Tuesday, January 27, 2009

FREE!!!

What is FREE? When is something free? When is it not? What are your thoughts on FREE stuff you're offered? Lately, I have had to re-think the matter.

I have always been of the opinion that if someone offered me something - free, then they should give it to me. Period. End of subject. Just bring it to my house, send it by a friend, or send it in the mail. I even jumped up on my famous "high-horse" several times when I dutifully followed instructions, filled out forms, and gave all the pertinent information in order to receive something free. Why? Because the final step required me to send $4.95 to cover postage/shipping & handling.

"WHAT?! $4.95 to cover postage? Well, that's not free," I shout indignantly at my computer screen. "Huh, well I never!" I grab my "high-horse" firmly by the reign and back myself out of their "FREE" stuff offer site. On to something else.

Then, just after Thanksgiving I decided to give away copies of my book, the one I finished last March that's stored in boxes under my coffee table. Yes, my first and only published book. I made a list of people to send my book to "FREE" and got busy packaging and addressing them for mailing. At the post office, it hit me like a ton-of-bricks. That's when the famous trio, me, myself, and I had the conversation of our ignorant lives.

I said to myself, "Girl, how many books do you think you're going to give away at this rate?"

Me, I was thinking a mile a minute, at (Yeah, here it is) $4.95 per book, if you give away any more you'll be in the 'po-house' this time tomorrow. Not the poor-house, but the real po-house.

By the time I reached the car, we had recovered from the shock. I got it! Never again will I question the FREE stuff with the $4.95 shipping & handling charge. I understand now. If I want it, I'll pay. If I'm too cheap to pay, then I will have to do without.

Lesson learned.

5 comments:

Lin said...

well, you might give your book to nursing homes and even read them some parts of it before giving it out. I'm sure there are many who would really enjoy it...free. Did you get my note that you've been tagged? See my blog today. Smile-Lin

Kay said...

Even those real FREE cosmetics they've been giving away at Macy's and such require you to stand in super long lines. Not me. Nope. I'll pay the price.... provided it's 75% off with additional coupon discount or some such. :-)

mom/caryn said...

Got it! Actually, my sister and I had a project we worked on years ago that helped me to understand the shipping and handling charges. i don't like em... but, I have been willing to pay em from time to time.

The "free" things that bug me are the "free" tickets to the circus that they give school children. Of course, they need to be accompanied by an adult and the tickets for the parents are $18.00-$24.00 each plus the $9.00 - $13.00per additional child in the family.

That one sort of sticks in my throat and makes me choke a little.

NAVAL LANGA said...

Ms. DELLGIRL

I read the article with keen interest, as such is the experience of many. In today's commercial jungle, no thing can be distributed free.

Naval Langa
SHORT STORIES by NAVAL LANGA
PAINTINGS GALLERIES

A Frugal Friend said...

Thanks for stopping by today!

Great post! I just had a giveaway on my blog and went to the post office to mail the prize package to the winner......Oh my. It was almost $9. I seriously reconsidered ever doing another giveaway on my blog again. HaHa

I have to tell everyone though, that there are plenty of free things I get sent to me absolutely free with no shipping. Like magazines, never pay a dime....they arrive each week. And I make money by selling them later.

But boy, do I understand why not too many companies do the free shipping thing.

http://afrugalfriend.blogspot.com