As I entered my teens, I had a habit of going to the bookshop to select a pile of favourites I would like to acquire. Then I would return the least of my strong loves first to the sales shelves, till I was left with the last few must-haves.
Because even then, we were poor enough that I lacked a generous book budget. Finally, I would return those I most did not want to part with, and leave the bookstore empty-handed, unshopped.
Even into my adult working years, I would frequent video game arcades and be the silently loyal watcher, while players over the hours pumped dozens of dollars of tokens, and watch the story games from start to finish. Exit, unshopped.
It started with dollars-and-cents pinching before my pre-teens, with a long written shopping list from a ferocious single mother, threatening dire unholy consequences if I so much as made one mistake with wet-marketing budget, resulting in even 5 cents miscalculated. How to check if the fish were fresh (gills), which eggs to pick (not the largest ones, scan for cracks).
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