Tuesday, March 31, 2009

A while back, I read about a movement (probably apocryphal, at least at the time) called "zero spending," wherein people spend no money--other than that required to pay bills--for a period of time, usually a couple of months. This means no movies, no CD's (or iTunes downloads), no eating out. These people take the money that they save, and either donate it to charity or use it to pay down debt.

For the month of April, I'm doing it. No April Fools, I'm serious.

I've eaten my last McDonald's (and boy was it good), I've downloaded my last mp3, and I've taken my last "just browsing" trip to Barnes and Noble. I've spent all my Microsoft points downloaded the last map pack, and I'm taking the plunge. (Full disclosure, I'm keeping cable, Internet, and Gamefly, as I consider them to be among my basic bills, though I did toy with eliminating all three.)

It's going to take a LOT of willpower on my part, but I think it'll be worth it. At the end of the month, I'm going to split what I've saved, with half going to charity, and half being added to my student loan payment (I'd be lying if I tried to act like I didn't have at least a slightly selfish motive.)

What I need from you, dear readers, are two things. I need suggestions for free entertainments, especially on weekends. Free concerts? Good free podcasts worth checking out? Please, post them in the comments below. In addition, I need good suggestions for a charity. I'm partial to the Humane Society, but there a plenty of people who need help too. Again, if there's one you like, post it in the comments. Sure, it probably won't be a lot of money, but it's the right thing to do, and your help is appreciated.