When you write a few different blogs, it’s inevitable that topics will overlap occasionally. This is one of those times.
Frugal college students know how to save money on the things they need for school. Buying textbooks online, for example, is a great way to save a bundle. Learn how to save even MORE on your college textbooks at my other blog, here!
Four days into the school year, and already I have piles of books to read and papers to write.
My printer has been bone dry for a while now, and I’ve been avoiding buying a new ink cartridge. The school library is closed today, so I can’t print my papers (for free) on their computers.
Oh, my dear co-eds. The insatiable college homework machine does not stop churning for empty inkwells!
Reluctantly, I ventured out into the rain towards Office Max, with a 10% coupon in hand.
Black inkjet cartridge for my Epson printer:
Epson brand: $24.99
Office Max brand: $21.99
Of course I chose the store brand cartridge. Still criminally over-priced at $21.99, but better than $24.99. The coupon saved me another two dollars.
I’m sure I could have gotten it even cheaper, but poor planning will cost you big bucks every time. Shame on me.
Before heading home, I stopped for gas. The Shell station had regular unleaded for $2.74 a gallon. Still criminally over-priced, but much better than it’s been.
As I pumped liquid dollars into the tank, something horrifying occurred to me. As soon as I got home, I grabbed a calculator and did the math.
Assuming there are two fluid ounces of ink in the cartridge I’d just bought, then a gallon (128 ounces) of ink would cost $1407.36.
The ink for my printer costs 513 times the current price of gasoline.
How is that even legal?
Public Libraries are both temples of knowledge and vigorous defenders of freedom of speech. Lofty idealistic concepts aside, they are also an endless source of free reading material.
Every time I come across an online review or recommendation for a book that sounds interesting to me, I just open up another tab in Firefox and punch a few keys. In a few days, I go downtown and pick up a free copy of that interesting book that so intrigued me!
Lean in closer, young wizards, and I shall divulge wonders beyond your imagination!
That magical secret is MINERVA, the online inter-library network for Maine Public Libraries. If my local branch doesn’t have the book I’m looking for, I can search the entire state through MINERVA– and borrow it from any other branch… delivered right to my local library!
I just love this system so much. Gone are the days when I spent too much money on books. Now I can check them out for free, and then decide which ones are worthy of acquiring for my own library.
Check your library’s website. I’ll bet they have the same system available.
Filed under books, budget, cheap entertainment, cheap fun, college, free stuff, freebies, frugal, libraries, library, reading, school
- Registered for fall classes (15 credits)
Creative Writing, Developmental Psychology, Maine History, Critical Thinking, and College Algebra
- Accepted a very generous financial aid package
Federal Pell Grant, Federal Supplemental Grant, Maine State Grant, Chamber of Commerce Scholarship, Federal Work-Study, Subsidized Stafford Loan
- Scheduled for new student orientation on August 17th
Getting my student ID photo taken, meeting with department faculty and staff, getting all the inside scoop, feeling like a real student at last.
- Working a highly quittable job, just to survive until financial aid kicks in
I am capable of living on very little money, and am not too terribly concerned about quitting at this point.
Yes, indeedily do.
In September, I will be the world’s oldest living college freshman, and I cannot wait to get going.
A “lucky” combination of financial suffering in recent years, femaleness and advanced age seems to have strengthened my eligibility for grants and scholarships. I will have a loan, but my overall debt will be very low.
I hate my job and may or may not quit in the next few hours. I’ve worked almost 100 hours for them as of last night, and still have not received a penny.
Nevertheless, it may be July, but here in Maine, I can already smell autumn in the air, and life is good.