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Bargains in the bulk candy bin

Submitted by on Tuesday, 26 May 2009 2 Comments

bulk_candySomehow, probably because of food allergies, the guys had managed to make it to the ripe old ages of 5 and 3 without discovering the joys of the bulk-candy bin.

That changed Sunday, and they now have a whole new view of candy-onomics as a result.

We were headed for the grocery store when Boots grabbed a dollar from his dresser drawer. “Can I buy a treat?”

He can’t do much damage with that, I thought. “Sure. Go ahead.”

Big Guy, a more experienced treat-shopper who’s savvy to how much things cost, scoffed. “He’s not going to get much for that,” he said. That didn’t stop him from rushing to grab his own dollar, though.

The first three aisles of the store were our usual exercise in frustration. “No, you didn’t bring enough money for that,” I said repeatedly. I should just record myself saying that and “Close the screen door” and give my vocal cords a rest.

Aisle four, though, had the jackpot.

Big bins of candy – caramels, fruit chews, peppermints and more, all for $1.98 a pound.

Boots grabbed a bag and plopped in two Smarties. “Your dollar will buy more than that, you know,” I said. Why did I say that?

He added about a dozen more, plus a couple of lollipops. Big Guy followed suit but picked three lollipops. “Are you sure we have enough money?” he asked.

“I’m pretty sure, but we’ll see.”

Big Guy rushed ahead of us at the checkout line and handed the clerk his bounty. The clerk took his dollar and handed him back a quarter. Big Guy’s eyes got big. “You mean I get change?”

He wasn’t as thrilled when Boots got more change. “That’s not fair!”

“Yes, it is. You got an extra lollipop. When you buy candy this way, you pay for how much you pick out.”

Still, he knew he’d found a bargain. The full implication hit him once we were in the car. “Mommy, I don’t get nearly this much candy for a dollar at the convenience store,” he said.

“That’s right. So when you want candy, doesn’t it make sense to buy it at the grocery store instead of the convenience store?”

“It sure does!” he said, a little too enthusiastically.

Me and my big mouth. I had been getting off the hook with a single pack of fruit chews or maybe an oversized lollipop plus one other treat, but I just couldn’t let it go at that.

While they don’t exactly have the keys to the candy store now, they do have the key to figuring it out.

Copyright 2009 Debra Legg. All rights reserved.

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  • Sandra Foyt said:

    Sweet! We just went to Dylan’s Candy Store in NYC, where $10.99 gets you a pound of candy in the bulk aisle. And yes, my kids were very excited to stock up on overpriced gummy bears. All those lessons about getting good value for your money, go out the window when surrounded by candy.

  • Debra said:

    He he he. I’m sure the same thing will happen here once we hit a bona fide candy store. I used to do some serious damage in the Jelly Belly bulk section. For the time being, though, Big Guy is impressed that we can keep his whole baseball team in Hubba Bubba for under a buck.