Friday, November 14, 2008

Mundane Thursday

As I write this on Thursday evening I am sure that when this blog post appears the next day, I am so glad it is Friday. What a long week it has been!

I really have nothing much to write about. You may be thinking or muttering, what is so different today that I have to announce the fact? The most exciting event of the day was copping a cheap subscription to the Los Angeles Times: $39 for one year of the Thursday through Sunday edition, PLUS, at no extra charge, including shipping and handling, an authentic front page aluminum printing plate of the day after the recent elections!

I voted for McCain so I really don't care about that plate and I am sure E-Bay will be saturated with these things, but the newspaper subscription was too good to pass up. Right now I am taking the Sunday paper only, and paying a whole lot more for just that, so it makes sense to switch.

The offer came in an e-mail. Actually, it was meant for my parents since they had a subscription which has since been canceled, and the message does say it was for people who used to have a subscription to the Times. Well, I "used" to have one too.. and I still do, but they let me make the switch so I'm not complaining.

The only part of the deal I don't like is having to pay with a credit card. The reason I don't like that is because that's the Times' sneaky way of hiking rates later on down the line without either my noticing it or figuring hey, they already have my card on file, just charge it to the card.

I've had several special offers from the Times in the past for really cheap rates on Sunday-only editions, but they are for a limited term after which the rate increases. Plus, once they get hold of your phone number, they bombard you with calls trying to get you to upgrade to additional days. They reel you in by telling you the extra days, like Thursday through Saturday, are absolutely FREE! Again, that is for a limited term only and once that is done you get a bill with a higher rate. I think most people don't even notice the rate has changed and keep paying it.

But cheapskate me does notice it!

I call them up and they give me an extended period at the old rate, after which time they again try the same ploy and again I notice it. Meanwhile, they keep trying to entice me to switch to automatic credit card billing by offering a $5 Target gift card or something equivalent.

Maybe if it were a Costco or Trader Joe's card I might consider it! But Target? Nah.. the main things I like about Target are that dog with the bullseye and their commercials.

So now I have an entire year before I need to be wary about them increasing my bill. But in the meantime I'm sure I can expect them to eventually begin calling to try and get me to upgrade to a full week's worth of papers. It won't work. We pretty much just get the paper for the ads anyway, although now we can have an attractive Obama plate as a conversation starter. For $39 a year, subscription and history-making headline combined, I suppose I can continue to play that game with them.

Like I said before, I didn't vote for our president-elect, but I do hope that he will be able to energize this country, and I truly wish him all the best.

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