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Counting the cost of being tight
SOME people have a strange attitude to money. I am very bad in this area – I can spend £20 walking down the road and yet have nothing to show for it.
However, I would rather have my slightly casual attitude to cash than be a tightwad.
A few years ago, I was at an old friend’s birthday celebrations and a group of 15 of us had gone to his favourite restaurant.
The meal was fine everyone was in good spirits, until the awkward moment when the bill arrived.
Everyone roughly totted up what they had, rounded it up and threw £20 into the pot.
However, I noticed a small group at the end of the table, who had been guzzling wine all night, painstakingly counting out a very small pile of coins.
Unsurprisingly, the total came up short and these scroungers looked around as confused as everyone else as if butter wouldn’t melt in their mouths – butter they would, no doubt, have expected my dining companions and I to pay for.
Embarrassed, everyone else chipped in a few extra pounds while these people kept their hands in their pockets.
They would have got away with this if one had not arrogantly complained they had already paid more than their meal cost by several pence. With empty bottles piled up in front of them, they grudgingly handed over another handful of coins.
I was appalled at their conduct but later found from female friends that some men adopt a penny-pinching attitude to dating.
If I go out on a date I am in no financial position to dazzle a lady friend with splendour but I do think it polite to pay for our first outing.
But a friend of mine told me recently how she agreed to go on a date with someone who was on romantic economy drive.
After asking what she wanted to drink he avoided eye contact with bar staff until she reached for her purse.
After dinner, the waitress asked the pair if they would like another round of drinks. He wrinkled his nose and looked concerned before saying a line that I am sure has never got a woman in a frisky mood.
“I’ll get this round if you pay for the puddings.”