If you don't know yet, I'll tell you: the Hubs is CHEAP! I mean, REALLY, REALLY cheap. He manages to get free magazine subscriptions, he saves us tons of money on electronics by doing his research and price comparisons, he only buys clothes from the clearance rack WITH a coupon and he will only eat out at restaurants he has coupons for or that have a Dollar Menu he can order from.
That being said, he started bugging me about "Extreme Couponing", I think. He's telling me how we could be getting thousands of dollars of groceries every year for pennies on the dollar if we'd just "clip a couple coupons" like these people.
Today I had a little time so we sat down to watch the show. About halfway through I wanted to punch the Hubs in the throat. If he thinks we're going to do this, he's NUTS.
These people have a SERIOUS problem. I predict they will end up on a very special "Hoarders: Buried Alive Under Reynold's Wrap & Crest Toothpaste". I truly believe these people are mentally ill. The sickest out of the 4 they profiled lives in a 3 bedroom home where 2 of the bedrooms as well as her husband's "man cave" have become stockpile rooms. The 2 bedrooms look pretty organized and tidy with everything arranged neatly on shelves, but the man cave is just piled high with plastic grocery bags. It's like Hoarders Lite in that house. This is the same woman who spent $70 ordering coupons (who the hell even know you could do that??) from a coupon clipping service so she could get 150 candy bars for free. She brags that she spends 70 hours a week couponing. Now, I'm the first to admit that I'm not very good at math, but I got out my trusty calculator and I did some figuring. If you take the 70 hours she spends couponing PLUS the 40 hours she claims to work at a real job that only leaves a little over 8 hours a day for sleeping/eating/socializing/pooping. I just don't think that math adds up! When does she find the time to eat her 150 candy bars?? On shopping day she actually has to take a vacation day from work to spend 6-8 hours at the grocery store. WTF???
I also get irritated when these Extreme Couponers claim how much they save by clipping coupons. None of them take into account the $70-100 they PAY the clipping services. Or the fact that they have 10 newspaper subscriptions so they can get coupons. That's gotta come off your bottom line people - it's an expense. I'm still impressed you managed to get $600 worth of groceries for $90, just don't tell me you only paid $20.
One woman doesn't order coupons she gets them the old fashioned way: Dumpster diving. She even had fancy looking gloves just for her Dumpster diving (I wonder if she used a coupon to buy those).
And don't even get me started on the narrator! "Susie waits nervously for the coupons to start coming off her total. If she's miscalculated anywhere she could end up owing more money than she has brought with her!" Seriously? Have you never gone to checkout at the grocery store and realized you didn't have enough money? It's not like the Manager says, "Put on an apron and start bagging groceries, lady. Someone's gotta pay for that ice cream!" The drama is comical. "Susie starts to sweat. Something's gone terribly wrong. The computer has frozen. What will she do now with her 9 carts of groceries?" Uhhh....walk away and say I'll try again tomorrow? Don't worry, don't worry, it all worked out for Susie. Four store employees put their heads together for 2 HOURS and finally came up with the brilliant plan of splitting her order into more manageable sizes so the computer could handle it. I'm sure Corporate will be happy to see those productive hours!
Hey, I love a sale as much as the next person. I will use a coupon at my favorite stores like Hobby Lobby, Gymboree and Macy's. My problem is, I rarely see a grocery coupon for stuff I like. I don't like Hunt's Ketchup (I'm a Heinz kinda girl) and I don't care if Hunt's will pay me a buck to take it out the store I won't buy it. (Actually, that's not true. If I had 300 Hunt's coupons that I found in a Dumpster and had a grocery store that doubled my coupon and I ended up making money, I'd take the Hunt's out of the store and put it on Craigslist and sell it for half price and make more money 'cause I'd rather make money than save money.)
How much toothpaste can one family need? What are they stockpiling it for?? Are they waiting for Armageddon?? They talk a lot about being able to live off of their cache for one or two years if necessary. Yeah, if all you wanted to eat was deodorant, cat food, Barilla pasta, Gatorade, and Butterfingers.
One person on my Facebook summed it up perfectly: "these people are hoarders and thieves." I agree completely and I have no desire to spend 70 flipping hours a week hoarding and thieving.
In the end, the Hubs and I compromised: anytime he wants to go Dumpster diving for coupons, he's welcome to try it (because I refuse to subscribe to the paper or coupon clipping services) but if he brings home Hunt's Ketchup he has to eat it all.
Where is the line between being a cheap bastard and being frugal? Let me know.
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