In which I take seriously my charge to stimulate the local economy

Happy tax day, my fellow Americans! My tax refund was much bigger than normal this year - I would say by about $500! Boo-yah!

As a patriotic American with no real debt other than my car payment, I've decided to take this extra $500* and use it the American way: to participate in the age-old tradition of conspicuous consumption!

*The amount of my normal refund will go into savings; I'm not completely reckless.

But here's the deal: All $500 is going to be spent in local businesses. No video games from Amazon; no new TV from Wal-Mart, no pretty, pretty dresses from Target (hmm, maybe I should rethink this). I want to feel like my money is packing as big a punch as possible, and I think the best way to do that is to go local.

Let's see how far this $500 goes.

UPDATE. Here's my completed series.

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