Saturday, July 05, 2008

Independence Day

Last week when Andrew and I went shopping he mentioned an article he read about cereal companies lowering the package size but keeping the same price. We checked out the cereal aisle to verify that this was true--and it was.

17.3 oz., 14.7 oz., 19.4 oz. Who decided that they should sell 18.7 ounces of cereal?

Perhaps they've always tacked on the decimal points, but I don't remember that from the past. Most numbers were whole numbers, from what I can remember: 18 oz., 15 oz., 20 oz. Those numbers just make more sense.

What the cereal companies are doing, though, is smart. They're trying to cut down the weight so slowly, so minutely that people won't notice, or at least not care, that they are spending more for less.

Airlines could have tried that. Instead of charging $25 per suitcase all of a sudden. They should have just added that cost onto the ticket price. No one would notice their ticket price jumping form $225 to $250, or at least they'd hardly care. But to go from free to $25? That's just bad business. It make people mad.

So do gas prices. We noticed during our Costco stop that gas is looming dangerously close to $4 per gallon. Granted, it's past $4 at several places in Orem already, but Costco gas is supposed to be cheaper. It is, I guess, but not by much.

"Not a lot of people are traveling over the Fourth of July Weekend this year because of gas prices," he mentioned.

He's been listening to NPR again. He gave me the whole run down of the program he listened to.

"We're not going anywhere over the Fourth of July Weekend," I said.

"Yeah, but that's because we're lame, not because of gas prices. They didn't account for lameness in their survey."

Indeed, our Independence Day was pretty uneventful. We slept through the parade and any available pancake breakfast. We packed. We went to visit my family for a while. We had dinner at Andrew's parents' house, rearranged their storage room to make room for more of our stuff, and played Guitar Hero--both of us moving up from easy to medium (we're getting good). We skipped fireworks and put Rachel to bed. Then we watched Star Trek.

Yup, that sounds pretty lame. I guess they really didn't account for lameness on their survey.


  1. Oh my word. You guys should have enjoyed the Fourth of July! It's the last one you'll get a chance to celebrate for at least 2 years... I've been over here long enough now that I really miss it a lot! Can't explain it. Oh well.
    As for gas prices, in England right now, it's 8-10 dollars a gallon. yeah... I'll be thinking how cheap everything is when I get home!

  2. We've noticed the same thing about the cereal. I've also heard that some gas stations are posting one price that's 'cheaper', but if you pay with plastic it's actually more expensive than the listed price! It's just crazy!