Have you ever won anything from those store surveys or big sweepstakes drawings?

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Have you ever won anything from those store surveys or big sweepstakes drawings?

I would really like to know the answer to this. Please drop a line (post). I want to know that there are actually people out there who have had the winning ticket.

I am asking this because I don’t know of anyone who has won an IPad from a fast food chain, the million from Publishers Clearinghouse, or $500 from Target or Wal-Mart. I’d be delighted with $500 dollars. I am not even asking for the 10 grand that Wal-Mart used to offer if you took a survey. Take the survey and your name goes into the pot. Who will be the lucky one? Not me! And don’t get my family started on The Monopoly Sweepstakes offered at Albertsons. I have entered all of these many times.

I confess I was a fool for the Publisher’s Clearing House Sweepstakes a couple of years back. I didn’t expect to win the million dollar grand prize, but I never won a $2500 prize, a $500 prize or even a $50 prize. I know you usually don’t get something for nothing, but I had hopes that I could win enough to cut my regular work hours and fulfill my dream of getting my own craft business off the ground. And, they had these pretty awesome coin collectible sets which I got for my son as gifts. Well, after coming to my senses and realizing just how much I had been spending, and not winning and getting big girl clothes made in China that wouldn’t fit over my ankle, let alone my  fanny, I put a halt to it. (Mama’s got back, though I really hate to admit that.) I still get their invites to “come back”, but those go directly into the shredder.

Well, my children won’t be reading this so I will talk about Albertson’s Monopoly Sweepstakes. Please bear in mind that I was a faithful Albertson’s shopper for years. My mom shopped there (although it was called Food Basket and Lucky’s during those years). So I didn’t go there just for the sweepstakes. Maybe 5 or so years ago, the first sweepstakes hit Albertson’s. They posted a board as you walked in the store with the winner’s name and the prize they won. And some of them were actually from my town. I won a total of $12. Nothing to shake a stick at. It was $12 I didn’t have before.

The second time around I was gluing my pieces on as soon as I got home from shopping. I was on do not disturb mode so I could concentrate. The family could hear the hurrays! when I got something I needed. Didn’t even win a $2 prize that year. On top of that they ran out of tickets. I was bummed. And there was no poster listing winners. This year, despite my children telling me not to shop there anymore, (They made me go to Vons, the rival. )I took the bait, though, and tried to get the brass ring. I didn’t win a brass ring or anything else and again they ran out of tickets. One day I sent my son to the store and he told the cashier he hadn’t heard about anyone winning anything the last time the sweepstakes was played. The cashier told him she won $50. Nice, but …

(And I won’t mention how many stamps, envelopes, and index cards I used the last two years to send in my second chance drawing tickets.) So Albertson’s no more. Of course, the local Vons closed, so now what am I supposed to do?

Enough personal humiliation. Shall we move onto the stores that ask you to complete an online survey and you will earn a prize or be put into the big monthly drawing? Well, I haven’t gotten a bag of free peanuts since I entered all of these things. But, lately, I have come across two fast food chains who now offer silly things for filling out the survey. For example, we started the Subway diet faithfully going every day for a sandwich for dinner and lunch tomorrow. I felt really insulted when I read the receipt. The company wants you to take a 3 minute on-line survey and for being a helpful consumer, you get, are you ready for this? Drum roll, please. The honorarium for your 3 minutes is — a fresh baked cookie! I think when I read that my jaw hit the floor. You want to give me a single cookie, which will be gone in less than 10 seconds, for 3 minutes of my time? Not likely. I am curious as to how many survey respondents Subway is getting.

Jack-in-the-Box used to have a $10,000 drawing in which your name was entered if you took the survey. Nope, never won it. Now, I know the economy is in a really rough place, but the wage they want to give you for your 3 minutes is (as bad as Subway, I’m afraid) two tacos. 2 tacos that will be gone in 20 seconds. Please be real. On top of that, I live in Southern Cali, where authentic Mexican food is not only available, but so good. An authentic taco does not have melted slices of American Cheese on it. Yowsa! Besides they sell two of the “tacos” for only 99 cents. So for 3 minutes of my precious time, I earn the equivalent of 99 cents. Can I please just have the 99 cents instead?

I think you get my drift here. I am not saying that those places don’t have anything edible, because I am not. I am just saying those are some pretty weak honorariums. Oh well, at least I have a job with a paycheck every two weeks. As for business? We’re still working on it.

The opinions expressed in this posting are solely my own (well, my children’s, too). So, Big Chain CEOs, please don’t sue me. It’s nothing personal, I assure you. I claim my right to free press; in this case, free blog.

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