Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Two Free Bennys.

Do you ever wonder how effective cereal box promotions are?

"Send in three UPCs and $1.95 for shipping and handling and you, too, can be the proud owner of a Florida Marlins baseball helmet cereal bowl."

A few months ago I was in the cereal aisle doing my typical scan for yellow price tags that indicate crazy good, or at least better than $6/box, deals on the stuff and the deal du jour happen to be Kellogg's Raisin Bran.

I threw a few boxes in the cart and was on my way. It wasn't until I got home and read the promotion on the boxes as I lifted them from bag to cupboard that I realized it was for a free DVD. Period. No strings attached (well, there are always strings. I'm definitely in a database of cheap-os somewhere.). No shipping fees. Nada.

And score - The Sandlot was one of the options. Clearly, the prospect of Benny "the Jet" Rodriguez (oh, how we used to swoon...) showing up in my mailbox in 30-90 days was worth buying another box or two of cereal to round out the requisite 5 DVD "tokens."

So I did it. And I was not ashamed.

I noticed the deal was still going when Kellogg's went on sale again, so I grabbed a few more boxes and commenced another 5 token collection.

I am not too proud to admit that two tokens awaiting three more companions made the move last fall. Yes. I, Allison Riley, made a concerted effort to safeguard two pieces of cardboard cut from a cereal box in the midst of moving all our earthly possessions from one end of Manhattan to the other.

I am a little too proud to easily admit I felt a distinct moment of dejection when I realized too late we'd tossed a box before cutting out the token.

But victory comes to those who persist (and evidently to those who consume unnatural amounts of cold cereal...) and yesterday, I hit my token quota.

The scene was just as ridiculous as you might imagine. Maybe worse.

A girl in a tailored suit and heels, working intently at her desk in an office somewhere in the heart of the Big Apple. Checking "Benny and Joon" on a cardboard order form whose reverse side bears a portion of what used to be the Frosted Mini Wheats logo and neatly sliding five colorful cardboard tokens into an envelope bound for a P.O. box in Battle Creek.

I felt a little foolish during my 10-floor descent and kept the envelope pressed against my chest as I crossed the lobby to the mail slot so nobody would notice "Free DVD Giveaway" scrawled across its fibers in red ink. I blushed and laughed at myself a little as I dropped the watermarked envelope into the slot, knowing full-well the rest are likely to show up written in crayon.


Natalie | The Bobby Pin said...

LOL... so every month or so we have these promotions at work, where if you buy a coca cola, you might win free zoo tickets or something.

A lot of them come in crayon.

Well, because there has to be a "no purchase necessary" option, we also allow people to fill out a post card and send it in. And because we're lazy, and have a hard time picking between the 10 we get - we just send them all tickets.

I keep trying to tell my friends, send it in!!

I never turn down anything free.

koryn said...

I would have braved even more humliation just to have The Sandlot in my possesion (I bought mine at WalMart - $5 - humliating). Your stories, as always, bring joy to my days. Thanks for sharing how real you are underneath all that New York Cool and Awesomness (or is it Attractivness?)

Sarah & Trent said...

Yeahhhh girl! That's right. I bought a ton of cereal the other day to get my free milk with 4 boxes, and then I had a $5 off coupon on top of that. I was glowing with pride. I think we could eat cereal for months now.
I talked to Megan! I gave her Amy's contact info (Noah knows Amy from USU too)~ to check out the SLC VZW internship.

Cliff, Kendal and Stone said...

you are just too funny! i love reading your blog....always entertaining!

Melissa said...

No way!!! Seriously, we were SO meant to be friends, because I discovered the very same Kellogg's giveaway via the Club Crackers box, and I have been secretly hoarding them slowly in hopes to acquire my very own copy of Sandlot. Yes, the same movie. I however have been much slower in my acquisition skills, so you are inspiring me to be more aggressive in my efforts. Oh Al, we should be next door neighbors! I love that we think the same in little things like that! So funny!! Let's hang out. Soon. The phone call I owe you is headed your way soon!

Ashley said...

What is it about us Furniss girls that makes us so CHEAP!! I did get a chuckle out of this, enjoy your movies! Be sure to pick out J in the swimming pool scene :)

Drae said...

You are so funny! I love reading about your adventures, but I'm secretly jealous of your amazing frugalness! Part of me wishes you would have written in crayon, just for fun. I'm going to do that next time. So glad we're friends!

Rileys said...

Great minds think alike. Our first free one was Sandlot and the one on its way is.... Benny and Joon!

Kami said...

Umm...I may have fallen pray to the cereal box/movie deal. And it may or may not have coerced me into buying unnatural amounts of cereal for a single gal. Do not be ashamed...I'm trying not to be!

Whitney said...

and that is one reason among many why i love ya! hahaha. awesome. i think maybe you should have done it in crayon.

i am so jealous the boys got to spend time with you! spencer kept telling us how nice you both were and just a really great couple. i have to whole heartily agree!

lauren said...

love this post. and trust me, benny the jet rodriguez is WORTH it.

i believe i can recite the entire movie by heart.