Shop Wiser.


You’re smart enough to buy online, but easily find yourself down a rabbit hole of offers, discounts, and price ranges that’ll make your head spin. It doesn’t have to be this way. With some basic knowledge, you can scoop up good deals, save some time and money, and do the things you really want to in your day.

For starters, use online coupons. There’s no reason you should be paying full price for everything all of the time. Luckily, this is made insanely simple for you. There are things you can add to your internet browser (I’ll assume you have Chrome; if you don’t, go download it, because it’s probably better than whatever you use). Coupons At Checkout is an extension for Chrome that will search the internet for coupon codes for the site you’re shopping on. You’re welcome.

If you’ve got some foresight, set alerts with a site like Slick Deals. You’ve had your eyes on a great blender, but can’t justify the near $600 price tag? Let this primarily user-generated site find the deals for you! When it drops in price somewhere, you’ll get an email with a link to where it’s being sold. Better? They don’t send you spam.

Doesn’t this feel good? You’re already saving money! But, wait! There’s more!

Are you an avid Amazon shopper? Then you should know a couple of key things. First, if you buy something there and the price changes (within seven days from delivery) they’ll issue you a refund for the difference. You can monitor Amazon price changes through this handy little site. Not an Amazon Prime member and need something immediately? Then know the stores that will match Amazon prices. I’ve literally held up my phone at the checkout at Best Buy to show a cheaper price, and the guy just changed it for me. No questions asked.

Flying? Don’t book on a Monday. That’s maybe the worst day you can do it. Surprisingly, Sundays are the new Tuesdays for booking flights.

Now that you’ve saved a bit of money and are done high-fiving yourself, it’ll be easier to pay for all the things you can’t say no to! You’ve got a talented painter friend who works his ass off? Awesome. You should buy his art. And remember how you’re always talking about your brilliant musician friend that has a kick-ass album? Also, who is gonna turn down a great comic book? You won’t, because you’ve just saved money! Oh, and at the end of the day, you may as well throw a couple of bucks at a guy who spent years writing a movie that I also have the smallest involvement in. So you should probably just go ahead and pick that up, too.


Pack Light. Travel Smart.


You don’t need that third pair of shoes. Books are too heavy, go digital. They’ll have shampoo, I promise. Do yourself a favor: Stop. Checking. Bags.

I used to pack everything into my giant suitcase, despite how senseless. My adult Batman onesie? “Well, it is cold where I’m going. Plus, how CUTE will I look?!” But nowadays, if you’re not a frequent flyer sporting some form of rewards from the airlines, you’ll almost certainly be charged for your first checked bag. Twenty-five bucks each way. That’s the average going rate. It’s time to grow up like I did, and only wear your Batman onesie at home.

A little while back, I began traveling the world with a few friends, hitting three countries per year. No matter where we go, and no matter for how long, each of us only travels with a carry-on and a personal item. This makes us lighter. Faster. Smarter. Airlines will hit you for any kinds of fees that they can, so smarten up and take some control. Save that fifty bucks and buy mom some flowers; she’ll love them.

Make the decision to save money, move faster, and enjoy where you’re going rather than be worried if you have the right “going out” jacket. My advice? Don’t even give yourself the option. Just ditch your big suitcase, get a carry-on, and force yourself to fit everything into it. When traveling abroad especially, those overhead bins can shrink. So when you’re looking for a new piece of carry-on luggage, make sure you know what size it should be. While you’re at it, pick up some handy packing cubes. They’ll make your life a little easier and I’ll let you take credit for discovering them when you’re telling your friends.

Now this one might be tough to swallow (especially for the ladies), but I highly recommend making your personal item a backpack. Something with plenty of pockets. You needn’t look like you’re a 19-year-old traveling the world on a baked-beans-and-extra-cot type of budget. Or that you must invest in something that will hold your canteen and tent. Instead, get a nice, affordable, smart backpack that makes sense and lets you feel adult while you’re taking in some Picasso at the Louvre. There are a million options out there, just pick one. And if at this point you’re thinking, “But I want my super nice fancy purse instead of this child-like backpack”, remember this: You’re saving fifty bucks and you left your Batman onesie at home.

Live Life More.


I truly believe that I’m luckier than most people. The friends that I have are so ridiculously incredible that I feel like a fraud when I’m around them. Like I have no business being there. That, at any point, they’ll see that I’m NOWHERE NEAR AS COOL as them and kick me to the curb like the “norm” that I am. Until then, I just try to stand idly by and take notes as to how awesomely they choose to live.

A few years ago, I signed up for Amazon Prime. If you don’t know what that is (prison, a remote island, or just waking up from a decade-long coma), just go get it. There are plenty of benefits, but getting to use that free 2-day shipping near the holidays makes it worth the money. In an attempt to impress my cool friends, I’ve shared my username and password with them. This means two things: 1) I get a confirmation email from Amazon showing what they’ve bought, and 2) They’ve let me be their friend just a little while longer.

I was in Santorini, Greece and hadn’t been connected to Wi-Fi the entire day. When I finally got to open my email, a lot of deleting followed. But one subject line caught my attention. Someone had used my Amazon account and bought a beekeeper’s suit. I casually thought, “That must be Rich”. Not because Rich told me that he was taking a beekeeping class, but because Rich is the only one I know who would do such an absurd (read: amazing) thing.

Rich is a lot like Jim Carrey in YES MAN. Axe-throwing? Yep. Roller derby? You bet. But is he an ordained minister who once took a class to have a falcon land on his arm? Of course he is. Rich just says, “yes”. A lesson we should all take in life. Don’t get me wrong, he’s also an idea guy. He once proposed that the gang and I get bounty hunter licenses, just to say that we have them. His way of thinking and living is nothing shy of inspirational.

And if you’re thinking that the fun/crazy stuff he’s doing must be super expensive, you’re wrong. The day I took a page out of Rich’s how-to-live handbook, I emailed everyone about trampoline dodgeball near us that cost a measly $16 per person for an hour of (exhausting) child-like fun. Oh, and it should come as no surprise that Rich was the first to Reply-All with his notoriously familiar “IN”.

So, go. Do something weird. Live a little. No, live a LOT. Fearlessly attack life. You can’t do it all. But you sure as hell can try.