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Do You Remember What You Bought With Your First Paycheck?

Topics: Data & Research

We can all remember our very first job. For me, it was 2004 and I was working as a cashier and stocker at a local drugstore chain in my small hometown in Oklahoma. I was paid a competitive $5.25 an hour, and it was enough for a high school freshman to be excited about. For my first two weeks of work, I had earned myself a whopping $120 paycheck. And with my riches, I went to the nearest Wal-Mart, where I purchased my own $90 television. The best part is that $90 piece of teenage pride and clunk is still in full use today at my mother’s house. In a recent AskReddit, Redditors were asked what they had bought with their first paychecks. Some of the stories will make you laugh and some will pull at your heartstrings. Find out for yourself.

(Photo Credit: GotCredit/Flickr)

Lunch at Taco Bell, $20

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Reddit user VeryReady shared that his family had never been blessed financially. Growing up, OP reports struggling to find enough money to eat at lunch at school. OP also notes that if his parents ever did have the money, he knows they would have spoiled him.

“When I got my first paycheck in high school, I snuck $20 into my mom’s and dad’s empty wallets. I knew they needed it. The very next day while I was at work, my mom called me and asked if I wanted to eat lunch during my break. ‘Taco Bell!’ she said. I met up with her and we ordered together. My mom says ‘Lunch is on me!’. She smiled brightly and pulled out a bill from her wallet, the $20 bill. To this day, I haven’t told her I put that money in there but she has no idea how much she touched my heart. The first person she thought of was her son.

1GB Hard Drive (in 1996), $250

It may not have been his very first paycheck, but for nostalgia’s sake, let’s pretend that it was. User LikeChicken says, “It wasn’t exactly my first paycheck, but I remember being very excited to purchase a 1GB hard drive in 1996. It was $250. ONE GIGABYTE!”

Pager, Under $500

We don’t have a date for this, but based on the subject being a pager, I’m going to assume with good judgment this was sometime in the ’90s. User PorkPants81 says, “I bought a pager when I was 16. I didn’t realize that there were monthly fees for it. They didn’t have my address or anything … I never paid a bill and it stayed on for over a year.”

Hardee’s, Around $8

For anyone who works in fast food, you’re probably all too familiar with the perils of eating where you work. User Tswaggydaddy is, too. “My first job was at Hardee’s, the first paycheck I got, I spent at Hardee’s. Freaking Hardee’s.”

[Reddit comments have been lightly edited.]

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What did you buy with your very first paycheck? We want to hear from you! Comment below or join the discussion on Twitter!

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Food, real food, I was so excited I could get food andit felt good.
Oh I was a box person for Vons Grocery strore in 1981
not fast food, not prepackaged food, but something to cook and sink my teeth into. then Oh I bough a chocolate bar the next day… big spender I was on a 3.65 cents per hour. wow that was such a awesome feeling, I almost want to cry becasue something so basic was so important to me.

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