Saturday, November 08, 2008

Celebrity editions of Game Shows, etc.

"Celebrity" Family Feud-
"Celebrity" Are You Smarter than a Fifth Grader-
"Celebrity" Don't Forget the Lyrics-

If you watch any game shows you know that "celebrity" game shows have been the trend lately. I wondered why, and now I think I know- the economy.

Think about it for a minute- the celebrity lends their appearance on the show to promote the charity, and the winnings that are dispersed to the various charities are completely tax-deductible to the network- as opposed to winnings paid to your average Joe. It saves them money.

In other economic news...

Fast food chains used to take multiple coupons as long as you weren't mixing the discounts. Recently, both Carl's Jr. and McDonalds have put new wording on their coupons that you can only use one per visit.

My wife and I splurged and went to Olive Garden. Prices on entrees have gone up $1.50-2.00. We were shocked to find that adding broccoli to our fettuccine alfredo with chicken would cost us $3.95! Broccoli!
A tip- if you go to Olive Garden and split an entree with someone, they will charge you a fee for an additional salad. This allows them to keep refilling your salad bowl. One bowl of salad is totally enough for two, so make sure to let them know you only want one bowl of salad.

Verizon Wireless used to have a lot of great online discounts. Now, except for a few phones, these discounts have turned into mail-in rebates. I don't do mail-in rebates for four reasons. 1) You have to wait up to 2 months or more for your money, 2) Your name will end up on a marketing list, 3) Rebate processors are widely known for nitpicking your rebate submission to find a reason to reject it and then not tell you, and 4) mail-in rebates are just plain gimmicky.
And with these Verizon Wireless rebates, you don't get a check. You get a pre-paid debit card. Which, in the fine print, may even result in your purchases with said card being tracked- I don't know.

Oh do I have a lot to complain about with Verizon Wireless. I am on my New every Two upgrade time. I don't know if I want to even bother upgrading my phone... every new "feature" on the phones I am looking at would require additional monthly service charges:
Visual Voicemail? $2.99/mo
Browsing the web? $20/mo unless you want to pay outrageous MB charges
Rhapsody Music? $19.99/mo
VCAST TV? $19.99/mo
Verizon Navigator? $10/mo

I could up my "select" family plan to the "premium" plan, but that's $40/mo, and I am the only one using the premium services. I can't justify it.

Verizon locks down their phones so you can only use apps you purchase from them, and even on the expensive smart phones with GPS were you can load your own apps, they lock down the GPS module so it only works with their own Verizon Navigator service.

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