Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Coo-pon, Que-pon

Okay, so the title made me giggle, because G swears I say coupon wrong.  And he's probably right, but after nearly 30 years I doubt that's going to change.  I was reading a financial blog, and the author spoke about this show called Extreme Couponing, and called it "organized hoarding."  I was intrigued, so I looked up a couple episodes online to check it out.

Oh. My. God.  These people are insane.  Like, seriously, I think it's an actual addiction.  They all (every single one of them) mention their heart racing and getting super nervous as the numbers tally up at the register... and then suddenly success!  I'm going to go ahead and assume it's like drug use.

I sometimes use coupons.  I think the most we've ever saved at one store was maybe $15 or $20, but that was with higher price coupons when stocking up on shampoo (the commissary sometimes has excellent coupons for Alba and Jason products and we buy several of each), or when we first moved back and got Muir Glen products (soups, canned tomatoes, sauce) practically free.  However, I don't even like to look through coupons in the newspaper because 90% of the time, they're useless to me.

We don't buy a lot of packaged goods.  So as a rule the only coupons I use are for exciting things like toilet paper and deodorant.  And buying papers just for that isn't worth it.  I'll occasionally check or print some deal off if I have an e-mail from a company, or saw a great deal on a blog.  But I can't imagine buying over $3,000 worth of products in one shopping trip and having enough coupons to get that down under $100 (and yes, the lady on the season finale did just that).

I was disheartened to see one family buying 600 of some candy item.  I understand flavored fitness water is expensive, so a family with 4 guys buying 400 for the summer made more sense to me (they actually got every bottle free).  And I will say that several of the families buy for charities as well, providing for the homeless and animal shelters.  One guy even was buying things for 1,000 military care packages.  But they were all buying boxes and bags of things that I can't understand eating much less stocking up on.

Basically, sure, I'm impressed with a wall of toilet paper or canned tomatoes.  But 62 mustards or 50 bbq sauce bottles?  One lady was quoted as needing to find other ways to use toothpaste she had so much.  I got nauseated and was a little creeped out.

Do you coupon?  Or are you more like us buying too many fresh food items to make it worth your time?


  1. I agree that most coupons (for this family) just arent worth it. seriously, who needs that much mustard!!!
    I do like the people who were doing for charity, in that situation i can understand the "hoarding" but just because you want a deal??? Its crazy to me too.
    Thankfully, we buy a lot of fresh food and i try to look through local ads to cross check prices and since wal mart matches lowest price... it still works out.

  2. I'm like you. There are so very few coupons available for the things we buy that it's not worth searching for them. I've watched the show a couple of times and had the same reaction. I also have friends who are getting into couponing and post pictures of their "hauls". I look at them and don't see much of anything I would purchase. If people truly use what they buy or donate it to charity, I don't have a problem with it but senseless hoarding of things they'll never use is a little nutty.

    Oh, and how *do* you pronounce coupon? ;)

  3. Jessi, the problem with the charity people is that they were doing it... on top of buying an insane amount for their stockpile.

    Deanna, My husband swears it's "coo-pon." We were jokingly going back and forth about it just earlier!

  4. I use coupons and watch for rebates...certainly not to the extent of Gramma Jackie....but why pay full retail for soemthing I can get for less.

    Also our home is centrally exit away from Sam's Club and Costco. Plus we have AMEX Exec membership at Costco and get rebate checks which include 3% back on auto fuel.

    Our airline tickets to Hawaii were covered by our rebate check.


  5. Tell your husband that I'm with you on the pronunciation.

  6. I'll add my 2 cents here...both pronounciations of the word "coupon" are actually correct, although phonetically speaking, 'coo-pon' is more logical and common.

    I've seen every episode of those Extreme Couponers and it creeps me out to see people buy so much just because they can. I admire those who do it to give the extra away to charities and such, but very few of them do and amass these ridiculous stockpiles in their homes. Perhaps if they could spend a day or 2 in Somalia or Ethiopia, they'd realize, first, how lucky they are to be able to have so much food on hand, and second, that their extra food could be put to a lot of use helping others in dire situations. No one needs 100 boxes of toothpaste or 200 cans of soup in their basement. This show is (north) American consumerism and materialism at its best.

  7. Hi, it's actually "coupon" Quepón is actually a surname....MINE! How does one actually pronounce QUE? Probably the same way Hispanics say it right?? Like for instance "Que-so" know cheese, you gringos can say that right? Or "Que"sa dillas? That is a gringo favorite! Although most of you pronounce the two LL's as two LL's instead of like a Y as it should be.... Anyway, just thought I'd join this blog so I could enlighten at least a couple of gringos as to how to pronounce "Que" and how to spell "coupons"... saludos, Gustavo Quepón Santa Cruz, CA USA

  8. I don't bother with coupons, either. Most are for over-processed foods or personal care products that are packed with chemicals and I try to avoid all of the above. I do try to find coupons - or codes - when I'm making online purchases because even just 10% is a good savings and I'm buying what I want/need, not what's advertised.

    I say que-pon, too. :)