Thursday, July 17, 2008

Free chocolate (and other sweet stories)

When I first started this blog, I never imagined that it would inspire complete strangers to send me free stuff.

Who knew that writing about my favourite food (chocolate, wine and Grape-Nuts) would lead to freebies being delivered to my door? You guys are awesome!

Over the years, all sorts of unsolicited packages have arrived in the mail -- from Tim Hortons' gift certificates to juice-box size wine to Grape-Nuts.

Well, I finally hit the motherload last week when a giant cardboard box filled with Dove chocolate was sent to my office. Some clever marketer correctly identified me as a chocolate lover, sent me a whole bunch of the stuff and asked me to spread the word online. How did they know I would totally sell out for chocolate?

I'm a bit of a chocolate snob (I prefer dark chocolate with a high cocoa content as opposed to the sugary stuff) so I gave almost all of it away to my co-workers.

The free chocolate was a huge hit at the office. It disappeared in about five minutes but the fun lasted all day. I unintentionally stirred up a bit of water-cooler gossip when I sent out an email to staff encouraging them to help themselves to the several pounds of chocolate I had dumped on the lunchroom table. Just for fun, I also wrote that it was sent to me by a secret admirer.

The funny thing is that people actually took me seriously. Everyone wanted to know who my mystery suitor was. One guy even stopped by my desk to give me a high-five.

"Whatever you’re doing, keep it up!"

Is this what married people think single life is all about? That we are constantly being wooed and pursued? I didn't have the heart to tell them the chocolate wasn't from a boyfriend-to-be but from a marketing company. Sigh.

Anyway, all of this free stuff has got me thinking. Maybe I should set my sights higher. Chocolate is good but (attention Canon marketers!) a new camera would be better!

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