Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Why is My Cereal Bossing Me Around?

Mr. Spock says disobedience
would be irrational.

This morning, as I'm preparing my breakfast, I read the back of the cereal box -- as you do. And I realized that there are instructions on how to save money on the back of the box. Now clearly, the producers of the cereal know their audience. This is the Safeway, store-brand version, a poor (wo)man's Grape Nuts called Crunchy Nuggets. Never mind that this cereal's name makes more sense and is a little less suggestive than Grape Nuts, it's still the dollar-or-two-less-a-box brand, and Safeway has a good idea who's buying it.

On the back it reads, "Saving Money Can Be Easy!" and there's a cartoon depiction of a "typical" American family -- Dad, Mom, one boy, one girl, all white. Dad's wearing a shirt and tie; Mom has on some frumpy housefrau dress. The kids are dressed in clothes that could easily have come from the local second-hand shop or Salvation Army or possibly the "ironic" bin at Old Navy -- hard to tell.

And the advice? Genius stuff, really: stock up on regularly purchased items when you find them on sale. Generate a budget and adhere to it. (They use neither "generate" nor "adhere," but I have more faith in my audience than they do in theirs, apparently.) Get a subscription to your local paper -- not so you can be up-to-date on news, don't be silly, white trash doesn't vote -- but rather so you can clip out the coupons for foods that are probably overpriced by at least that $0.65 anyway. Compare prices when shopping! Save money from your paychecks! Keep a "loose change" jar!

There's nothing inherently wrong with any of these ideas. I just found it a little weird to be getting advice on fiscal responsibility from my breakfast cereal.


Ash said...

I freaking LOVE coupons! I love seeing the amount that I saved at the bottom of my receipt! I even asked for a coupon organizer for Christmas! (Yes, I am really only 27!) I don’t get the paper though; I get the coupons from other sources. My favorites are those targeted coupons that QFC sends out quarterly. They track my purchases via my club card (yeah – it’s kinda big bro.) and then they send me a whole pack of coupons for shit that I buy all the time! They also send me one or two really good ones like 15% off any one grocery shopping trip! I try to save those for when I am stocking up or shopping for a party, etc.

Lynn Sinclair said...

Save money from your paycheck. Who would've thought?

CJ said...

I only buy cereal with mazes or other games on the back.