Thursday, June 08, 2006

A Triumph of Frugality

Being a regular customer at H-E-B Central Market on North Lamar, I receive a monthly mailer of coupons that gives me something free if I spend $40 or more in the store. Unfortunately, beer and wine don't count.

This week's coupon gives you $10 off on PGA All-Natural Beef. I think the butcher there hates me because I always ask him to give me as close to $10 of meat as possible (which isn't a whole lot when you're talking about PGA).

As I cruise through the store, I'm mentally tabulating the sum total of my purchases. This isn't easy because math gives me a stomach ache. My objective is to come as close to $40 as possible. I know H-E-B sends out those coupons with the idea of compelling people to spend much more than that, but I won't let them sucker me into buying a bunch of foodstuffs I don't need.

Yesterday, my bill came to $39.89. I felt a pang of embarrassment as I started thinking of having to hold up the rush hour checkout line by running back for one more item. Then the checker hit the tax button. My only taxable item was a $1.29 box of coffee filters, but that carried a tax of 11 cents. Amazingly, my grand total with the $10 coupon came to exactly $40.

It's too bad I didn't have music from The Price is Right on my iPod to commemorate my triumph of frugality. I told the checker I felt like I'd just bowled a perfect game. I still haven't come down.


stacey said...

That is freaking amazing! I'm always enticed by the candy and chocolates near the checkout and end up spending at least 45. Well done!

Karla said...

I miss the days where $40 got me a week's worrth of groceries.

here in Norway, $40 gets you milk, bread, salad, a half pound of chicken and maybe some cheese.

Grrr. And they have never heard of coupons. Or sackers. OR customer service for that matter.

me? Bitter? nah.