Thursday, August 14, 2008

The Effect of Gas Prices on Friendship

I’ve been thinking a lot about the financial costs of friendship lately. It’s no secret that I live on a tight budget. So lately, I’ve been doing some pretty sad cost-benefit analyses to determine whether I want to spend time with my friends.

When my friends suggest that we meet at some place other than my home or my work place, I mentally calculate, “How much extra in gas will this cost me?” (I’ve concluded that for every 6 miles I drive, I spend $1 in gas. This doesn’t even include wear and tear or insurance costs.)

My best friend lives 104 miles away and it’ll cost me $34 just to visit her. Tomorrow, I will be driving to her city on business and I’ll be reimbursed approximately $142 for mileage. I’ll need to set aside $44 to cover the extra gas for the trip, but the remaining $98 will be “gravy”. Sweet! I’m hoping to stash most (if not all of) the entire $98 into my Christmas fund.

I am pondering whether I should stop by my friend’s place on my way home to catch up. Since I’ll already be in my friend’s area, the extra gas to drive to her house will be de minimis. But I know this get-together will cost something, especially if we go out to eat.

Do I stash the entire $98 or do I get together with my friend? I’m leaning towards not getting together since I currently only have $148 in my Christmas fund and I’m seriously behind.


Sallie's Niece said...

Hi Shtinkykat, I've nominated you for an award!

Shtinkykat said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Shtinkykat said...

Thank you for the wonderful honor! I'm new to the wonderful world of blogging so currently, yours and My Debt Blog are the only PF blogs I'm reading on a regular basis. When I find 5 that I really like, I'll pass on this honor. Thanks again, Sallie!