“Don’t ever trust anybody.”
–Stone Cold Steve Austin
“That story would bring a tear to a glass eye.”
–Stone Cold Steve Austin
When I was growing up, I watched professional wrestling religiously. Even in high school, I still had a scintilla of belief that it might not be real, though if questioned by my friends, I vehemently denied any belief that it was anything besides articulate choreography.
SPOILER ALERT! (It’s not real)
When I was deployed to Bosnia, “Mad” Mark Busbee and I would go to the coffee shop on Tuzla Base on Sunday afternoons and watch WWF on the Armed Forces Network TV. He and I were mesmerized. Nobody else seemed to be too interested in watching.
During the 90s, I pretty much had no access to television, so I missed out on pro wrestling. However, I had one friend who had a great DVD of the best of Stone Cold Steve Austin’s matches. I was captivated. He had an appeal which reached down into my gut and grabbed me. Everything about him just looked cool.
Especially the shaved head. Some people can pull off bald. Some can’t. Then there was Stone Cold Steve Austin. The shaved head gave me a man crush on him.
So, in 2005, I was working at Capital One with a Naval Academy grad. The Army-Navy football game was upcoming. Navy was favored by something like 478 points. Regardless, there was the required smack talk between us about the superiority of Army or Navy (Army…need you even ask?). The smack talk escalated, until suddenly, there was the dare of a bet. Who was I to back down? I named the price: hair versus hair. If I won, I got to see my co-worker get a nice buzz cut. If I lost, well, I got a chance to see if I really could pull off the Stone Cold Steve Austin look.
- Males: shave your head; females: learn how to cut your own fringe. Yes, there was a point to the Stone Cold Steve Austin fanboy story. I lost the bet. Doug dragged me up to the Hair Cuttery and ordered them to shave my head. The hairdressers were slack-jawed. Apparently, this was a request with which they were unfamiliar. Finally, after about five minutes of explaining that yes, my hair was to be completely removed, they attacked me with gusto. I then bought a pair of clippers myself, and have saved myself the biweekly $15 expense of going to the barber shop. I can roughly estimate that I’ve saved myself $3,000 over the past eight years from not going to the barber.
- Cut your cable. People seem to think that they can’t live without the droning of the boob tube. Try it. You might like it. Your wallet will.
- Go 7,500 miles between oil changes. The oil change industry will still have you believe that you need to change your oil every 3,000 miles. However, between improvements in oil and improvements in engines, it’s probably not necessary. If you don’t believe me, check out the state of California’s calculator to prove it for yourself.
- Get rid of your phone. Between Google Voice and Skype, you could go completely without a phone. Fifteen years ago, you probably didn’t even have a cell phone, and now you think you can’t live without one. Try unplugging. You might like it.
- Drink only water. Your body doesn’t need anything else. Americans spend approximately $850 a year per person on sodas and $435 per person per year on alcoholic beverages.
I still shave my head. I can’t envision spending $15 to have someone else run a razor over my head when I can do it in the shower in five minutes. However, I do not look like Steve Austin, and that’s the bottom line.
What’s your non-traditional way of saving money? Would you shave your head to save $15 every two weeks? Tell us about it in the comments below!