Ah, TLC’s Extreme Couponing. You inspire me with your portrayals of Dumpster-diving people saving up to 97 percent when they buy three hundred cases of bendy straws. You inspire me with the eight-hour shopping trips and the four-hour checkouts. You inspire me to give extreme couponing a whirl. I want to buy thirty boxes of Tampax-brand tampons and spend only eighteen cents.

So, I tried it the other day. Since it was Sunday, I figured the Sunday paper would be choked with coupons. That’s how it is in the TV show. I bought a paper.

And . . .

The only coupon I could actually use was for a buck off a can of Folgers coffee. Not the big one, the little eleven ounce one. That’s fine for me; I’m the only one in the house who drinks coffee, so the small one is enough. It retails for $4.99 and with my coupon, that meant $3.99.

Hey, a buck’s a buck.

I trotted down to the store and got a pleasant surprise: the small can was part of an in-store weekly special and was now only $2.99.

With coupon, $1.99.

Feeling like a money-saving badass, I picked up a can. And noticed the fine print on the special.

Gotta spend at least 10 bucks to get the buck-ninety-nine.

Damn it.

Why is something like this never on the TV show?

the dream.

2 thoughts on “EXTREME! COUPONING!

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  1. A friend of mine does this. You also have to be willing to get whatever brand is couponed, whether it’s your usual or not. And have a second pantry when you buy enough of everything to meet minimum purchase requirements. And be partly crazy.

    I’ll stick with my full priced Ben and Jerry’s instead of Industrial Sand discount ice cream, thanks.

    1. Yeah . . . you also have to willing to Dumpster-dive for newspapers and steal them from people’s lawns. I could do the theft, but the Dumpster? Nuh-uh.

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