I love freebies. I think almost everyone does.
But it needs to be pointed out that freebies are a way of advertising for companies and people shouldn’t act like vultures when it comes to freebies. “Freebies” does not mean a literal free for all — not only on the end of the consumer but on the end of the company too (and I will get to that shortly).
A couple months ago I was in Vitamin Shoppe and they were having a free sample day. I was so happy because I was able to find a natural headache solution that worked. Had I not tried a free sample, I would have never known of this product. Now the company has a new satisfied customer because of me trying their sample.
The key words here are “a free sample” — not “all the free samples you can stuff into your bag.”
That same day I saw some samples of a very pricy chlorella product. A woman grabbed ALL of them. ALL! I took my one sample and wanted to get another for a friend who was with me, but at the other end of the store, and thanks to that greedy woman none were left.
People stuff things in their bags whether they need them or not. Even if they don’t know what something is, they will take it because the price, free, is right. It bothers me is that people don’t consider others, that others may need a free sample more than they do. Perhaps a certain sample can be the key thing a heart or cancer patient needs to put him/herself back on track? So, please, people, remember that it’s not always all about YOU.
On weekends Whole Foods usually has a bunch of tables set up for free sampling. If I’ve already tried the product, if I’m already using the product, or if I don’t intend on buying the product, I do not take a free sample.
These workers are standing on their feet for four hours straight and some get commissions on what they are selling. It’s important not to be a T.W. (Time Waster) and have respect for this person’s job. Do not let greed and gluttony get the best of you when it comes to free samples. It’s a sampling table for cryin’ out loud — don’t make it your white trash luncheon affair!
When I have some extra money that is when I’ll sample something because then I could afford to buy if from the person selling. This is how you properly show respect for these hard workers. And if the person is really nice, I’ll even go as far as putting something back that I originally intended to buy in order to buy theirs so they could get a credit/bonus.
Now, on the flip side of the coin, sales people can be vultures too. Several months ago I was thrilled to be going to the Mind Body Spirit expo. But I will not attend again this year.
Sales people at the Mind Body Spirit expo were extremely vulture-like, trying to get you into their booths and to buy what they were selling, some coming out into the middle of the floors running up to you, even using scare tactics to get you to sign up to come to their facilities. (And they would make a face if you weren’t interested. How very Mind/Body/Spirit of them! *note sarcasm*)
That reminded me of a clothing store my sister and I used to go to in the 1980s. It was in a mall and the saleswomen would come out of the store into the mall and try to get you into their store. My sister put it perfectly, “They attack you!”
You see, on both ends of the spectrum, nothing that is forced is ever a good thing. No matter which end of the table you’re on, giving or receiving, there has to be a mutual respect without pushiness, without greed, without urgency, without a sense of entitlement.
So, to all receivers, unless your admission price includes a free goodie bag, please keep your hands at a level of gracefulness, not grubbiness.
And to all givers, give greatly, not begrudgingly. Give your samples, but don’t act like people owe you something if they are not interested. Because you never know, someone may not be interested right now but they could be in the future. And don’t think they can’t sense you making that face at them when they turn away!
Trust me, they can!