Bible Verse

Beg as loud as you can for good common sense. Proverbs 2:3

Friday, February 28, 2014

What’s the Deal With Shipping and Handling?

I once read an article that said that people closely watch the actual price of an item they see on TV.  If the price is okay, they order it.  They don’t care about the shipping and handling.

We’ve all seen the commercials.  They offer you the moon, then double the offer, then add one or two additional items, then give you a price + S&P.  I may be just a bit slow and/or blind, but I don’t see any number for the S&P.  But I suspect, being the cynic that I am, that it’s going to be pretty high or they would splash it around on their commercials.

I think we can all agree that a lot of these sellers are making quite a profit on handling fees. 

I looked up a few of these as-seen-on-TV products to find out what they’re charging.  One site offered 2 large and 2 mini cleaning towels for $19.95 plus shipping and handling.

“But wait!  That’s not all!”  (Have you ever noticed that everything they say ends in an exclamation mark?)

They double the offer and throw in a mop “absolutely free, just pay separate $7.95 shipping and handling.”
Did you get that?  $7.95 on something that costs $19.95? It makes me wonder just how little it costs to manufacture these things when they are constantly doubling your order and giving you things you didn’t ask for to begin with.

Maybe I don’t want a  mop.  Did they ever think of that?

And I can tell you fer shure and fer certain that I would not pay an additional $7.95 to mail it to me.
What most people hear is “at no additional cost” and they kind of gloss over the “just pay separate shipping and handling.”

These dealers are obviously making their profit from the S&P.

Even if the towels come from one warehouse and the mop comes from another, does it really take $7.95 to mail each of them?  That little plastic mop can’t weigh that much.  Same for the towels.  I mean, they don’t come in the box all soggy and heavy, do they?

And how much “handling” does a set of towels and a mop need, anyway?  It would probably get more handling at the warehouse than at my house.

And shouldn’t it be “Handling and Shipping”?  I mean, you have to handle first before you ship.  Just a thought…

Beg as loud as you can for good common sense.  Proverbs 2:3 CEV

Friday, February 14, 2014

What’s The Deal With The Luge?

Have you seen the luge competition that’s part of the Winter Olympics?  Words almost fail me.  Almost.

People get on a sled and go shooting down a frozen water slide at over 80 miles an hour, trying to be the fastest one to live through it all the way to the end.  Do you remember the Log Flume ride at 6 Flags Over Georgia?  Picture that with ice all over it.
These people are crazy.  For one thing, they’re not looking where they’re going.  How many times do we have to tell our children to watch where they’re going because something has caught their attention off to the side?  We warn them because if we don’t, they’ll wham right into a wall or a piece of furniture that’s taller than they are.

Apparently, these crazy people had no such guidance as children. 
The first time I saw this competition, there was one woman on her back on a sled with no braking system, feet facing the finish line that was 100 miles away.  The commentator helpfully explained that each competitor could, in fact, see where she’s going and would steer the sled with her shoulders, legs and feet.  You notice he left out her brain.  That’s because it froze years ago while zooming down a frozen water slide.

The slide is a scary thing.  It banks up several times, and apparently it’s bad news if you don’t bank with it.  I’m just hoping their medical insurance is paid up.  They are cruisin’ for a bruisin’ for shure and for certain.
About the time I got used to these crazy ladies, I happened upon another luge competition where two men were on the sled. 

Now, let me give you an accurate picture here.  The first guy was on his back on the sled.  Then the second guy laid on his back on top of the first guy.  Our helpful commentator said that both men steer the sled. 
I don’t know.  Don’t ask me.

I admire all the Olympic athletes for their incredible accomplishments.  And they are all using their God-given talents to the max.  But the luge has got to be one of the weirdest things I have ever seen. 
Well, except that time when David rode a zip line over a lake, let go, and then complained that he thought he had broken his back when he hit the water.  He was serious, but I was skeptical.  He had to walk a good distance just to get to me so that he could complain that he had broken said back.

At least there was no ice on the zip line…

Friday, February 7, 2014

What’s the Deal With Self Check Outs?

If I never see another self check out, it will be too soon.  There is no reason for checkers to worry about losing their job to this horrible invention, as far as I’m concerned.

You see, I thought it couldn’t get any worse than standing in the check out line at Wal-Mart along with 10 other shoppers, one of whom has a screaming child and another who has a wild child tearing up the candy and gum display.  On Christmas Eve.  With snow in the forecast and not a loaf of bread or even a pint of milk to be found.
I was wrong.  Dreadfully, horribly wrong.

My husband is drawn to the self check outs like a bug to a porch light.  Maybe it’s a male thing.  Being in full charge of dragging those bar codes across the pretty red light just right so the female voice (aha! that might be it right there!) says, in a very loud tone, to please bag your item.
But it never fails that at least one item doesn’t ring up right or maybe not at all, so we end up standing around looking pitiful, hoping the one clerk in the area will help us out first instead of the other 4 self check out lines that are stuck because of a similar problem.

And don’t try to check out jewelry by yourself.  And I don’t mean expensive jewelry, either.  One night we waited at least 10 minutes for a supervisor who, the machine said, had to “approve” our purchase.  So when she finally got there, I put the earrings on and said, “So, do you approve of these or not?  Are they really my color?” 
You’ll never convince me that my David is not an optimist.  After he automatically gravitates to the self check outs, he always pulls those items across the glass with a flourish, thinking that nothing can stop him.

Until the nice female voice starts demanding, loudly, that he bag his last item.  Except that he has already bagged his last item.  So he unbags his last item, at which time the voice tells him to rescan his last item.
And I don’t even want to think about putting a 14-pound box of kitty litter in the bagging area.  Sometimes it wants to know about that and sometimes it doesn’t.  Either way, I feel like a cat-litter thief, like I’m too dumb to try to shoplift something a little lighter and a whole lot smaller.

Some of these self-checkers are so small, I had more counter space in our 24-ft camper!  And if you don’t keep moving things along, the voice will repeatedly tell you to bag or scan or whatever it thinks you need the most.
I usually just stand back and let David mess with it since he’s the one who is insisting to use it.  I admire his optimism or maybe it’s just a poor memory that keeps him coming back.

I can usually stand there with my poker face on no matter what happens.  Except when he’s trying to bag something too light to register and he starts this sort of crazy ballet of putting things on the bagger in different combinations, hoping to hit just the right grouping to get the stupid thing to finally ring it up.
Apparently, a laughing wife has no place in this scenario.  Which makes me want to be there all the more…