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Have you ever met my husband, Randy?
Maybe you’ve read his post about a memory from his younger years as a boy growing up on a farm, or marveled at his talent as the Singing Muffin Man, or the hand behind Slocum, the singing puppet shadow dog? Maybe? Well, if not, he’s back to share some thoughts with you today.
I’m on the hunt these days for a retailer who will sell me some stuff at a decent price without trying to set me up with one of those stinkin’ bonus or rewards cards. It never fails, I try to run in to grab some shaving cream, herbicide, and peanut M&M’s, then the nice clerk rings me up, and kindly asks, “Are you a member of our rewards club?”
I’ll admit, that question hits close to home. You see I didn’t have the means to own a Members Only jacket back in the day and it still stings. A small part of me wants to be a member of a club, for a little redemption.
Next comes the, “Would you like to sign up today and receive a 20% discount?”
It’s not like I can refuse. I’d feel like such a snob leaving 20% on the table. Plus that Scots Irish frugality runs awfully deep.
Wising up I reply, “How about you give me the discount and I keep my anonymity?”
“Silly man. It’ll only take a minute. Just give us your SS# and mobile phone number, and I promise we won’t compromise your privacy. We’ll just track your spending and eating habits and constant whereabouts so we can serve you better.”
I usually relent then feel dirty afterward.
Instead, this is how it should work…
Mr. Retailer, we’ll engage in a mutually beneficial business transaction. I’ll give you my money in exchange for your stuff and I get the lowest price without regard to my club affiliations. That’s as far as I’ll go. I may or may not come back to your store. We’re all free agents here.
Who’s with me?!?
And while I’m at it, how would I keep up with all those key chain things with the bar codes anyway? I’m certainly not going to put them on my key chain. What goes in your pocket says a lot about who you are: pocketknife, Chapstick, tire gauge, quail feather. I don’t want to be reminded every time I take my car keys out that, yes, I’m a Food Trough® Club Member. No thank you Mr. Retail Store. I’m just not that into you.
So here’s what I’m thinking. Next time some store tries to snag me into their rewards program, I’m going to present the store manager with my own store loyalty application. In exchange for the store completing my application, including the SS# and mobile phone number of the company CEO, I’d be willing to pay the asking price for the items in my shopping cart. If they refuse to complete the form, I’ll offer to pay only 80% of the value in my cart.
What’s good for the goose? No?
I’ll let you know how it goes.
I stopped doing this a while ago too, most stores have a “courtesy card” at all the registers that they can scan instead so you can “get the deals.” You just have to know to ask…
Granted I’ve noticed some stores don’t (mostly the drugstores) but I don’t shop there enough to bother carrying around one of those silly keytags.
I have a little pouch where I keep those annoying cards. I agree with your feelings about the cards but have saved some of them anyway.
I could have written this post. I hate the idea that these retailers have to have our personal info so we get the best price when we shop there. So I made one up. Which is great in multiple ways. I will never get solicited in my mailbox or inbox if/when they decide to take my personal (albeit fake) information and get in touch. Whoo hoo.
Now could you write a piece on my biggest gripe. Trying to sell me an additional warranty on a brand new product I’m buying. I mean…really…you are asking me to pay more because you know your stuff is crap and I basically need insurance? OY!!
I agree with the members cards..I”M HERE! JUST GIVE ME THE DISCOUNT!
Oh my goodness! Count me in!!
I’m with ya, Randy. It’s getting a little out of hand!
Randy, Laura showed me this post. And I, too, was never a ‘Members Only’. Instead, I got the distinct honor to join the ‘Off-brand Members Only Club.’
Do you know what it’s like to know… just KNOW there’s a jacket in that box under the Christmas tree? To know that it’s all you really wanted and that no other gift was gonna live up to it? To have sat under the tree and shaken it every day for weeks up to the big opening? To have practiced shoving up the long sleeves on your sweatshirt jackets just so you’d be ready to sport your new chick magnet the right way…. the way it was meant to be worn? To rip into it with the vigor of a tiger slaying it’s prey on Christmas morning….
….only to see that…. sure….. it looks like a Members Only…… it’s even the right maroon color…… ah yeah…. all those snaps are perfectly looped on the shoulders…. but wait a minute….. what’s that on the black tag?!!!! The tag looks too short to fit the words ‘Members Only’ on it….. Let me pop in my contacts to get a better look …. Oh no…… It doesn’t say ‘Members Only’ at all!!!! It says:
Still hurts to be ‘Pony Boy Troy’. I hate my parents.
Thanks for sharing. I feel… well…. healed a little.
Troy, you left off the best part. Randy, you must call Troy and hear the whole story first hand…