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Rant

If You Can’t Trust Big Box Anymore, Who Can You Trust?

We all know that Big Government, Big Oil, Big Tobacco and Big Bank cannot be trusted.

But I’ve always thought I could trust Big Box.

Not any more.

Up until now I had written off ever-shrinking product packaging evilness to manufacturer’s greed. You know, charge the same price but put less ‘stuff’ in the box. It’s a price hike without a change in price.

Just like a tax increase that’s created by allowing a tax cut to expire. But I digress.

In our household we have many divisions of labor. One division is in the area of shopping. When it comes to shopping Leslie is in charge of food and shoes. I do most of the rest.

Most of the rest happens in COSTCO and SAM’s, where I resign myself to buying hideously large (for 2 people) packages of stuff in return for great prices. But it’s these great prices that have lead me down the road of complacency. I’ve let my guard down.

I have assumed, wrongly it turns out, that one huge package of stuff bought in any Big Box is equivalent in value to any other. I haven’t been comparison shopping. My bad.

But two things have changed for me lately,

  1. A nagging suspicion that I’m being taken advantage of, and
  2. I am packing an iPhone, with its built-in camera.

Today when I went to use my COSTCO coupon, I was shocked, shocked I say, to be let down by Big Box. The coupon made it look like I could purchase my normal huge f*cking container of Tide He detergent and save $2.50.

Fewer Loads by 26% In COSTCO On The Left, vs. SAM's On The Right

But when I compared that offering to SAM’s regular priced alternative it turns out that in this case because of the package size COSTCO was 20% more expensive, and not $2.50 cheaper.

Of course the smart shopper will notice that COSTCO is selling “Advanced Power” as compared to the “Original Scent” at SAM’s. This is because of the clever arrangement between Big Box and Big Detergent to confuse the shopper with (supposedly) non-equivalent product.

If you ask me, nothing about this obfuscation smells good.

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