The $39 Experiment RSS Feed
This is not the latest update! — I split the older updates into their own pages to keep everything loading quickly. If you're looking for the latest buzz, check the main updates section.
Previous Update - March 21, 2006

March 21, 2006 - I'll Have a Breakfast McNothin

Uneventful. That pretty much sums it up.

McDonald's (#31) sent back a letter saying that because they serve 25 million people a day, they prefer giving away free product via the games on their cups and such. Oh well — I'll live. And if modern science is right, I'll probably live longer, too, seeing as how I won't be eating any free McDonald's food anytime soon.

The letter to Ritz Carlton (#91) bounced back — after nearly a month in limbo. Why, dare I ask, did it take nearly a month for a letter from Chicago to Atlanta to bounce back? Was it being held for ransom by the post office? Was someone trying to sell it on eBay? "Hey! Look! It's that bum/slob/mooch, Tom Locke!"

Anyway, this one I'm not resending, because to be honest, I just don't care. Being letter #91, it was around the time when I was saying, "Ugh... Nine... more... letters... Kill... me...". I was basically grasping at corporate straws at that point.

Random (Useless) Numbers
And speaking of a month, this Friday (the 24th) will be one month since our 100 letters were sent on their journey (mission?)

To date, I've received 48 responses... 26 of the 48 sent back something good ("good" being a relative term, of course). 20 of the 48 sent back a "no" of some form or another. Two of the 48 sent back "uneventful" responses.

Additionally, there have been four casualities. Three of the four were re-sent with new addresses; one was not. Two of the three that were re-sent are still out there somewhere — the third actually received a semi-positive response.

I'm hoping to have some big, eventful news on Friday, being our anniversary and all... But as you know, I'm just the messenger. I'll keep my fingers crossed.

Originality at Its Finest
I was contacted personally today by a bigwig at one of the companies that sent me freebies... He indicated that he's been getting a lot of letters that looked similar (identical?) and upon searching around online a bit, he found this site (and the source of the letter).

He wasn't upset — rather, he seemed pleased that I was helping to bring positive exposure to his product and his company.

Nonetheless... This site has grown massively in popularity since its inception, and I wouldn't be surprised if many (if not most) of the companies on my list know about it. With that said, if you plan on just blatantly ripping off my letters and using them to get your own free stuff, you're probably not going to have the best luck.

But whatever...

Freebies Summary
Who? What?
approx. $
Fellowes Four cans of compressed air $32.00
Carma Labs One jar of Carmex $1.29
Stash Tea Nine teabags $1.80
White Castle 19 burgers, 2 breakfast sandwiches, 2 orders of Chicken Rings $12.37
Airborne One free tube of Airborne $5.99
Reynolds Two 50-cent coupons $1.00
S.C. Johnson One free ($3 max.) Skintimate coupon $3.00
Church & Dwight Two $1 Arm & Hammer coupons $2.00
Pfizer Three 50-cent Purell coupons $1.50
Pepsi Pepsi pen, pencil, stickers, and gift catalog N/A
Biotene Free samples of gum, toothpaste, and mouthwash N/A
Burt's Bees Free stick of Burt's Bees $1.87
Dunkin Donuts Book of five $1 gift checks $5.00
Mercedes Benz Mercedes keychain $30.00
Eden Foods Pasta, tea, soymilk $9.54
Chicken of the Sea Two $2 coupons, one 25-cent coupon $4.25
Sanford Four pens $5.00
Gatorade (aka Pepsi) Three 60-cent coupons for Propel $1.80
Nestle Two coupons for Nestle candy $1.00
Max and Erma's A hat and travel cup $15.00
Dairy Queen Three $1 gift certificates $3.00
Del Monte Five coupons for dog snacks $5.25
Celestial Seasonings Three sample teabags, three coupons $5.60
Boston Market 33% of $50 coupon book $16.67
Campbell's Four 50-cent coupons $2.00
Energizer Three $1 coupons $3.00
Frito Lay Two 55-cent coupons $1.10
Nylabone A "Double Action Chew" with "Minty Fresh Center" (wolf size) $9.33
28 companies $180.36