Deal of the Day October 10, 2008

Want a free haircut?

Well, then.  Just  look for specially marked packages of Herbal Essence shampoo, buy two and you can get a free certificate for one.  Details are here.

That’s a pretty cool promotion, isn’t it?  Theres lots of conditions, but still…

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Deal of the Day October 7, 2008

If you live near a Six Flags park you’re a winner already.

Everyone who enters is a winner, making the Heinz Ketchup if you Can sweeps a great one for anyone who lives near or will visit a Six Flags. Every entrant receives a $10 discount on a one-day admission ticket, and there are 6,010 instant win prizes being given out. This daily entry sweeps ends on November 2. Go ahead and play.  You know you wanna.

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Deal of the Day August 17, 2008

Here’s a good idea for consumptive students:

Sams’s Club is offering college students a break on memberships with their Collegiate Membership. For $40 you all the benefits of an Advantage Membership plus, they’re throwing in a free $15 gift card to get you started on the road to savings. Once signed up, you’ll be able to shop both online and in-stores for all your home or dorm needs. Valid at any local Sam’s Club. Expiration unknown.

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Deal of the Day July 26, 2008

To kick-off the anniversary celebration and in commemoration of National Cheesecake Day on July 30, The Cheesecake Factory restaurants will offer every delicious slice of its more than 30 varieties of cheesecake with a dollop of nostalgia by featuring all cheesecakes at $1.50 per slice, limit one per guest, on that day.

In addition, a special, limited edition cheesecake, the 30th Anniversary Chocolate Cake Cheesecake, will be introduced on July 30 with $0.25 from the sale of each slice sold this year benefiting the national hunger-relief organization, America’s Second Harvest – The Nation’s Food Bank Network. Additional activities will be announced throughout the year.

I’m not a cheesecake fan myself, but I have a feeling Husband will be dropping by…

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Deal of the Day July 21, 2008

Six Flags Theme Parks offers a Big Six pass.  Get six admissions to a Six Flags park by paying little or no more than you pay for a one day ticket! Tickets vary in price from park to park, but it you can save a ton of money! Offer ending unknown.

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Free Isn’t Really Free. A Story Of Mendacious Marketers.

I’ve never responded to an infomercial or any seems-too-good-to-be-true advertisement. I have an inbred skepticism and mistrust for the misleading, exaggerated and even blatantly false statements and assertions these marketers offer as truth.

Husband is much more trusting than I, and it’s a quality I cherish. I’ve had to burst his bubble about the validity of the assertions in infomercials, and it was not fun. I hate to be the one to burst his bubble.

Today Husband came home from work, kissed me on the cheek and handed me a slip of paper. “Find out what the catch is,” he requested. “Some guy bought a a million of those Natural Cure books and is giving them away for free!”

He is, of course, referring to Kevin Trudeau’s book Natural Cures ‘They’ Don’t Want You to Know About, which is being hawked by Trudeau ad nauseum all over the infomercial airwaves.

He’d heard a commercial on the radio about this free offer (radio commercial assertion bubbles are apparently still intact), and I was pleased to see that his first comment (“See what the catch is…”) means that he’s trying to grow a little bit of skepticism. Be still my heart.

“Hon,” I said, “It’s Kevin Trudeau – the smarmy infomercial guy! Besides, I’m positive it’s not free. They’re probably going to charge something like $9.95 for shipping and handling or something…”

“That’s why I want you to call!” he reasoned.

Sigh.

So I call. Lo and behold, there is a shipping and handling charge. And it’s $9.95. Am I good, or am I great?

I politely ask why they charge $9.95 for shipping when the media mail rate is only about $3. I smile as he hems and haws, telling me he’s never been able to mail a book for that little with anyone. I explain about media mail rates, and he tells me I’m wrong and counters with having to pay the people that pack and ship it. I don’t push it. I just wanted to have some fun…

Besides, Husband is on a tear to find ways to outsmart his diabetes, and he really wants the book. So I turn my brain off and give them my credit card number so I can have $9.95 worth of uselessness sent to me.

And then the real push for the real product begins…

They offer me a $25 gift certificate to WalMart and a $25 prepaid gas card for free if I agree to try out their two great money saving programs. The programs will save me money on groceries, gift cards, hotels, Carnival Cruises, and all I need to do is pay $1 each for the two clubs for a thirty day trial period. I can cancel at any time in the first thirty days if I’m not satisfied. If I decide to keep my memberships I’ll be charged the low, low price of $16.95 per month if I don’t cancel.

They don’t ask me if I want it – they tell me, “Of course you’ll be taking advantage of that…”

“No, thank you.” I say.

I immediately am treated to another sixty second treatise of the wonders of these two programs, ending with an equally conspiratorial encouragement from my buddy to start saving now.

“No, thank you.”

But he’s sure I don’t mean that. After all, how can I be sure I don’t want the programs until I’ve read everything about them? He didn’t stop to hear my answer to that question (The same way I’m sure I don’t want to join the Bigfoot Field Researchers Organization…) but went into the spiel again.

“No thank you.”

But I can’t possibly be understanding the wondermous offer that’s being presented to me. Repeat spiel.

“No, thank you.”

He’s sure if I just read the materials… At this point I ask Husband if he’s following this. He tells me to hang up…

“No, thank you.”

When he starts again I say, “How many times are we going to do this?”

“Do what?” he asks, though he knows exactly what I mean.

“Go back and forth with me politely declining and you politely trying to change my mind.”

“But you just don’t understand,” he begins. “No, YOU don’t understand,” I interrupt. “I do not want to join. I want the book I ordered and nothing more, please.”

“But that doesn’t make sense,” he continues. “You have to read the materials to decide if you want it or not.”

“Look,” I say. “If the next words out of your mouth are not ‘Thank you for your order. Have a nice day…’ I am going to cancel my order completely.”

You can’t tell me what to say!

“Please cancel my order.” I am, after all, a woman of my word.

I’m just doing my job,” he protests as he cancels the order.

“I understand. That’s why I’ve been polite. Now, by canceling the order, I’m doing my job.”

After I got off the phone I googled the names of the two discount companies they were trying to get me to join: EZ Saver and American Leisure. Charges of unauthorized billings are numerous.

Bubbles burst: One.

Bullets dodged: Two. Three if you count the useless material in Kevin Trudeau’s book.

At least I have some ideas about what to get Husband for Father’s Day.

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