Beware the *

“Galactic Tides by Night” by Neal Jennings (Creative Commons)

I don’t know about the rest of the world, just my corner of it: there must be a lot of people out there who don’t mind being played (as suckers). Why? You need look no further than your email and the adverts sent to you. You don’t get them? That’s ok, just pick a shopping website, you’ll see the same thing: the almighty * (asterisk).

OMG, you are so rude! I am NOT played as a sucker!!

I count the “made ya look” moments by the way.

So. The *.

There’s a certain online clothing company I purchase from who sends me a few emails each week with new sales and so on. It’s OK, I signed up and they’re not spamming me. I like them, I hate clothes shopping and they ease my burden.

That said, I end up deleting most of the emails and not buying anything. Why? They overuse the * and I can’t get the deals I want on the products I want.

ORDER AT LEAST $100 OF MERCHANDISE AND WE’LL GIVE YOU $50 OFF!!*

Hot dog, we goin’ shoppin’!

Oh. Look behind Door #3? Well sheeeeeeit….

Not applicable on clearance, shoes, Big Brand®, Another Big Brand®, Yet Another Big Brand® … and all merchandise shipped directly from third-party brands.

Made ya look.

End result: I don’t buy as much as they’d like me to because much of what I like is either clearance, shoes, or sold on their website by a third party. What happens a lot is, I’ll see something I like and buy it from another site that’s charging what the discounted price would have been had I been able to use the money-off promotion.

Makes me think of…

Who knows how much time any of us spend looking at something unfruitful because we just jumped in without checking the * first?

Time is the most valuable thing you have because you can’t save it, and once it’s spent, that’s it. No do-overs, you won’t get it back.

Best to spend it meaningfully so one day, when you take the long look back, you don’t find you’ve lost out.

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