Sebuah filem yg diadaptasi dari sebuah novel
DEAR mom and dad, I have a confession. I haven’t exactly been the greatest kid a parent could ask for and I feel that this is one way to redeem myself.
I have a problem, a serious problem and I do not know how else to deal with it. I am a shopaholic.
I admit I spend your hard-earned money on things I barely need. I admit that I have to buy at least one item from a store before I leave. It is like a little souvenir. I admit that when I feel upset, a “little” shopping spree is all it takes to put me back in a jolly good mood.
I know there are people with far worst addictions, so what is mine in comparison? Nothing, right?
I was watching Confessions of a Shopaholic and a realisation hit me. Okay, shopping may seem superficial but there were some values to be learnt from the movie.
No, not that shopping is bad for your bank account. More like good parents (thrifty ones in this case) do not always produce good children. In the movie, Rebecca Bloomwood is a shopaholic and a sucker for high end merchandise while her parents are thrift store surveyors. I see an uncanny similarity in our family.
We are not rich and fall into the working middle class group. Dad gives me an allowance every week or so, but there are no special treatments – like a spa allowance or a first class ticket to an island whenever I am stressed. Heck, I don’t even own my own Lamborghini.
My parents are firm believers that money doesn’t grow on trees. Both my parents grew up in working class families and faced far more difficult times.
I was always taught that I needed to save my allowance if I wanted something. If I walked into Toys R US and saw the latest Malibu Barbie doll mansion, I couldn’t flutter my eyelashes and hope daddy will buy it for me. Even if I decided to throw a terrible toddler tantrum, daddy and mommy would be firm and drag me out of the store.
Most times, I bought things with pocket money I saved, plus whatever I got from relatives as ang pow.
As I grew older, I read fashion magazines and wanted to look like a fashionista – or, in my own words, an Asian version of Nicole Richie. There was an urge to buy clothes, shoes, bags and accessories.
One thing was never enough. Regardless of how perenially stylish a black-coloured top was, I’d always end up wanting more. One handbag in a staple color was not enough either. I needed a dozen bags in a dozen colours to suit each and every one of my outfits.
So how was I to get more money for that? Daddy would obviously not give me pocket money to burn on another pair of green wedges. Working during the holidays would always come in handy for that shopping fix I needed.
Mom would always remind me to think of the less fortunate. To put it in her words, “Wouldn’t it be better if you saved the money that you worked so hard to collect?”
But it never seemed to work. At the beginning of the semester, I would go to malls with friends and all the best sales were during that time. And when there was a mark down, my fingers were just itching to buy. I must shamelessly admit that I squirreled away many of my purchases before anyone could ask. Dad, remember the bag I said was a free gift? It wasn’t free.
I try to tell myself to save money, but it always seems to come to nothing. The only time I don’t shop is when I don’t have any money. Which is why I think it is a smart of my parents to not allow me a credit card. I could end up exactly like Rebecca Bloomwood, deep in debt and regret.
Sometimes when I feel like complaining for not getting a bigger allowance, or am envious of my friends who shop off their parents’ credit cards with no limits at all, I tell myself this – money is not easy to obtain. You have to work for it and only then will you appreciate its value. My parents have taught me well even though I have trouble trying to be wise when it comes to money.
So mom and dad, I promise you that I will try to save money and ignore the sales and beautiful shoes (unless I really really need them). After all, saving just might do us all a little good in this economic recession.