Friday, February 5, 2010

Shopping till I Drop

Grocery store shopping can be a tedious task, but if done
correctly, you can garnish a bit of amusement from it to make it
a bit less boring. I try to look at the setup from a marketing
person's point of view. Since one of my many and varied jobs
over the years has included merchandising, marketing and
product placement, it is fun to see if you can read their minds
when viewing the displays and merchandise.

You really have to wonder why companies put out so many
varieties of the same type of product. I know that giving the
consumer lots of choices means you have a better chance of
gathering some of their money, but at what cost?

For example, how many different flavors\types of toothpaste does
Colgate have to put out? Wouldn't you think that having too
many options would be confusing?

Doesn't it cost them a lot of money to create so many different
varieties of toothpaste? Unless the ingredients are almost
exactly the same, I would think it is too cost-prohibitive to
have to produce all these different types. Wouldn't you think
that if someone is going to buy Colgate Toothpaste, and if they
only have one or two choices, then Colgate will still sell the
same number of units without the expense of re-tooling
everything at the factory? On what basis do consumers choose
between 'Clean Mint' and 'Cool Mint'?

My bride has no brand loyalty. She gets what she has coupons
for. Yes, she does save money, but it takes so much longer.
That's why they send the husbands to the store when you only
need to pick up a few things.

I am not influenced by fancy packaging or sales gimmicks. If she
sends me to get toilet paper, I will grab the first thing I see,
after briefly comparing prices. And if I am supposed to go to
get a lemon, then that's what I come out with.

Only men will be seen in the checkout lane with one or two
items. They buy what they are asked to buy, they go in, and they
get out.

Now what I REALLY hate is when she asks me to pick up some
odd quirky thing that I am not familiar with, such as 'Oriental
mashed Luxor extract'. Do I look in the Ethnic Foods section?
Is it in the Spice section? Maybe in the Cleaning Products and
Light Bulbs aisle?

And what is this stuff?:

Do people actually buy this?
I also found this on the table for discounted items:

Coors NON-ALCOHOLIC beer??? Is there that much of a spread
between that, and normal Coors Light? I should come back later
and see if anyone buys this.

Next, my cell phone rings, and I am asked to pick up some
feminine products. I go over to the aisle and scan the
different choices:

For Heavy Days
For Light Days
For Tues Days
For those days where you want to feel secure...

I am so glad I am not a Female! How do you deal with this?
So I see a woman in the aisle, and tactfully pull her aside.

"Excuse me, but could you talk to my wife and have her tell you
what she needs?" I hand her my cell phone. Thankfully, she
responds favorably instead of calling Security.

Actually they have a nice little chat. The woman listens, then
she goes "Really? No! He did that?" She looks over at me
and starts laughing. She reaches up, grabs a package with frilly
pink writing all over it (for you ladies out there...does the
cutesy pink script really do anything for you?).

She hands me the package, "This is what you need." Then she
smiles and walks away, still chatting on my cell phone. I have
to catch up with her and ask her if I can have my phone back.

She holds up her hand to 'shush' me, still talking. Then she
closes the phone and hands it back to me. I thank her, and,
armed with my feminine product and my Oriental mashed Luxor
extract, I head to the checkout lane.

The clerk gives me a funny look, as if I am weird because I
only have two items. She mentions that they have Coors
Non-Alcoholic beer on sale, but I politely decline. I hope I
wasn't supposed to pick up any Pork Hocks.

Peace be with you.


  1. Such a great blog you have, and I don't get tired of saying it. You put alot of effort into it and it shows. HUGE thumbs up.

  2. Hahaha, that's awesome. Coors non-alcoholic beer... what the heck is the point of that? "for the times in life when you feel like drinking something foul but not getting buzzed."

    FYI clean mint pwns cool mint. It's science.

  3. What the hell is mashed luxor extract???

  4. Thanks, Ian, I learn from the best.

    Jhon, I have been trying to comment on\follow your blog and it hasn't been letting me, but just now it finally let me.

    Your talent is very evident, Mr. T hendrick point exactly! I don't know either!

  5. Oh my hell, I'm laughing my ass of.....(I just got up and put it back on, it comes in handy once it a while)....that is hilarious. My wife signed an agreement before we married...she don't buy my guns, I don't buy her "womanly things" haha.

  6. We are so glad to have you back home safely, Desert Son.

  7. ahahahahahhaha that is so funny!!! There is a ridiculous amount of product on shelves these days. I have limited brand loyalty but a good coupon can change everything.When my hubs goes to the store he keeps me on the phone as he collects each item.
    I love that you got the "ladie's items"... you are a good Dad!

  8. Well your very creative?! Who knew.

  9. The funny thing is there's not much difference between those varieties. They just want to confuse you.

  10. And we were confused today too, Sarah.
    My wife was looking for 'Super Cleaning' because of the coupon, but all they had was 'Extra Cleaning'. Go figure.

  11. I totally agree Joe. When I buy toothpaste, I want everything all-in-one: teeth whitening, tartar control, plaque control, etc. Sometimes I have to figure which one would serve me best.

    And N/A beer? Doesn't that defeat the whole purpose?

  12. Thanks for you Condolences Joe.
    The Funeral was held in Athens Texas...
    Good thing the comments are working...
    Is the follow button working too??

  13. Everything is working now, Jhon.