That 4 Letter "F" Word
When some one refers to the 4 letter "F" word, many people immediately assume they are referring to the obscenity that is depicted in the pictures on the right side of the screen here ---->
In most cases, those assumers would be correct. I mean, it is definitely easier to refer to this particular word as "that 4 letter "F" word." Especially when in social gatherings--it sounds more politically correct than blurting out "FUCK!" Although, it does have a therapeutic effect. After a long, frustrating day when nothing is going right, it is a great way to relieve stress. A barrage of "F-bombs" can truly calm a person down.
For years, this word was considered taboo. It was only muttered by men, under their breath, and it was unheard of for a woman to utter this profanity. Recently, however, it has become commonplace for men and women alike to be blurting out this word as easily as they say their own name. Heck, even kids are getting in on the action nowadays.
And as much fun as it is to say "fuck" that is not the 4 letter "F" word that I am referring to here.
The New 4 Letter "F" Word
Today's culture has made another 4 letter "F" word taboo. What is it you ask?
F*R*E*E -- FREE!
That's right, FREE is the new 4 letter "F" word that make people gasp and speak it with disgust in their voices.
Many people are probably already shaking their heads no in disagreement with me. How could getting something for nothing be bad? It is here that I will concede--It's not bad. In fact, it is the exact opposite. It is great!! I love getting FREE stuff. But, what makes this word taboo, is that it doesn't mean anything anymore. It is nothing more than a gimmick. A sick, twisted method employed by marketers to reel in an unsuspecting consumer! Allow me to explain...
The Real Definition
According to the Free Dictionary Online, the definition of free is "costing nothing; gratuitous."
Very simple and easy to remember. A person gets something and it does not cost a thing. Nothing! Not a single red cent!
So, why is it when something is offered as being free there is always some fine print that implies just the opposite?
Allow me to indulge you with some examples.
It's Really NOT Free -- No Matter What the Clever Advertising Says!
Example #1 -- Infomercials! These are famous for offering something for FREE that you have to pay for. Just yesterday I was watching TV when a commercial for the new Eco-bottle came on. Now, this is a reusable water bottle that is made of stainless steel as opposed to plastic that will sit in a landfill for years. It is selling for $9.99 per bottle. But Wait! If you call right now, they will include a second bottle for FREE!! All you have to do is pay separate shipping and handling! Uhhh....could someone explain how, exactly this is considered free?? Most of the time the shipping and handling is just as much as the product you are buying. This isn't Free! It's a scam! Throw the second damn bottle in the box with the one I am buying and give it to me FREE!! That is afterall, what you said.
Example #2 -- I got a flyer in the mail from Dunkin Donuts. Now, I am not a coffee drinker but I have a weakness for their Boston Creme doughnuts. Needless to say, I was overjoyed when I got this flyer and across the front of it in big letters, it proclaimed FREE DONUT! WooHoo!!! I eargerly tear open the flyer to get the coupon for my free donut only to learn that I get a free donut -- with the purchase of any size coffee! WHAT?!?!?!? Again people--NOT FREE!
Example #3 -- I did a Google web search for "free stuff" and of course millions of sites popped up. I clicked on the very first site on the list that promoted itself as the "largest directories of freebies online." Upon visiting this site, the first link was for a $1,000 Home Depot Gift Card! Now, we are in the process of adding on 3 new bedrooms to our house, so I could definitely use this freebie! So I followed the link. Guess what? It's NOT FREE! In order to receive the "FREE" gift card, you must first complete a two page registration form then complete 13 -- Yes 13 -- sponsored offers! Every single one of these offers requires some type of monetary commitment.
Nothing is free anymore! There is always some catch. That dreaded fine print that you better read or you'll get a nasty surprise. It has become second nature for me to ask "What's the catch?" every single time something is offered for free. I am a skeptic and every one else should be as well.
Please feel *free* to leave your comments or your own stories of getting something for *free*. It is *free* to leave your comments here....simply become my fan then donate $1 to my kids' college fund.