Thursday, August 28, 2008

A nation obsessed & checkout counter impulse buying

I will be the first to admit that I find celebrity gossip and news interesting. I subscribe to Us Weekly. Occasionally, I will buy other magazines if they catch my eye at the checkout counter.* But I was shocked to find this statistic on MSN Entertainment. The top four People Magazine issues by sales:
  1. 9/11 (4.1 million issues)
  2. The death of Princess Diana (3 million)
  3. The death of John F. Kennedy Jr. (2.8 million)
  4. The Joile-Pitt twins (2.6 million)
I guess Americans like death and babies. Interesting. I can't even fathom how the Joile-Pitt twins can even make it onto the top 10 list with these other events. Wow. For the record, I did not buy the People issue with them on the cover. I'm kind of boycotting them. Not because I have negative feelings about them, just because I'm totally sick of hearing about them and seeing them. I also feel this way about Paris Hilton and the Cruise's.

*Checkout counter tangent:
I am the person - the consumer - that checkout counter impulse merchandising was designed for. I cannot remember the last time that I went to the store and didn't add at least one thing to my cart at the checkout counter.

The other day I was in the 8 items or less express line and I had 8 items. By the time it was my turn, I had 11. In the few short minutes I stood in line, I added a Hershey bar with almonds and two packs of gum to my basket. (By the way, my husband ate the Hershey bar while I was sleeping!) I looked at the checker and said, "I'm not cheating! I had 8 items when I got in line. These don't count." I was defensive about it because once he told me to get out of the 15 items or less line because I had 16 items. Yes, he actually counted and kicked me out of line. I was so embarrassed and offended. Plus, on the trip where I got booted from the fast lane, I had two avocados in my cart and I think that counts as one item because the Checkout-Nazi only needs to type in the code for avocados once. I know some of you disagree. Bring on the debate!

The other thing that I frequently and impulsively buy at the checkout counter is recipe booklets. You know, lots of the major food companies like Betty Crocker and Pillsbury publish them. They are little paperback cookbooks featuring recipes using their products and they have themes like Crockpot cooking, casseroles or appetizers. I am not really sure why I buy these, but I do.

1 comment:

CJ said...

I heard that they got paid in the millions to allow Poeple to take pictures of their babies. Really? Millions? Why do people care? All babies looks the same anyway, like little aliens.