A friend of mine recently forwarded me a printable attachment for a FREE bag of Doritos - any flavor, any size (up to a $5.00 retail value). Here's how I would encourage a youthful, enterprising bum or broke college kid to spend a Saturday afternoon. First, go to Wheeling Jesuit University and print out 100 sheets of coupons. That's 6 coupons per sheet - thus a grand total of 600 coupons. In fact, I say fuck it and print the damn things out til the printer loses all toner or runs out of paper, whichever happens first. Alright, now you're armed with the world's first low grade "couponic weapons."
Phase 2 - Hang out in the chip aisle of various retail establishments. I'm thinking first and foremost - WALMART and then hit some of the lesser trafficked stores (Kroger, Target, gas stations, CVS, Rite Aid, etc.). If you see anyone contemplating purchasing a bag of chips, tell them you'll sell them a coupon for $1.00. Almost every normal person carries a dollar bill on them. I would think most would succumb. Especially if you give them a brief (possibly fictitious) hard luck story. College kids can say they're doing it as some kind of frat/hazing stunt and they aren't allowed back to campus until they get $50 worth of coupons sold for this evenings kegger. That's a tremendous story line because it's fun, evokes a minor amount of sympathy and is less annoying then the straight up panhandling approach.
Alright, here's the hard, cold truth. Eventually, someone is going to spill the beans and the manager is going to kick your ass outta there. But in the meantime, I'm assuming you could make 20 sales or so if you're not a loud-talker and have a decent work ethic. Basically, once you get kicked out you're just off to the next retail establishment. The bigger the store, the better as you would trend less conspicuous.
I'm thinking after expenses (mainly time, gasoline and a little wear and tear on your vehicle), on a good afternoon you could make somewhere in the neighborhood of 70 bucks or so. Plus, you could probably convince a few people to use their kids and sell them multiple coupons. Hell, you could try to encourage the Doritos "variety is the spice of life closeout special" - you sell them 10 coupons for $5 bucks and let them get every flavor variety over time (this would necessitate multiple visits). And in the year 2010, I've never seen so many different flavors. 10 might be a bit high. 8 sounds more likely. Incidentally, my favorite is the mix bag with the Pizza Cravers/Ranch. And Doritos are slightly healthier than most other chips.
This reminds me of a tale from my high school years. Jepsonian and I would hang outside Listening Booth - a record/cassette store at the Ohio Valley Mall. They had this promotion all summer where you would get these certificates that filled out a larger redemption sheet for a free cassette. The more money you spent, the more coupons you got. So we'd approach these random strangers exiting the store and ask them if they were going to use their coupons. "Hey, can we have them? We're so close to getting a free cassette, we can taste it." In fact, on a busy day we'd often split up and run people down. Half the time, people would hand them over. The other half would not. This one afternoon we did some killer business. Over the course of a few hours, we managed to fill out 6 sheets. That meant a strong redemption of 6 brand new cassettes tapes. We were in heaven. In the day, that was about 60 or 70 bucks worth of heavy metal. Overkill, Nuclear Assault, Testament... etc. You get the mindset.
Anyway, this salesbitch from Merry-Go-Round eventually ratted us out. Why she would do this still I have no idea whatsoever? Jealousy, I suppose. She was probably angry we weren't using the coupon sheets for her favorite Stacy Q or the latest Jermaine Stewart cassette. We were pissed off! I do recall yelling mild obscenities into the store and trying to dissuade shoppers from entering that place.
Anyway, on the ride home from the mall, I popped in a brand new King Diamond tape called "Them." The song "Tea" evoked chills! Yes grandma, it's always time for tea. For some unknown reason, Jepsonian wanted to save the cassette cellophane wrapping. To do this day, I have no idea. When I asked him why (at the time), he mumbled, "Ahhh, you'd probably think it's stupid."
So I'd like to think we were pretty successful in the first ever known Listening Booth systempunkt. Soon after, their corporate headquarters ended the marketing promotion. It brings a tear to my eye to think it might have been a direct result of that fateful afternoon. 20+ years later, I'd like to see someone follow in our footsteps. Dare to dream.
Incidentally, I printed out a bunch of the coupons. If you see me, ask for a few. I'll have them in my car. Tell your friends.