Free Birthday Crap

With the Big Four-Three just a week way, my Yahoo! inbox is slowly but surely being inundated with the usual fare of free birthday offers and other crap.

This year, however, I’ve noticed that some companies are being a lot less generous with their offerings.

Take Best Buy’s RewardZone of which I’m a member. It’s that program that rewards you with points whenever you make a purchase either online or in-store. Their birthday gift to me was an amazing quadruple Points on my next purchase. How freaking big of the company that charges ridiculous amounts for their accessories because they make the highest profit margin off of them (hint: do NOT buy accessories from them).

And if you’re curious, you get 1 Point for every $1 you spend and it takes 250 Points to earn $5. That said, I would have to buy something priced at least $63 to earn that cool $5 certificate with my quadruple Points bonus. Sure, it’s not like I’m spending the whole $250 to earn the same amount but I seem to recall that members used to get a $10 certificate for their birthday. This time, I’m spending money to get money.

Screw you, Best Buy.

Then there’s my Sport Chalet’s Action Pass membership which, once upon a time, would score me (if my mind isn’t failing me in my old[er] age) a $10 certificate for my birthday. What did I get this year?

sportchalet

A discount of $15 off a purchase of $75 or more. So again, I’m spending over $60 to earn the benefit. This would have all been fine and well if I were still making a decent paycheck but I haven’t had one of those since I was…on unemployment. But honestly, this one may get used because I frequent that store much more than Best Buy and with Anthony’s birthday around the corner, it could come in handy should we decide to go 50/50 on a bike with Ann’s folks.

There was some actual free birthday stuff in my inbox lately, courtesy of Del Taco:

deltacoshake

Looks pretty good, no? Yeah. I think it does, but the Haunted Mansion font should only be used for 999 Happy Haunts living in ghostly retreats. The thing is that me and shakes don’t play well anymore. Something about the over 500 empty calories and my lactose intolerance that makes me shy away from them and believe me, you don’t want to be around if I do have one. While I appreciate the offer I’m pretty sure I’ll pass on it. At least it’s not that repulsive bacon shake that Jack in the Box is serving up:

gross beyond words

Maybe it’s because I’m no longer a behemoth of a guy anymore, but I don’t quite get this fascination with bacon. I can safely say that fat people must love stuff like this.

Then there was this offer from Ruby’s, an overpriced kitschy place that I haven’t gone to in at least 2 years:

rubys

For reasons already listed under the Del Taco offer, this one probably won’t get used, either. And personally, I prefer Johnny Rockets.

Then today, I got one that I might just have to take advantage of: IHOP’s Rooty Tooty Fresh ‘N Fruity plate.

ihop

Pancakes, eggs, sausage, bacon not blended inside a shake. I’m pretty sure this one’s a winner, even if I don’t eat the sausage (which I’m sure others at the table will have no problem taking).

So those are all of the free and mostly useless birthday craps that retailers and fine dining establishments have sent to me so far. I just hope that the 12-headed jackass doesn’t sing Happy Birthday to me as they bring me my plate.

40/35/5

I got an e-mail the other day from Carnival Cruise Lines with the following reminder:

“It’s just 90 days until your birthday!”

Holy crap in a pita! I have less than 90 days left to enjoy my 30s because after February 14, 2009, I will be officially in my 40s.

It’s not like I sit and think about what life will be like in my 40s because, well, things are not going to change overnight. And if they do, they’ve got less than 90 days to come to fruition. I do, however, have a head-start on the dreaded age: plenty of gray hairs.

What do I want to do for my 40th? Nothing, absolutely nothing. It falls on a Saturday next year and being we bought the cheap Disneyland passes this time around, we’re blocked on Saturdays and I don’t want to spend the extra $30 per person to get in.

Ann and Anthony, however, will have no problems on their birthdays as they fall on a Sunday and Monday, respectively. They will be able to take advantage of Disneyland’s 2009 “What Will You Celebrate?” promotion and score a Gift Card to use as they wish!

In fact, 2009 will be a year of milestone birthdays for everybody here at Casa Ridiculous: I turn 40, Ann hits 35, and Anthony will be The Big 5. While I’m excited for them and their milestone birthdays, I just want my day to pass with absolutely no reminders of my birthday. But if Ann has her way, I’m expecting just the opposite to happen.

Oh, and did I mention that my birthday is Valentine’s Day? So um…no, I won’t be able to hide in the corner somewhere after all.