The strong emotions behind this rant are kind of gone, so I saved it for a Sunday when I know people are much busier with church and naps and not my rambling.
It’s about the crazy coupon people. This is delicate, because I have a cousin who has a thriving coupon-saving website and I don’t want to say that I think she’s crazy, because I believe she’s actually quite sane.
The trouble started early in the week when I read this article about a woman who gives workshops on how to use coupons to their best advantage and how she went to a CVS to get some stuff and all the toilet paper was gone – purchased by her newly-informed students. Apparently toilet paper is a big ticket item – you can use coupons and then in-store credit and manage to get it for free. I liked how the article described new super-coupon-users as ‘baby vampires’ because they suck the savings up willy-nilly with no self-control.
Then, in my own life, I ran out of milk and started to use up as much of our personal food hoard as possible, noticing all the while that we had all this food that was years past the expiration dates. That has been mortifying because it’s so very, very wasteful.
Then one evening I watched Extreme Couponing – a show that was much like Hoarders, only in a very organized fashion. These people have rooms and rooms and rooms of laundry detergent, toilet paper, bath items, boxes and cans and bottles of food that would make a church’s food pantry pale in comparison. It was insane! The last man they showed was going on his Best Shopping Trip Ever and bought over $5,000 worth of items for around $250. I was glad that a large portion of that – a couple of dozen crates of free cereal – he purchased for his own church’s food pantry, but not the cart of toothbrushes and the other cart of deodorants.
I am hyperventilating with the memory. It made me angry. They were buying gobs of stuff that they couldn’t possibly use up in 10 years!
Huh. I guess my strong emotions aren’t gone. So, to sum up, I think that reckless couponing to buy items just to have a bunch of stuff for free – without a definite vision of if or when it will get used – is crazy gluttony.
I also understand that I’m incredibly hypocritical about this. I totally love getting stuff at a deep discount and I understand the adrenaline rush those people must feel. I also have an ungodly amount of food in the basement that we all know has gone unused. (I’ve had potatoes rot into a putrid puddle of awfulness.) So I think this is one of those galvanizing moments in life. I think that I won’t be buying so much in bulk unless I am sure that it’s going to get used up. Fortunately I’m pretty set in my cooking habits now, so I know that nobody in this house is ever going to eat canned clam chowder or cup-o-noodles, and I never, ever finish a container of powdered beverage items, so hopefully some of these mistakes can be avoided.
Whew. I bet nobody read this to the end. I know I didn’t. 🙂