You're killing me, America

Friday, May 8, 2009

On Tuesday, Oprah announced that in order to "help people out" in this time of economic suffering, she was going to give everyone in America a free dinner. Or, rather, KFC was going to give everyone in America a free dinner.

All people had to do was go to Oprah's website, download the coupon for a chicken dinner within 24 hours of the announcement, and drive to the nearest KFC. Next?

Cue pandemonium.

My eyes and ears can't believe what they've been seeing on the news. People waiting in lines for HOURS to get their free KFC dinners. Lines of cars forming down the block. All for a meal that I'm told costs $4.00. And not only that, but it's f-ing KFC, for crying out loud. It's not even good.

Are you kidding me, America?

I find myself trying to understand why people are driven to do this. Is the economy so bad that people are that desperate to save four freakin' dollars? Do people love KFC that much? Is it just because the almighty OPRAH is behind this?

And now, KFC has had to go so far as to cancel the promotion since they couldn't keep up with the demand.

I like a good deal as much as anybody. I'm a bargain hunter. If I can avoid paying full price for something, I do. But, two things: 1) You will never catch me redeeming a coupon for KFC. I don't care if it's free. 2) $4 worth of savings anywhere is not worth the hassle of waiting in a huge line. Time is money, people. Time is money.

Couple all of this with the fact that overall, America is overweight and seemingly addicted to fast food, and this whole story just kind of saddens me. It's ridiculous, really. I'd even go so far as to call it embarrassing.

Have no idea what I'm talking about? Full story here.

(Photo from


Megan May 8, 2009 at 4:23 PM  

Our local news (Jacksonville, FL) did a story about this and all the people pissed off b/c they didn't get their free KFC. My husband and I laugh about it every time we drive by the KFC by our house. Really people, it's just $4 worth of really bad chicken.

Blablover5 May 8, 2009 at 4:29 PM  

It's interesting how the word free affects people. I read a little experiment where two people set up shop in a grocery store and you could either get a Hershey's kiss for a penny or a piece of dove for 10 center. It was about equal who bought what.

Then they switched it so the kiss was free but the dove was still ten cents and pretty much no one went for the dove.

It's like Sam's Club or Costco, they lure you in with the image that you're saving money when if you actually price shop you'll find you didn't save anything.

Heather May 8, 2009 at 4:43 PM  

Blablover5--I agree that "free" can drive people to do some pretty crazy things.

But a free Hershey's kiss? That's one promotion that I could get behind. As much as I love chocolate, though, there's no way in hell I'd wait in any kind of line for it! :)

MrsBug May 8, 2009 at 5:43 PM  

This whole thing is absolutely ridiculous, not to mention the hypocrisy on Oprah's part. She did a very enlightening show on factory farms last year, and then supports one of the largest offenders. Great!

Vanessa May 10, 2009 at 4:56 PM  

I lament our society, I really do. It would be the same if this were happening in the UK. We are obsessed with things that are inexpensive or free. Our obsession with buying stuff has meant that whereas in the past people would spend a large percentage of their income on food, today people want to spend less and less so that they can buy designer handbags. Hence factory farmed 'chicken' (doesn't even deserve the name imo) and all manner of fake food. It's very very sad. And pathetic. And embarrassing.

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