Save or spend? Or invest in mattress futures?

Marketplace Staff Aug 19, 2011

Save or spend? Or invest in mattress futures?

Marketplace Staff Aug 19, 2011

DAVID BRANCACCIO: I wonder what Shakespeare would have written on savings versus spending through a time of extra uncertainty. Can’t help you with that. But we did call up our friends at LiveWire Radio! in Portland, Ore., for their dramatic take.

HUSBAND: Diane, are you here?

DIANE: Yeah, what’s wrong?

HUSBAND: Nothing’s wrong, honey, everything’s right.

DIANE: What are you talking about — is that your brother out there?

HUSBAND: Yeah, hang on. Hey, Mike, come on in here. Diane, Mike and I figured it out.

DIANE: Figured what out?

HUSBAND: A way out of this financial mess.

DIANE: No, we already found a way, honey, we’re watching our spending, we’re adding to our savings every month. Remember?

HUSBAND: OK, OK, but let me add a wrinkle. The whole savings idea is great, but the Fed just locked interest rates because it’s time to spend.

DIANE: Uh-oh.

HUSBAND: Sweetie, consumer spending is what drives our economy — you’re being un-American.

DIANE: I’m unemployed. That’s about as American as you can get these days.

MIKE: Did you tell her?

HUSBAND: I was just about to. All right, Diane, picture this. We are building a giant mattress.

DIANE: Come again?

HUSBAND: Giant mattress.

MIKE: Remember how during the Great Depression, the banks would say to put your money in? So where did they keep all their money? In a giant mattress!

DIANE: Oh, OK, you bought a giant mattress

HUSBAND: No, silly head, you can’t just buy a giant mattress. It’s not even online. We’re going to build it.

DIANE: Out of what?

HUSBAND: Seven thousand pounds of padding, 30,000 yards of fabric, and all the springs I could get from an abandoned pogo stick factory.

DIANE: OK, what did you use to buy all this?

HUSBAND: Oh just all our credit cards, savings and bonds, and my coin collection and Mike’s kidney money.

MIKE: I’m just glad it went toward a sound investment.

HUSBAND: Hang in there, Mike. Then we put anything we own that’s worth anything into the mattress. Our house, our car, the kids braces.

DIANE: They’re still attached to the kids honey.

HUSBAND: Well, they’ll go in, too — we’ll all go in!

MIKE: Along with the flatscreen TV and the pizza oven we bought to keep us living in mattressy comfort until this all boils over.

DIANE: Oh, Mike’s coming too?

MIKE: Sure am!

DIANE: OK, all right honey, before I hit you in the head with a frying pan — and I will hit you with a frying pan — but before I do, how exactly does spending all of our money solve all of our financial problems?

HUSBAND: I didn’t spend it all so much as invest it — in mattress futures. Our mattress future. Eating delicious brick-oven pizza and watching season two of Dr. Who while encased in 10 feet of soft posturepedic padding to protect us from a financial world gone crazy.

DIANE: Sweetheart, you’ve gone round the bend.

MIKE: I thought it was cool.

DIANE: But you’re a moron.

MIKE: True.

DIANE: All right, we’ll do your plan, but let me add a wrinkle: we don’t do your plan.


DIANE: Listen to me, first you’re going to return everything.

HUSBAND: Everything?

DIANE: Everything except season two of Dr. Who. Then, we’ll order a pizza and we’ll sit on our perfectly soft and comfortable couch
that I don’t want to sit inside of, and discuss any future investments.

HUSBAND: So, you don’t even want to consider panicking?

DIANE: Maybe later.

MIKE: I was really looking forward to moving in with you guys.

HUSBAND: Maybe you still can Mike. Honey?

DIANE: I’m getting the frying pan.

HUSBAND: Mike, run.

DAVID BRANCACCIO: Our Mattress Futures sketch was written, performed and produced by Live Wire! Radio in Portland, Oregon.

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