I Delivered Food for $4
As you may know one from reading Even Steven Money, my personal finance leak is eating out. I would say my eating out habit is mostly in check, but Mrs. Even Steven might hurt our eating out budget a little more than me, but since we are married and we became one WE have a personal finance leak of eating out, which leads me to a little story about our week and how I earned $4 as a delivery guy.
Recently we took a trip to visit family in Columbia, Missouri where one of my family members coaches basketball. It’s our 3rd annual trip and we love it…..especially me, since I’m a big basketball guy. The travel time itself is about 8 hours with gas, lunch, and Angelita breaks (Our Siberian Husky). My early retirement goal is to live in a college town, similar to Columbia which is full of college students, culture, athletics, and much more. This allows me to get a taste of what I would like and dislike about the college town environment. The long weekend gives me a chance to visit with family, talk and watch basketball, and most important for this blog post eat out at some fun new restaurants and coffee shops.
We recently came back after President’s Day weekend most likely lagging from the drive and non-stop activity that we are probably not used to, especially going back to work for the short work makes you quickly wonder why I attend work every day or better yet why I am working to achieve financial independence and early retirement. The fact that it was close to 0 degrees the entire week might have had something to do with all my optimism for attending work. With all that being said after a busy long weekend turned into a long week at work and a few weekday night activities, I was ready for a quiet night at home, actually I was begging for it.
Mrs. Even Steven asked if I wanted Sushi from a place in our neighborhood, about 2 blocks away. My defense systems were weak, I had taken out food to cook that night, but the mention of someone doing it for me and I was easily swayed. I’m sure you are thinking, Don’t Do It Even Steven! This is your personal finance leak, this is a gateway drug to eating out at big fancy restaurants, taking taxis to work, and getting bottle service at the club. Who am I kidding, I don’t go to the club, maybe when I was young and foolish or when I’ve had a couple craft brews and Mrs. Even Steven tricks me into dancing, but I have provided a couple to many details. What’s great is we have changed. Months ago this used to be a weekly occurrence, no text message or conversation on if we should grab something from a near by restaurant, we question our decision on spending $25 at a restaurant, we have bigger goals, we have changed.
Eating out at a restaurant has become an event out of the ordinary. Once or twice a week has stretched to once every two weeks to go out for a meal. This past Friday however we ordered out, we ordered from our local Thai/Sushi restaurant and we decided to order online. While filling out the order we came to the last checkout before we paid, but we had 2 options: Carry Out or Delivery? Carry out required me to put on some winter clothes and walk outside into the Chiberia temperatures that are similar to what Polar Bear’s dream about. The Delivery option would include a $4 surcharge for delivery plus whatever tip we would include. What would you choose?
After careful consideration I decided that paying someone $4 to drive 2 blocks and deliver the food to my house was borderline insanity. Mrs. Even Steven on the other hand being from Miami thought quite the opposite. Going outside into Chiberia in 0 degree temperatures was borderline insanity and couldn’t imagine going back out into the cold, $4 was not only reasonable she was already adding the $4 on to the bill. NOT SO FAST, we are trying to retire early and $4 adds up into millions based on the math of living to 104 and eating out every day and having the food delivered(actual math not done, but I’m guessing it’s millions). How about instead of paying someone to deliver the food to our house, how about you pay me $5 to walk and get our order. The negotiation included a little back and forth about tipping your delivery man, but we settled on paying me $4 cash to deliver our food to the house. Let’s just say I enjoyed making my $4 for 10 minutes of work. If you are keeping track at home, that’s $24/hr or about $50,000/year. Yep we have changed, eating out less, cooking more, convincing the wife to pay me $4 to avoid a delivery charge, all part of the Early Retirement Blueprint.
Have you and your significant other done something a little extra Frugal to save a few dollars?