Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Checking Out

Soooo...I promised a new post this past weekend...and now it's Tuesday. Sounds about right!

I once again found myself avoiding the impulse purchase at Wal Mart today. It's actually getting easy now. I guess practice really does make perfect! But the more I avoid picking things up on impulse, the more attention I find myself paying to the way stores market their wares. Today, for example, I was really intrigued by the stuff at the checkout.

You know the things I'm talking about. The array of reading material, with candy underneath, and across the way, the racks of...everything. Those odds and ends that just sort of end up being the things we'd maybe grab on our way out, thinking they'll come in handy. There are lighters, dangly air fresheners for the car, glue sticks. That kind of thing. I can remember once buying a keychain that doubled as a miniature tire pressure gauge. The thing was too small to handle, let alone uncap and stick in my tire (handy really, since I rarely check the pressure of my tires!). But for some reason, standing at that checkout stand waiting for the guy in front of me to write the girl a cheque (does anyone actually write cheques anymore?!), I got it into my head that I really needed one of these things, and the outrageous $10 they were asking for it was a great deal!

And then there's the magazines. It used to be entertaining to read the covers. It was even more entertaining to find something that looked so good, I just had to spend the $7 to bring it home with me. A week later, it'd be in the recycle box waiting for someone else to take it off my hands. And the headlines. My God! Seriously, when Cosmo claims to have the inside scoop on what men really want in bed, they actually just walked out to the front of the building and found a bunch of idiots who were willing to blab their sexual fantasies to a complete stranger! "Steve, Investment Banker, 29" is probably someone they found peeing behind the dumpster.

The candy issue should really be a no-brainer. But, that too, I had to learn the hard way. Before I had kids, I'd hit the grocery store after work, tired and hungry. On my way through the checkout, which was always interminably slow, I'd convince myself one chocolate bar wouldn't hurt. Back then, I was 30 lbs heavier than I am now.

The moral of the story here is that when you're in line waiting to pay for something, you need to stare straight ahead and do everything you can not to look at all that crap they're trying to trick you into buying. Actually, stare at the cashier. It'll probably scare her into moving faster.

And thank you to Jen at the wonderful blog I'm Just Jen. Take it or Leave it for this fantastic award!

I'm loving all this award action lately (it's true. I'm an attention junkie), but I'm not finding a lot of time to pass them on, so one day I'm going to write a massive post awarding all kinds of blogs with all kinds of awards. Just not today!


laterg8r said...

congrats on the award :D

i just try to avoid going to stores all together LOL :D

Éimí said...

congrats on your award...my problem right now with impulse buying is that...I work in the mall...I see every sale, at every store, every day...not fair. I don't have the self control for this *sigh*

Tater Tot Mom said...

Found behind the dumpster...hilarious! It's so hard to resist that stuff...my things are magazines and gum. I just love gum and I'm always buying different kinds.

Janine said...

You deserve that award Wendy!! Well done!!
My new impulse buys- fabric...I have been reaquainted with the sewer in me and will not stop until I have made a quilt!
May take several decades but why not!!?

Deb Neerman said...

Congratulations on the kewl blog award! So well deserved!

Is online craft shopping considered 'impulse shopping?' If so, I'm totally an impulse shopper. Funny, I do much better in real stores!

Tamara aka Cheapskate Mom said...

Try working at Target! I swear it took me months to stop bringing stuff home every time I worked! I now bring something home like once a week, lol

They actually have a marketing plan to get people to spend like $2.50 more than they planned to. It doesn't sound like much but when you figure all the Target stores across the country $2.50 a head is HUGE! They are putting products in places that tempt the eye to buy things people weren't planning to buy. It's pretty interesting the stuff I am learning!

Stephanie Faris said...

I've got another award later in the week for you...I'm working on the blog now!

MOMSWEB said...

LOL! This was so funny and I'm so happy I can't relate. I'm such a penny pincher, but it's probably because I only have a penney.

I LOVE the suggestion you left on teenagers. Hmmm...I wonder if I can do that for the next four years (lol). It's worth a try and my blood pressure might lower.