 and $9 a month options. Once a month, DSC sends you the razors, and has upgrade options to include a shaving butter, which makes sense for synergy, and pre-moistened peppermint scented toilet paper called One Wipe Charlies, which makes no sense and sort of freaks me out when I think about the men who need that on a monthly subscription.
Knock-off brands always make me laugh. I’m not sure why they’re so amusing. I guess it’s because knock-off brands have that desperate quality about them. Was it Judy Garland or Jeff Bezos who has that oft repeated quote: “Always be a first rate version of yourself and not a second-rate version of someone else”? Knock-off brands strive only to be a second-rate version and that disparity between what they want to be and what they actually are is always good for a few chuckles.
Knock-off brands typically present themselves as less-expensive alternatives to the brand you actually want. These are great options when you’re shopping on a budget. For example, Mountain Lightning from Wal-Mart is half the price of Mountain Dew. If you’re going to be buying gross green soda, why pay full price just for the brand name? Although for the dollars you save, you end up paying more when you factor in “explaining to visitors that Mountain Lightning is basically the same thing as Mountain Dew.” Still, these can be great alternatives and by the way, as far as weather events happening on mountains, lightning is way cooler than dew.
As a former connoisseur of return fraud, (emphasis on former, OK?) I am intimately aware of the return policies of many of the chain retailers cluttering America’s once-breathtaking landscape. Some, of course, are better than others. Pretty much all of them are better than Best Buy’s, which is god-awful. (That’s right, Best Buy! I’m callin’ you out!) The ones in this article, as I’m sure you’ve already gathered by the title, rank among the best. It’s hard to find satisfaction in this world, especially when it comes to interacting with big box retailers, but these faceless corporations are A-ok in my book.
As a peddler of wares for the upper class, it stands to reason that Nordstrom should have the Rolls-Royce of return policies. And boy, do they. Their official policy is, well, that there isn’t one. Which means you can return items years after you’ve bought them—hell, even after you’ve worn them. Which, naturally, makes Nordstrom a hotbed for fraudulent activity. A friend of mine’s mother, who used to work there, has horror stories about gritting her teeth and taking back used underwear. (The customer’s always right, after all!) If anything you buy at Nordie’s “malfunctions” (up to and including flip flops that fell apart after a summer or eight), you can bring it back for a refund. You don’t even need a receipt, just the tag from the item you purchased. Now, before you go hog-wild and return every single thing you’ve ever bought at Nordstrom, know this—returns negatively affect the commissions of the employees who accept ‘em. So have a heart. Please?
Before this, various Comedy Central shows had their own apps, but most of them (like The Colbert Report’s) let you watch only clips. Now you can see the latest episodes of over a dozen shows, in their entirety, the day after they air.
In other words, at long last, you can stream last night’s “Daily Show” on the train ride to work. In your face, boredom! (Just try to keep the laughter down. Some of us have work to do.)
Retail therapy is a real thing as proven by science. In a study conducted by researchers from the University of Michigan it was found that shopping is more than brief escapism. It does genuinely make you a happier person. They write in their findings, published in the Journal of Consumer Psychology, “Our experiments provided support for the notion that making shopping choices helps to restore a sense of personal control over one’s environment, and thus helps to alleviate sadness.”
I used to be the type that would spend big bucks on a new clothes and gadgets whenever I got bad news, or felt a little bit off on a certain day. However, after depleting the little money I had, I knew I would need to change my impulsive, frivolous lifestyle. The problem is, since I can’t afford real therapy, retail therapy is the only form of therapy I have. So instead of ditching it entirely, I decided to keep up with my frivolous lifestyle, but on a smaller scale. Instead of buying a new dress for $60, I now go to my local CVS and buy the most expensive dish soap in stock.
A common conundrum for the foodie on a tight budget is the issue of health vs. cost. Sure, free-range, organic chicken breasts are better for you (and tastier) than hot dogs, but money is tight and that ish is expensive.
I don’t like to play that game though. For my money, I’ll take real, high-quality, inexpensive protein that is versatile, easy to find, and delicious. Enter the incredible, edible (yeah, I went there) egg.
Perhaps best known for their presence in all things breakfast, eggs are actually ideal for meals spanning the day. And for between $2.50 and $4.50 for 12 of them, they’re a heck of a deal. By making eggs the star of plate, you’ll find that you can indeed afford nutritious, protein-packed meals that satisfy your palate and keep you full for hours. Read on for 10 affordable and sexy egg-based meal ideas:
To walk into a coffee shop and be told “We’re cash only,” is irksome for a number of reasons: the clerk tends to say it as though the company had been born that way or something. As though there’s an all-powerful god of payment forms, and we must do his bidding.
It’s not divine will. It’s a shortsighted business decision by often distrustful or resentful business owners. Contrary to popular belief, operating as a cash-only business is neither profitable for companies, nor beneficial for anyone in the grand scheme of things. (OK, a few companies can benefit but the way they go about it is not nice.) Here’s why it’s so bad, and what recourse you have, and in order to explain it all, I may have to bust a couple myths along the way.
It’s Tax Season, and obviously we are all very excited for the partiest time of the year. But we heard this crazy rumor that not everyone was super excited to do their taxes- and that some people still haven’t done theirs! We have no way of knowing if that’s true, but just in case, we’re talking last-minute tax tips and giving away over $1000 in prizes, including 10 TurboTax codes for FREE federal tax filing software (up to $1000 value each)!
