Saturday, February 20, 2010


A few weeks ago we were leaving BJ's and a nice lady approached us asking us if we'd like a free $25 BJ's giftcard. Well duh! All we had to do was be the recipients of a free window inspection. No obligation to buy-- we'd even get some free energy-saving tips to boot. At this point, while I was having a tiny o, my husband was shaking his head and saying "no thanks." I gave him the devil woman death glare and we huddled. "Fine, but you have to deal with the inspection," he said. A bargain had been struck. For weeks I fantasized about that giftcard. Maybe it would arrive at the same time my Rite Aid P&G Visa card would, and I'd use the two together to create grocery budget magic. I waited by the phone like a giddy teen. Finally, the window people called. Unfortunately there was a small glitch-- my husband and I both had to be home during the inspection. "Why is that?" I asked Jose, the inspection coordinator. "It's our policy to have both property owners present," he replied.


I scheduled anyways for Saturday morning. Husband was not ecstatic but was relatively docile about it. Then I started feeling guilty. We have no intention of replacing our windows at this time-- was it wrong to go through the process in lusty pursuit of a BJ's giftcard? We talked about it and neither my husband nor I was feeling very excited about spending 60-90 minutes on our Saturday morning with strangers tromping through our toy-strewn home putting the hard sell on us. Reluctantly, I cancelled our inspection.

So no BJ's giftcard for me. And yet, unlike our old, filthy windows ("who cleans your windows?" Jose had asked during the initial phone call. "Uh... the condo association?" I improved.) I felt somewhat virtuous about the whole thing. We did the right thing, and instead of getting pitched to I got to go to dance class this morning.

What would you do? Is it somewhat naughty to accept a giftcard or other reward in that type of situation when you know you're not even mildly interested in the product?

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