Frugal Idea #18

24 is not only the number of my birthday, but it is the number I placed a bet on in a game of Roulette in Las Vegas. I lost $300.00 that night.

Gambling and Frugality – how am I writing about this? In the past month, my stress level was high, I had a full plate at work and a few personal challenges seemed to arrive at the most inconvenient time. A friend invited me to Las Vegas and I jumped at the chance. I had an awesome weekend relaxing in the pool, visited a spa, and danced at a low key club off the strip. Of course, the temptation of gambling can be too hard to resist. The money I lost at the Roulette table was actually a calculated amount. I stuck with my budget for gambling.

Money is meant to be spent (and saved of course). I once learned that we must put our spending in perspective. For example, one may buy a $80 jacket that was on sale. The jacket was the 3rd black jacket purchased, but it had a collar that was unique and was a little warmer for the upcoming winter. Let’s say that jacket was worn once in one year after purchase. After wearing it once, the person discovered her friend had the same jacket. She then decided that it didn’t bother her, it would be a great jacket for the winter. As the summer passed and winter arrived, she had gained 10 pounds and the jacket no longer fit as well as she liked. She was no longer excited to wear the jacket. Earlier in the year, she purchased a business suit for work. It was on sale as well. She purchased it for $400.00. However, she was able to wear it at least 3 times a month for the entire year. She wore it 36 times in one year making her suit a value of $11.11 per wear. The jacket she wore once in the year valued at $80.00.

I decided that if I am going to spend money, I would make sure the purchase has value to me and will be used multiple times. Since gambling was not something I can physically use multiple times, I decided to put perspective on what I was going to lose. I put a maximum budget on my gambling in direct correlation to how many hours of work I would be willing to lose.

For example, if you made $52k annually, your hourly rate is $25.00 per hour (divide your annual salary by 2080 which is the amount of hours are in a typical work year. There are 52 weeks in the year and you multiply that by 40 hours). If you gambled $200.00 and lost it, you just lost one hard day of work (8 hours at $25.00 per hour = $200.00). Always think to yourself, was my hard day at work worth my action? Was my hard day at work worth that Coach wallet?

Although, I was down $300.00, I invested in memories with my friend. I still believe 24 will be the lucky number one day. Until next time Vegas!

C'Mon Black 24  (Picture borrowed from

C’Mon Black 24
(Picture borrowed from



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