November 17, 2009
The Free Turkey
My grocery store runs a special promotion every November. If you spend $300 in qualifying purchases, you get a certificate for a free turkey that feeds 4-6 people.
To my horror, I realized at 11:15pm on the last day of the promotion that I was short of the target by $60.
"Please tell me you are not going to the grocery store right now," said my husband. He said this in a way that made my midnight shopping trip seem ridiculous and even unnecessary.
The truth of the matter was that I wouldn't have been able to sleep that night or live with myself the next day if I knowingly let the opportunity pass me by.
I filled my shopping cart with dry cereal.
"That sure is a lot of Honeycomb," observed the man standing in line behind me.
Despite cleaning out the store's stock of generic brand Cheerios, I still found myself $5.64 short at check-out.
A wave of panic rushed over me. Thankfully, the cashier was moved to mercy.
"I'll just give you the certificate for the turkey," the woman whispered. "You're close enough."
With the voucher in my hand, I felt redeemed.
"Thank you," I whispered back.
The woman smiled and looked at her watch, which was fast approaching the time of the store's closing. "Clearly it's important to you," she replied.
As I loaded the sixteen boxes of cereal into my trunk, my heart swelled with happiness and joy. I couldn't help but feel cheered by the discovery of a kindred spirit, another person who seemed to understand the logic of expending great sums of money and time to get an object for "free" that can be purchased for less than $20.
Any more kindred spirits out there?