A few words about Costco Vultures

Have you ever noticed whenever there are free samples, people will swarm like it’s going to be their last meal? It really doesn’t even matter the item is half the time, as long as it’s FREE, people want it.

A bumper sticker from that local talk radio station? GIMME! An ugly magnet from the pizza place across town that had the crappy sauce? Hey, I could stick that on my fridge! An ink pen from the bail bonds place down town? You never know what might happen to someone you love!

This brings me to an experience I had this weekend. Well, maybe it’s not COMPLETELY related, but– umm– just read my stupid story.

My mom and I went shopping at Costco, and as most of you know they have free samples at the end of every aisle. It is usually the most random stuff you’ve ever seen like a tiny little spoonful of lentil soup, or they’re really stingy and only give you like, one potato chip. (I’m sorry, but I’m going to need more than one chip to make a proper assessment of the product, just saying.) Sometimes you’ll get lucky and see one of the employees handing out pasta or chocolate or something good, but most of the time it’s the poo.

Anyway, while shopping there last weekend, I happened to see a little flash of that signature blue box across a few rows of produce and it immediately began calling my name. MACARONI AND CHEESE. My heaven! I started making my way over to the little table set up at the end of that aisle and told Mom that I’d meet up with her later because -Chris Farley voice- LAY OFF ME, I’M STARVING!

As I got closer, the employee who was manning the table announced loudly, ‘THREE MORE MINUTES UNTIL SAMPLES ARE READY!!!”  I wanted to be all, shhhhhhhhh!! They’ll hear you!!, but I waited calmly and patiently. People started approaching the table, one by one. I was nearly shoved out of the way and was annoyed. I watched as the lady mixed some milk and cheese into the pasta, staring at it like it was my long lost love… and drooling a bit. It was becoming a problem.

When the timer had about 30 seconds left (I was paying attention), she did the unthinkable. She added an extra ingredient. Are you ready for this? I’m gagging right now.


Pregnant women dry heave at the sight of spam, did you know that? I wasn’t aware. I just want to know who in their right mind would defile perfectly good macaroni and cheese with some mystery meat in a can? WHO!? The blasphemy!

I slowly started backing away from the table once the lady stirred in these little pink chunks of meat, but I was surprised to see that no one else left. People just filled in the space that I had left open, and fast! Before I knew it there was a HUGE group of people surrounding the table like a bunch of vultures, young and old, waiting in earnest for the Macaroni and Spam to finish cooking. Waiting for a free sample of that!?

It just proves my theory: It doesn’t matter what’s being handed out. If it’s free, people want it. (Unless I’m actually the crazy one and everyone really does eat spam in their macaroni??)