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It's Free! So Why Are There No Takers?

My friend Adrienne had a problem last night. She’s a barista and was closing up the coffee cart. I was her last customer.

“Want a danish?” she says. “It’s free.”

“What’s wrong with it?” I ask. “Day-old? Fell on the floor?”

“No. It’s just left over. They’ll be old tomorrow. I’m closing down. Hey, I’m offering you something for free. That should appeal to you, 'specially.”

Ouch. But, problem is, I just don’t feel like it.

So, next bunch of passersby, she leans out through the counter. “Would you like a free danish?”

The group stops. They kind of sniff, as if to determine what the conspiracy might be. They look at the tray like it’s got slimy toads on it.

“Uh, no thanks.”

“Free danish?” Adrienne says to a mom wheeling her kid along.

“What’s the catch?” says the mom.

“None.”

“No, thanks.”

“Free danish?” Two guys walking their road bikes along stop.

“What’s this, Girl Scouts? Do we have to join something? You with Obama? Perry?” says one of them.

“You know what?” I say to Adrienne, “I bet if you offered them half price, then people would take them. Then they feel they’re getting a deal. This way, free, they feel you’re trying to hook them in, put them under some obligation. I tell you: offer them half price.”

“Can’t. Then my boss would look at the receipts. He’d ask why I only charged half…it's just not worth it.”

Sigh. Maybe this is why there’s no such thing as a free lunch. Nobody will eat it.

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My friend Adrienne had a problem last night. She’s a barista and was closing up the coffee cart. I was her last customer.

“Want a danish?” she says. “It’s free.”

“What’s wrong with it?” I ask. “Day-old? Fell on the floor?”

“No. It’s just left over. They’ll be old tomorrow. I’m closing down. Hey, I’m offering you something for free. That should appeal to you, 'specially.”

Ouch. But, problem is, I just don’t feel like it.

So, next bunch of passersby, she leans out through the counter. “Would you like a free danish?”

The group stops. They kind of sniff, as if to determine what the conspiracy might be. They look at the tray like it’s got slimy toads on it.

“Uh, no thanks.”

“Free danish?” Adrienne says to a mom wheeling her kid along.

“What’s the catch?” says the mom.

“None.”

“No, thanks.”

“Free danish?” Two guys walking their road bikes along stop.

“What’s this, Girl Scouts? Do we have to join something? You with Obama? Perry?” says one of them.

“You know what?” I say to Adrienne, “I bet if you offered them half price, then people would take them. Then they feel they’re getting a deal. This way, free, they feel you’re trying to hook them in, put them under some obligation. I tell you: offer them half price.”

“Can’t. Then my boss would look at the receipts. He’d ask why I only charged half…it's just not worth it.”

Sigh. Maybe this is why there’s no such thing as a free lunch. Nobody will eat it.

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Comments
1

Next time he should just say they are 50% off and offer them for a dollar. San Diegans are always looking for a bargain. Notice how they will line up and wait for hours for a free burrito.

Charging something gives it value appeal. It is why people line up and wait to pay $5.00 for a fifty-cent coffee at Starbucks. They think its status and that they “got it going on” by blowing their money on a coffee.

Sept. 28, 2011

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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