There is something about pricing that really gets me excited. Maybe it was my humble beginnings. I’m sure I grew up with more than many people. But from my perspective, we didn’t have enough. We needed to make every dollar go as far as it could.
At Christmas time, I would get out the Sears catalog and quickly turn to the toy section. I studied every item, in the boy section of course. I would circle, and circle, and circle. I wanted so much.
Christmas morning, Santa brought me a few of those toys. My parents made us three kids take turns. I hated having to wait for my brother and sister to take their turns. It was so fun ripping into a package, screaming with excitement. It was the kind of joy we rarely experience as adults.
After we kids had opened the Santa packages, it was time for the adults and all of the other gifts. One by one, we would open gifts. It was slow, and tedious, and boring. This is where I got socks and underwear.
Completely underappreciated at the time, but several times during this tradition, someone would get a nicer gift from Mom and Dad. Like a sweater, or a jacket. And inevitably, Mom would have a story, “Oh, I found that one at Macy’s, and it was just like a more expensive one, but half the price.” Or, “Oh, I saved 33% on that using green stamps.” Or, “Oh, I shopped at four different stores and finally found a great deal on that one.”
My mom loved saving money, and she loved telling us about it even more. I didn’t know it at the time, but I was learning how important price was to her. Of course, this wasn’t just at Christmas. But around the tree on Christmas morning, she had an audience. She had pent up stories she couldn’t share until the gift was opened. She was in her element.
Maybe my love of pricing started because I wanted to understand my mom better. Who knows? But there are few things I like better than figuring out how people think about price. I am extremely grateful for what mom and dad did for us. They provided so many great memories. I loved Christmas as a child. I loved my mom who left us several years ago. And I still love pricing.
This Christmas, I hope you find great deals on all of the gifts. And especially the memories that you give. Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays.
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