The Chronic Consumer

I buy things — all the time!

Made in America

I just read an interesting article on Yahoo (I would link to it, but Yahoo routinely removes their links after a few months and I hate having dead links on my site) about 10 American industries that are still hanging on despite globalization and the trend towards moving factories overseas. Interested in buying stuff that’s Made in America? Then spend your dollars on these products:

  • Bowling balls (Ebonite International)
  • Sparklers (Diamond Sparkler)
  • Compact discs (Sony DADC)
  • Pianos (Mason & Hamlin, Steinway)
  • Socks (various companies in Fort Payne, Alabama)
  • Ironing boards (HPI Seymour)
  • Pencils (General Pencil, Sanford)
  • Sneakers (New Balance)
  • Electrical relays (Struthers-Dunn)
  • Chopsticks (Georgia Chopsticks)

Old Navy t-shirt fail

This image has been making the rounds on various news and shopping sites. Old Navy apparently teamed up with a bunch of colleges and pro sports team for apparel for their new “Fan Shop,” and one of the items for sale is this t-shirt. Notice there’s no apostrophe in the “Lets Go” part… hmmm, big mistake there. Also, some perfectionists have been complaining about the use of two exclamation points. That doesn’t bother me as much because I do that all the time and think it’s just fine for something like a t-shirt. But the “let’s” typo? Total fail!

Fall fashions

Thank goodness the fall fashions are now coming out at the mall. I can finally walk through there without feeling like a bloated cow as I look at all the skimpy bathing suits that I would never, ever fit into. After passing each summer display, I would vow to exercise for three hours a day and consume nothing but diet pills until I dropped 10 or 15 pounds. Now that I see hoodies, sweaters, and other baggy items, I don’t have to worry about things like that!

UV Light for Pet Stains

Although my two dogs are housebroken, there are accidents from time to time. Even though I always try to clean the stains as thoroughly as possible, I have recently become obsessed with tracking down hidden sources of odor. That’s why I want to buy a UV light that will help uncover urine stains. I’ve been reading about various lights for the past hour, but it’s hard to make a choice because the customer reviews contain such conflicting information. Some lights “work great” for some people, while the very same products are called “cheap” and “useless” by others. The prices are all over the place too, ranging from $7 (I can just tell that one won’t work) to $1,600 (obviously I don’t need anything that elaborate). Guess I’ll have to spend even more time than I thought trying to figure this out!

Chicago Blackhawks Beach Towel

A couple weeks ago I purchased a Missouri Tigers beach towel. I liked the item so much that I decided to get another similar product. This time, instead of going for a college team, I chose to buy a Chicago Blackhawks towel. I know, hockey isn’t exactly something that people usually think of when they hit the beach in the middle of summer, but whatever. I plan on using it more as a bath towel than a real beach towel anyway. Since it’s pretty much the same as the other one, I’ll just copy and past my original description here:

  • 100% cotton
  • Sublimated graphics
  • Washer/dryer safe
  • Officially licensed
  • Large 30″ x 60″ size

I love these team towels! Which one should I buy next??!

No more HP computers?

I just read an article that said Hewlett-Packard is giving up on its mobile products and is considering selling off its PC division, too. This makes me a tiny bit sad because my first-ever computer was a Compaq (now owned by HP) laptop and my second-ever was an HP laptop. Hard to believe that in less than 15 years, a giant like HP could be out of the marketplace entirely. How quickly things change!!

Free Credit Report

Hello fellow consumers,

I just want to remind you to make sure you take advantage of the government’s offer to review your credit report for free once a year. You can fill out the electronic form at Annual Credit Report and receive a printable copy from TransUnion, Equifax, or the other place (I forget the name at the moment) within minutes.

This is not your credit score, but a report. It will show you the loans and credit card accounts in your name in the past 10 years and will say how many late payments you’ve had in that time.

I’m happy to say that my report was 100% clean, with a total of zero late payments in the last decade (or ever, really). Maybe I should celebrate by getting a new credit card or something!! 😉

Louboutin Loses

You don’t have to be a fashion maven to know that shoes with red soles are most likely by upscale designer Christian Louboutin. But that might not always be the case anymore. Louboutin has lost a lawsuit against Yves Saint Laurent for the exclusive right to use that red color on the bottom of footwear. The court battle took place in NY, where a judge ruled that it would not be copyright infringement for YSL and other brands to use the same red. The ruling mentioned something about color being vital to “robust competition” in the fashion industry.

That makes sense to me. If each design house were allowed to trademark or copyright colors, then where would that leave consumers? Then again, doesn’t Tiffany own exclusive right to their particular shade of blue? I wonder why that is. Maybe the jewelry industry is different from the fashion industry in that regard!

At any rate, the next time you see red soles on someone’s shoes, don’t automatically assume they’re from Louboutin!