*Not* Buyers Remorse


I have never suffered much from the pangs of “buyer’s remorse.”  Perhaps it is a result of me being such a studious financial choice-maker, but the truth is that my spending interests are fairly narrow, relieving me from a lot of this risk.  There are simply a lot of areas of contemporary life where I make no outlay.  No tobacco.  Virtually no alcohol.  I do not tend towards gastronomic excesses (other than bitter chocolate).  Fashion?  Right; since I have a lumberjack’s store and a shoe store bookmarked, I spend almost sixty seconds a year buying my wardrobe, and  then get only what I want.  Luxury goods?  Pshaw.  Indulgent vacations to exotic places?  To me this sounds like something akin to Dante’s Seventh Circle of Hell.

The two areas where I do often purchase extravagantly are books and tools.  Addiction therein is too strong a word, probably.  Since books always contain useful information, even if they do not possess the snippet I was searching for I recognize their ability to contribute to my breadth and depth of knowledge.  Tools?  Since they have the inherent character to increase my skills and capacity for production, I have never regretted buying a tool, even if it is surpassed by a tool more capable than the previous one.

Which brings me to the item of this post – a beautiful ebony and boxwood scrub plane I did NOT buy recently.  You see, I am more inclined towards “Didn’t Buy It” remorse.

That miniature set of playing cards made from engraved ivory, housed in a carved tortoiseshell box.

The 5 1/2 acres next door.

That ’64 Chevelle SS, all original with 30,000 honest-to-goodness little-old-lady miles.

This ebony plane might be close to that camp.  On our way from Kansas City en route to, eventually, Cincinnati recently we stopped at an isolated antique mall, and there it was.  A classic horned scrub plane, identical in form to my beech model resting on the shelf.  Only this one had a body of a SOLID BLOCK OF GABOON EBONY, with the horn of carved boxwood.  At $120 the price was more than fair.  But the fact is I did not NEED it, so I passed it by.  (But I did buy a NOS Stevie Ray Vaughan-style felt Stetson for $35 in the original box, which I gave back to the antique mall as space was too tight in the truck.)


Over time this ebony plane may take its place alongside the ivory and tortoiseshell playing card ensemble, the ’64 Chevelle, the acreage next door.  But in the end I decided that the one I had was perfectly serviceable, and got back into the truck and hit the road.

No, I will not tell you where it was just in case I change my mind.