Jewish Journal

Live large, but pay little!

by Annie Korzen

March 28, 2011 | 10:43 am

The market goes up, the market goes down. We’re in a boom, we’re in a recession, we’re in a depression. None of this economic see-saw has ever affected me, because I’ve been a thriftaholic all my life. As we follow this roller-coaster ride we call the economy, skills in the art of penny-pinching are becoming a necessity.

In my book, BARGAIN JUNKIE: LIVING THE GOOD LIFE ON THE CHEAP, I show that living on a budget doesn’t mean abandoning expensive tastes or a love of culture. Because I’ve practiced frugality all of my life, I have figured out how to spend my cash sparingly and still live a lifestyle of the rich and famous.

I wear designer clothes, have filled my home with valuable objects, eat out as often as possible, give the occasional dinner party, put a child through college, and have traveled all over the world – all on the cheap. My mantra? You don’t have to be rich to live well.

I attended a wedding reception for the Swedish actor Max Von Sydow wearing a swanky dress from a consignment shop. It retailed for over $800 – I paid $100.

A lot of upscale restaurants have low-cost specials on certain days. In Los Angeles, I ran into Patricia Heaton – an old friend from acting class – at Campanile’s grilled cheese night.

At a celebration of his Oscar win for BABETTE’S FEAST, my husband Benni managed to dip the sleeve of his suede blazer into a bowl of tomato soup. Good thing I only paid 90 cents for it in a thrift shop!

The economy is down, but there’s no need to do without.  Learn how to live large for very little with Bargain Junkie!

Annie will be in Neil Simon’s PRISONER OF SECOND AVENUE with Jason Alexander at the El Portal Theatre April 21 - May 15.  Read more at www.AnnieKorzen.com.

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Annie Korzen is a comedy writer and performer. Her humorous essays have been printed in The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, San Francisco Chronicle, and more. She has...

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