For the fifth year in a row, Massachusetts will have a tax-free weekend (August 16-17, 2008). The Boston Business Journal reports on this event here: http://www.bizjournals.com/boston/stories/2008/07/28/daily52.html
I go back and forth on my enthusiasm for tax-free weekends. Sometimes it just seems ridiculous...the state loses income and the stores are mobbed with people spending money that they might not have spent at all. And, unless you're buying a really big ticket item, you're really not saving a whole lot of money.
On the other hand, with the current cost of gas and food being on a sharp rise lately, saving a few dollars here and there is nothing to sneeze at these days.
I'm sorely tempted to join the mad rush this year for a couple of big items...new refrigerator and dishwasher. The fridge is about 20 years old and needs new gaskets. Half my food freezes and half doesn't. It's annoying...you go to make a nice egg cream and discover the seltzer is frozen into a solid block of ice. And it just doesn't make sense to get it fixed, since it's so old.
The dishwasher is also old, about 15 years old. It doesn't clean as well as it used to and and the flimsy soap dispenser thingy is broken ...the little door that supposed to open automatically doesn't. The soap just gets stuck in there. Again, annoying. I've tried to figure out who to adjust the spring mechanism that controls the little door, to no avail.
I'm sulking about the refrigerator because I don't think I can get the one I want -- not enough space under my cabinets and I'm NOT moving the cabinets. I need them. Why do we have to have refrigerators that are SOOO tall? I wanted a fridge with a bottom freezer and french doors. But, they're all about 2 inches too tall. I'm bummed. I may have to back down and get one without the lovely french doors. It's just not fair.
The dishwasher should be an easy decision. I'll just ask my Dad which one they have and get the same. I've found that relying on Dad to do the research and actual testing works well for me and saves me gobs of time :-)