Here are my live notes from watching the 9/12 episode of Extreme Couponing. These are my opinions. You’re welcome to not agree with them. I love debate, but I will not allow someone to come over here just to troll. Especially if you’re not a good troll. You have been warned. *EDIT* I have made corrections as pointed out by Judy. I will not apologize for snarking on this show. If you don’t want to be criticized, don’t go on national TV. And don’t allow yourself to be portrayed as a hoarder/thief/or unethical couponer. These are MY opinions only.
I’m rather outspoken on this topic. So I’m outspoken on lots of topics. This is my blog, after all.
EDIT: I won’t claim to be the first one to come up with all of these instances of fraud. However, I posted about J’aime Kirlew on 3.42 AM, April 7th. You can see that post here: http://extremecouponingtx.blogspot.com/2011/04/perhaps-tlcs-extreme-couponing.html for a limited time, since that blog is officially closed. I just needed to open it for a bit. 🙂
But, just out of curiosity, I decided to see how many instances of fraud I could come up with on the Extreme Couponing series.
1. J’aime Kirlew – Zone bars – Coupon was 1 per transaction.
2. J’aime Kirlew – Cereal – Used Fiber One coupons on other GM varieties.
3. J’aime Kirlew – Buddig – Used 16 oz coupon on 2 oz size.
4. J’aime Kirlew – French’s Mustard – Used $.75/1 Honey Mustard on Regular mustard.
5. J’aime Kirlew – Nivea – Used body wash coupons on lotion.
And probably others, but honestly, that’s bad enough.
6. Sister Save a Lot (Antoinette) – Starkist – Used a coupon meant for “premium” varieties on plain old tuna.
7. Missy Eby – Purex – Used Purex with Zout coupon on regular Purex.
8. Angelique – Similac – Coupon was 1 per transaction – Note: Ms Campbell states over and over and over that the manufacturer gave her special permission to bend the rules. Ahem.
9. Angelique – Crest – ALL Proctor and Gamble coupons state 4 like coupons per transaction OR shopping trip.
You can’t tell me that all of these people “made a mistake”. I just don’t believe it. If I were deluded enough to go on a show like this, I’d make my list (without barcodes/UPC matching) and check it twice. Why would you go on TV and promote fraud? Is 15 minutes (minus commercials) worth it? What’s in it for the participants? Besides scorn and ridicule?
Well, several of them have started blogs. I mean, just started blogs. Amber, from Cut Clip Save, started after the first showing in January. Angelique started her blog the DAY before her show aired. Missy Eby, of receiving inserts from God fame, has been a blogger for a while. But some of these people? Just popped up on the radar. Why aren’t we seeing more long time bloggers?
Oh, that’s right. They ran as far and as fast as they could from this trainwreck.
I posted on my facebook page for this site about how I hate the TLC show Extreme Couponing. And I do. I really think it’s creating a frenzy that can’t be sustained. As I’ve mentioned before, and before, and before, this is not how couponing works.
I’ve been using coupons a long time. Years, in fact. I’ve been blogging for 2 years, and kept a live journal for 7. I’ve been around the interwebz, y’all. And if there’s anything that has been consistent, it’s that there will be a fad, a blow up, and then a cool off.
I am so glad that each and every one of my readers found their way to my blog/facebook page. I want you excited about saving money, for whatever reason. Whether it was the show, a job loss, or a desire to save money in order to buy a pony, I’m glad you’re here. Stick around. Get your feet wet. Buy a couple of newspapers this week. Buy a couple more next week. Come to a class, if you’re local.
Couponing has changed the way I live. And I want you to have that spark, too.
The Big Mouthed Author
That manufacturers aren’t noticing TLC’s Extreme Couponing and their profiling of people who are misusing coupons? In addition to gaming the system?
That grocery prices aren’t rising?
That soon, a lot more people won’t be able to feed their families?
Last year, we received a coupon for $1/1 Sweet Baby Ray’s. This year, it was $1/3. Sneaky, sneaky. Last year, we regularly received printables for $3 off on Huggies. This year? I’ve seen very few. Last year and the year before, I bought pork loins whole in the bag for $.99. This year, I haven’t been able to find them for less than $2.19/lb. Milk was $1.99 last year. Now it’s $3.69.
If you’re not couponing, or taking a class to learn how to coupon, why aren’t you? What’s holding you back?
I tried to give it a chance; truly I did. I wanted to see it succeed, and see more people learn how to save their family mone. Now? I just want to see this show
die a fiery death end, before couponing is given any more of a bad rap.
The TLC show “Extreme Couponing” isn’t doing anyone any favors. It’s showing unethical people doing transactions that the layperson is NEVER EVER going to be able to reproduce. The latest episode featured a woman with over five thousand copies of the coupon inserts. Why oh why would you need that many? I can think up lots of things she could be doing with them, but none fall under the category of “Shopping Rationally”.
It’s not nice to take the last one of ANYTHING, much less over 100 bottles of pain relief. And even if they are paying you to take them, what about the next person? Now, I’ll admit that when I was a newbie, I did clear a shelf or two. And that was wrong of me. I’m a big enough woman that I can admit that. But it’s not something I do now, nor do I advise it. It’s just rude.
Cashiers will not just override any coupon you present to them. Nor should you expect them to, even if you bully them (I’m looking at you Jail’me). But they’re not the enemy. As long as you’re polite and respectful and firm in your tone of voice, you should expect the same treatment. And if you don’t get it, it’s time to talk to a manager.
Hoarding is not a pretty thing. I know it; I’ve lived it; I’ve had to clean out the apartment of someone who hoarded everything. From plastic silverware to school notebooks. If you’ve run out of places to put things, maybe it’s time to have less things. Every deal will come back around. Yes, Excedrin may be on sale this week, with a really great coupon, but I can guarantee you that Motrin or Tylenol will be on sale with in the next three months. With a really great coupon. It does no good to stockpile things you can not use before they go bad.
I am not willing to put my kids out for my hobby. Yes, couponing helps my family stretch our budget. We are able to have food priorities, better quality food, and more of it because I coupon. BUT, you have to know where to draw the line. There are no toilet paper rolls under my kid’s bed. There are no groceries in our living room, besides the ones that are on their way out to be donated. If one of my kids really really really doesn’t like whatever cereal is the best deal that week, he doesn’t have to eat it. We have choices. But I refuse to let it take over my life.
That’s what this show is capitalizing on. These people have made coupons and deal searching their lives. Instead of living the better lives that they’re able to because of couponing, they’re too busy searching for the best dumpster to get coupons. Or the best cashier in the store. Or looking for more deals. And I won’t live that way.
This show is making all couponers look bad. We’re not all coupon hoarding, shelf clearing fanatics. Most of us are just moms (and dads) who want to make our budgets go further.