First order of business; do you say “coo-pon” or “cue-pon?”
I am a firm believer in pronouncing it “coo-pon” but I have good reason for being so anal about this one. When I was a little girl, my mom called lady parts “cue-pee.” I have no idea why, and it seems that no one else has ever heard of this. But to this day, when I hear people say “cue-pon” and instantly think of “cue-pee” and well, lets just say, I would appreciate it if you read this post with my preferred pronunciation.
Recently I watched a few episodes of TLC’s show “Extreme Couponing.” For those of you not familiar, each week the show follows two people, typically housewives, who are OBSESSED with using coupons. It’s pretty impressive that these ladies are able to score $600.00 worth of groceries for $6.00! But it takes some of them 6 hours of work to prepare for one shopping trip. And then they spend several hours in the store shopping and then a few more checking out. I feel soooo bad for the cashiers, even though I won’t buy anything at Bed Bath & Beyond without my trusty 20% off coupons.
Part of me is really into the idea of food hoarding. My first boyfriend was mormon and his family had giant barrels of flour and sugar tucked away. His mom would do extreme bargain grocery shopping, so if she found a great deal on something, she would buy as many as she could. This meant they always had lots of steak and Gatorade. And since my family never had either, I was in heaven and thought the woman was a genius. But she was small potatoes compared to the women of Extreme Couponing. I wish I was a little bit more like them, and more ready for the impending zombie apocalypse.
Yet most of me is freaked out by the amount of food these people are storing. I can’t imagine it being possible for them to eat all of that food before it expires. Most of them have only been doing this kind of couponing for a few years and I want to know, what is going to happen when the food starts to get super old? Will they donate it to shelters before then? Will they eat the same thing for every meal for weeks just to use it up? What if the water heater explodes and ruins their $20,000 worth of food? Is everyone in the county getting a bottle of mustard for Christmas? I have a huge issue with food going to waste, so this concerns me, a lot.
Personally, I have only used grocery coupons a handful of times. Lucky for me, I can’t or won’t eat most of the food that has coupons in the newspaper. But why are these moms feeding this crap to their kids? Since fresh fruit and veggies rarely get coupons, these moms don’t buy any, like ever! They are feeding their families with super processed “food” with no balance of fresh fruit and veggies! Sure hotdogs are delicious, but they are one of the worst things you can eat. Just because you can buy them for $0.55 a package doesn’t mean you should. Same thing goes for all processed meats, yogurt, and junk food. One of the women has 7 kids! I know, WOW?!? She says they go through 20 yogurts a week, so buying 56 isn’t a big deal. Does she now how much sugar she is pumping into her little munchkins? One woman bought 35 bottles of Maalox, which maybe she and her husband wouldn’t need if they didn’t let the coupons determine their diet.
[Please don't bring up my sugar addiction right now, I'm too high on my soap box.]
I vote for responsible “extreme couponing and hoarding” if that’s even possible. I think the next time I get the Sunday paper I’ll see how many coupons I can find for food or products that are actually good for you and the environment. Maybe in a few months, I’ll be ready for my own version of “Extreme Organic Vegan Couponing”
Thank you TLC, for making me feel so much better about my diet. And for putting more middle/lower class families on tv. And for reminding me to be grateful that Mister enjoys grocery shopping as much as I do. It made me really sad that these women get so stressed out while grocery shopping. And I was bummed that the husbands were referred to as “helping out for the day” or “the less experienced shopper.” Mister and I always go grocery shopping together and we have so much fun, it still feel like a date. I never want to be 100% responsible for the food in my home and I wonder why this is still typically considered “women’s work.”