What a week it has been around my household.

Have you been to PlanetRx.com? Right now you get three items of your choice, worth about $15, free.

This largesse is fall-out from the Internet wars.

Internet companies, as you know, vie to see who can lose the most money, as huge gains in sales and losses tend to drive up stock prices. Right now PlanetRx is vying with drugstore.com, part-owned by Amazon.com.

Drugstore.com is offering $15 off (at least it offered it to me) and 3-items-for-a-penny.

(Both offer free shipping with orders of modest size. Not to mention the convenience of not having to leave the house.)

I had heard good things about PlanetRx but hadn’t actually used it until I went to find athletic supporters. To do that, I typed goto.com (on my browser, and probably yours, you don’t even have to type “www”). Then, in GoTo’s search box, I typed “athletic supporters” (using the quotation marks to tell GoTo I was seeking that actual phrase). Up came a bunch of sites, the first two of which were dead on. Shopinprivate.com (“We carry all sorts of items that are embarrassing to buy in a store or pharmacy”) had jocks for $8.50. Over-the-counter.com (“Never be embarassed at the checkout again!”) turned out to feed into PlanetRx.com, which offered precisely the same brand for $6.99. I bought five.

Free shipping — and three other free items that I could choose from a reasonably interesting list.

Earlier in the week, at drugstore.com, I had gotten my 3-items-for-a-penny-each plus $15 off a bunch of containers of Coppertone mosquito-repelling sun tan lotion.

I am now ready to play tennis in any mosquito-infested swamp.

Netgrocer.com, meanwhile, was offering for free:

3 Cans of Spaghetti-Os
1 Box of Honey Crunch Corn Flakes
1 Box of Regular Corn Flakes
2 5-Packs of Bic Disposable Razors
4 Packages of Kool Aid Pink Lemonade Mix
1 Package of 15 Solo Plates

Estimated value: $15.69.

The offer may have expired by now and, in any case, you had to buy $25 of other stuff of your choosing and admit you liked Spaghetti-Os. (Last time I ordered from netgrocer, I got a free jar of olive oil without even asking for it.)

I’m not saying I have saved enough on these deals this week to make up for the money I’ve lost shorting Amazon. But I probably saved $40 in real cash money. You should, too!


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