Activities: Free Cheese!
Difficulty Rating: 1
Thoughts: I’ve been trying to think of what I’ve learned so far during 30 Days of Free. All my other months have been based around self -development but this one is an all-out grab for whatever I can get. I’ve noticed that there are three types of free, Free Free (where someone has an unused item and is thrilled to give it to another person - eg. hand-me-down clothes/festival merch), Bait Free (where a free gift is given to spark a situation in which money can be generated – eg. gym trials/cosmetic testers) and Trap Free (where you’re actually paying too much for something and getting a crap free gift to disguise it – eg. power companies/showbags/anything that says “call in the next ten minutes”.)
I’ve been able to avoid Trap Free products because I’m not a good target for scammers, being below the poverty line and all. The trick has been to boldly take the Bait Free offers without feeling obliged to go on to further purchases. It can be hard when a smiling person gives you the full pitch, a sample of the product and a tale of how hard it is to put twins through school when you’re paid on commission. In the past I’ve been tempted into some awful buyers regret by these kinds of ploys. But ultimately, the point of a free sample should be to share with customers how good a product is, rather than to push a guilt purchase.
With this in mind, I confidently strutted down the deli aisle at the Vic Market to get me some free cheese. I tried three different boutiques, sampled 7 different kinds of cheese and purchased nothing. I could’ve been pushed by the little old lady spooning out camembert or the large soccer player who declared his swiss the only one restaurants will stock, but I just smiled, whacked on a bit of quince paste and walked away. It’s not like their free scheme didn’t work, there’s a particular ash blue brie I’m tempted to go back for! But I maintained my dignity and made a balanced decision.
I suppose the benefits of Free Month have been outward ones rather than internal. I’ve been feeling very gracious to Melbourne for all the stuff it’s given me and all the perks have made me less cranky. I love going on about how hard my life is, but Free Month made me realise how much stuff I do get for nothing, and thinking about it in terms of gifts has stopped me taking those little things for granted.
Here’s a photo of a lady giving me free cheese. Thank you, lady.