Summer is the season for partying. Between just Memorial Day, Independence Day and Labor Day there’s enough celebration to make up for the rest of the year. This is usually through excessive amounts of food and drink, and this deadly duo of digestion often leads to blurred vision and slurred speech, followed by vomiting on the side of your parents’ house and blaming it on your friend while he’s still sleeping, and telling everyone not to bring it up around him because he’ll be too embarrassed.
I digress. The problem with summer parties isn’t that Jeff painted the house in Yuengling and potato salad (at least that’s the story Ian told me, and that I shouldn’t mention it to Jeff), but that these parties are too expensive. After you buy yourself a cooler, extra lighting, classy outdoor speakers camouflaged as rocks, and a barbeque, you’re too broke to think about anything fun.
|I don't know what I was expecting, but the first Google Image search I did to fill this area was "vomit". Anyway, here's some delicious Lebanese Potato Salad from EatingWell.com.|
The solution is to know the return policies of the big stores in your area and exploiting them as much as your conscience can handle*. For example, Walmart will accept most returns within 90 days with a receipt. Without a receipt, you can still get a cash refund if the item is under $25. Anything over that and you get a gift card. In addition, your driver license information is recorded for receipt-less returns so that you don’t make a habit of buying things on Amazon and then returning them to Walmart for a profit. In short, feel free to splurge on the 80qt Steel Patio Cooler Cart because you’re going to be returning it anyway.
Before you go out and try to set up your ultimate free party, understand the limits. No one is going to take back your hotdogs, even with a receipt. Also, if you’re seen trying to return 20 tiki torches, a $500 grill and a Dewalt worksite radio to Home Depot, they’ll probably honor their return policy but they’re within their rights to blacklist you from the store. You can also do what I do, and pay $8 for a six pack to bring to your friend’s party instead of hosting your own.
|"Here's the receipt. I don't know if this is important but the ice melted on the drive over. It's still in there, though."|
*Do not partake in any activity in this post if you have a single care about the economy. This kind of behavior contributes to higher costs and in general it hurts businesses. See this article for more information.