Sunday, August 14, 2005

Buying supplies

I spend large amounts of money every year buying school supplies. Last year about $1,000. Yes, I know about Donor's Choose and organizations like them -- they're great for big things, but the constant necessity to supply the bare necessities inhibits their usefulness. This buying of things is a condition unique to teachers: athletes don't buy their own shoes, astronauts do not supply their own thermal blankets, postal workers don't buy those little wheelie-carts, scientists are not asked to bring in their own centrifuges, med-students don't go digging for cadavers, investment bankers are not asked to -- hell, I don't even know what investment bankers do. I guess porn stars and practicioners of the world's oldest profession do need to chip in for certain types of work-related materials, but I bet they get better deduction opportunities than I do.

So... the large corporate retailer: endless bins of school supplies, stuff all over the floor, kids arguing with their parents in two languages simultaneously over the relative merits of the kitten vs. Spongebob folder. I bought folders, notebooks, pens, plants, markers, whiteboard markers, colored pencils. There is no teacher discount offered by this large corporate retailer. This is an atrocity, but I created a teacher discount myself by placing cheaper look-alike items atop my stack of more expensive items. My cashier was somewhat lacking in thoroughness and the mental agility necessary to keep pace with a wiley shopper like myself, and I saved roughly as much money as I would have given the existence of a teacher discount.

I do not feel badly about this.

I'm sure this large corporate retailer has committed societal atrocities at least as equivalent as my self-created discount in the name of something far less redeeming than furthering the educational opportunities in an under-resourced community. I wear the cloak of moral righteousness, warm and safe beneath the blanket of an ends and means argument.

Ten Days to Go and I'm:

1) Re-planning my first two days activities.

2) Practicing functioning at a high intellectual/ energy level on 5 hours of sleep.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

A source for quality discount school supplies.

2:40 PM  

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