Saturday, January 1, 2011

The Strange Story of Coupon Mike

I'm kicking off the New Year with a new blog. The main purpose of "The Coupon Whisperer" won't be to provide hot coupon tips, although I will be doing that. The primary purpose of this blog is to provide you with entertaining "war stories" from the field. Think of it as adventures in couponing. And so we start off with our first story...the strange story of Coupon Mike...

I met Coupon Mike earlier this year at his job when I was introduced to him by a mutual friend, who worked at the same place, because of our common interest in couponing. Upon meeting Coupon Mike, I must say I was very impressed by him. Rarely have I seen a more animated person. Coupon Mike had over the top enthusiasm about couponing which was highlighted by his wildly gesticulating arms, wide sparkling smile, and bright eyes as he happily related many of his couponing tips to me which I did my best to absorb as they tumbled out of his mouth at a furious pace. He was particularly enthusiastic about couponing at Walgreens and I have to credit Coupon Mike with sparking my interest in that store since I had mostly ignored it prior to meeting him. Since Coupon Mike proved to be a wealth of couponing information, I visited him several more times at this workplace and he always eagerly provided me the information that I sought which was much appreciated by me.

And then I met him out in the field... It was inside a grocery store where I spotted Coupon Mike filling up his shopping cart.

"HELLO, MIKE!" I happily chirped. "Doing some couponing today?"

He looked over at me but something about him seemed different. It was as if a balloon had been almost completely deflated. Gone was his previous enthusiasm and extroverted self-confidence to be replaced with someone with a diffident hunched over posture. Instead of his normal booming voice, something like a frightened whisper said:

" I can't talk now. Have to leave right away."

The change in Coupon Mike was shocking and I soon found out the reason when he introduced his wife. I can't remember her name but the impression she gave was the angry Eye of Sauron which is what I shall call her. She never said a word to me following that introduction. The only response she gave to me after I said hello to her was an angry death ray glare. The Eye of Sauron effect was accentuated by the fact that at nearly 6 and a half feet tall, she towered over both Coupon Mike and me. Anyway, no matter how much I tried to get Coupon Mike to talk shop, he persisted in timidly warning me away about how he had no time or that he had an appointment somewhere.

Okay, perhaps Coupon Mike was having a bad day. We all do. And, in fact, a couple of weeks later when I saw Coupon Mike back at work he was back to his old self again. Wildly gesticulating as he described the latest coupon deals he found.

Then a few weeks after that, I again spotted Coupon Mike at another store...accompanied by the Eye of Sauron. And again, Mike timidly begged me to leave him alone as I thought I was sure to get zapped by an angry ray from the Eye of Sauron. Either that or she would just flat out strangle me. That is how much rage was boiling inside of her.

This pattern repeated itself yet again. I met Coupon Mike at work where he was back to his old happy self only to be followed by a complete metamorphosis when I saw him at the store when he was towered over by the Eye of Sauron.

Finally I showed up at Mike's workplace but not to see him about more valuable coupon tips. My purpose was to question my friend what the deal was with the Eye of Sauron. I figured maybe it was something I did or said that so enraged her. Fortunately my friend assured me that it wasn't my fault. It turns out that the Eye of Sauron just hates EVERYONE. However, this makes me more curious. If someone hates everyone, how does that person even survive socially? In fact, how did the incredibly friendly Coupon Mike end up being married to the Eye of Sauron? How did they first meet? Also how do you get attracted to a woman who hates everyone and lets it be known with her perpetual Eye of Sauron death ray stare? Perhaps I'll never find out the answers to those questions but I must say that I do appreciate the friendly coupon advice that Coupon Mike has given me...when he is out of range of the Eye of Sauron.


And now for a hot coupon tip of the week. Starting on January 2, Walgreens has a $9 register rewards when you buy a 6-pack of Oscillococcinum Flu Medicine at $8.99. On top of that the January Walgreens coupon book is supposed to have a $5 coupon for that same item so when you pay $3.99 out of pocket, you get $9 back to spend on almost whatever you want. Since I have had a lingering on and off cold since Thanksgiving weekend, I think I'll give this medicine a try. You can't beat the price which amounts to FREE plus $5 net back.

UPDATE: The Oscillococcinum Flu Medicine deal didn't work. See, the medicine that gives the Register Rewards is for CHILDREN'S Oscillococcinum and the $5 coupon in the WAGS January booklet is ONLY for the adult version. However, no big deal since I heard that stuff is not much better than a placebo. PLUS I did some QUICK research at Walgreens today when that deal fell through and came up with an even BETTER deal that worked perfectly for me. Here is how it works:

Buy OMEGA FACTOR 3 premium blend 1300 mg fish oil pills (tuna & krill). They sell for 10 bucks but when you buy it, you get $10 back in register rewards. So what to do with that $10 back? Well, the big boxes of Colonnaide 14 day programs is selling for $29.99 but with in the January WAGS there is a coupon for $20 off that product. Soooo....use the $10 register rewards from the Omega Factor 3 (plus the WAG coupon) and you get it FREE! Great deal but in my case I don't need it since I already had the Fantastic Voyage routine (sans Raquel Welch) done on my colon and everything in there was A-OK. In my case, I used the $10 register rewards to buy 2 DiGiorno Supreme pizzas which were on sale for...$10. Therefore FREE! Plus I used the WAG sales sheet coupon to get 4 Progresso Soups for $5. Then used a couple of $2 register rewards I had on my person to buy all those soups for just a buck. I actually could have gotten it free but I didn't feel like scrambling outside to my van to look for a $1 RR that I knew was sitting in an envelop.

So let's look at my shopping trip. Didn't get that flu medicine like I thought but I quickly switched gears and used a $10 RR I already had to score a FREE bottle of Omega Factor 3 premium blend fish oil pills (which I take everyday) then rolled the $10 that generated to score 2 free DiGiorno pizzas. Plus got myself 4 cans of Progresso soup using $4 in Register Rewards that I had from last week. Total out of pocket for all that...a buck.

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