It’s an age-old question: Now that you’ve purchased a new PC, what do you do with the old one? (Tossing it in a lake is not a wise idea, tempted though you might be.)
The age-old answer: install Linux. You know, that “other” operating system that’s kind of like Windows, only not really, and requires a degree in programming to use?
Reality check: Linux has matured a lot over the years, to the point where anyone accustomed to Windows should have no trouble using it. What’s more, despite offering nearly all the software power of Windows, Linux requires way less hardware power.
via Creative Commons Flickr user Scorpions and Centaurs
It’s an election year, albeit a midterm one. But with the presidential race looming in 2016, and campaigns starting earlier than ever, it is imperative that you start thinking about how to get the most political bang for your buck. You don’t want to be one of those chumps blindly donating to your preferred candidate with no assurance that anything will come from it, do you? Of course not. You want to make sure your actual “change” translates into political “change”! (Feel free to use that around the water cooler. That’s where I heard it.) So let’s jump in. I’ll take you through the various ways in which you can insert your money into the political process, and determine the relative strengths and weaknesses of each choice.
1. Donate to someone running for office. This is a direct way to put your money into the coffers of your preferred candidate. You might think that would be a good thing, but it isn’t. According to federal law, individuals can only donate a paltry $2,600 to a candidate’s campaign. That contribution isn’t going to amount to much in a presidential election when television ad buys cost millions of dollars. Not to mention the fact that such campaign war chests are so huge, the influence your $2,600 is going to be extremely minimal. For this reason, if you do insist on taking this route, it’s best to donate to campaigns closer to home. Forgo presidential and even senate campaigns for a congressional race. Or magnify your donation further by only donating to state, county or municipal candidates. Your local dog catcher may not be able to make pot legal, but you’ll at least have one politician in your pocket.
It was immediately clear that Beverly was not expecting a voice as deep as mine to respond from behind the fitting room curtain as she pleasantly strolled by and asked in her delightful British accent, “Are you ladies doing okay in there?” Her fellow employee had been the one to set me up to try on my finds and so her startled “Excuse me?” was less out of judgement and more out of the simple complete lack of having expected it. Hearing this in her voice, I muttered “no worries, I’m just transgender, it’s confusing,” to the giggles of my friend in the neighboring booth and went on trying on the awesome peacock skirt that I ended up buying.
It wasn’t always so easy. At 32, completely out and living openly as a transgender person, my experiences with shopping are vastly different from that of a mid-teen me, who would’ve been far too terrified at the idea of anyone jumping from shock at my voice to ever reply in the first place. Even the idea of walking into a store, being seen as a teenage boy perusing the women’s clothing, taking something I liked and actually asking to try it on seemed so daunting, so unachievable a task that you may as well have asked me to go ahead and master calculus and whip up a cure for cancer using household goods while I was at it.
Chipotle has been building their brand very effectively since formally rejecting traditional advertising techniques in 2010, and they’re not afraid to use a bit of good old-fashioned fear mongering in their bold strategy.
Recently, Chipotle made headlines by announcing that they would stop serving guacamole if nothing were to be done about the climate crisis. Well, in so many words.
In truth, the burrito brand says they were simply warning investors that extreme weather events “associated with global climate change” may potentially affect the availability, and therefore the price, of some of their key ingredients, including guacamole. If prices were to rise, Chipotle isn’t sure that they would pay the extra amount, as that would likely raise their prices. They aren’t getting rid of guacamole or anything though, so don’t worry. They were just saying, that’s all.
As my husband and I prepare for a potential big move out of the city to somewhere more suburban (read: less public transportation friendly), we’ve realized that along with all the other life changes that come with a move like this, we’ll also have to now purchase and take care of a car.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve owned cars before, and I completely understand that life outside of a big city pretty much requires one. It’s just that I haven’t owned one in quite a while, and neither has my husband … we weren’t even sure where to start.
Spring has sprung! Well, actually, spring is still cowering in a corner like a frightened little girl, at least around these parts. But the day is coming when we’ll want to shed our parkas in favor of shorts, t-shirts, and even bathing suits.
I don’t know about you, but I spent most of this winter eating like a bear who forgot to hibernate. Consequently, I’ve got some extra pounds that need removal. Thankfully, I’ve also got a smartphone.
Plenty of apps can help with this challenge; my favorites include MyFitnessPal and RunKeeper, which have proven indispensable in recent years.
However, sometimes you need a little extra incentive, or at least a way to shake up your regular routine. That’s why I’m always on the lookout for apps that make fitness and weight-loss more fun, if not downright profitable. Here are three of the latest that can help you health yourself.
There are a lot of different looming crises that threaten to destroy this great country we call America: global warming, unemployment, Justin Bieber, nuclear war, asteroids. There’s one looming crisis that you probably don’t know about that’s more dangerous than all of the others combined. We’re heading for a serious bacon price hike. That’s right. The preferred breakfast meat of the proletariat may soon be only affordable to the 1%.
You may think I’m just a conspiracy nut, but I’ve got facts to back me up. In the past ten years, the price of bacon has skyrocketed from $3.16 a pound to $5.56 a pound. That’s a 75% increase in only ten years. To put that in perspective, bacon prices only increased 12% from 1984 to 1994. It wasn’t until the 90’s – when the no carb Atkins diet became super popular – that bacon prices started to climb uncontrollably. From 1994 through 2004, it increased 55%. If you think bacon prices are bad now, it’s going to just keep getting worse.