ANNOUNCEMENT: No New Posts Until February 9

I’m currently in Japan with my wife (Hokkaido to be exact and it’s frickin’ cold) and I thought I’d be able to do touristy stuff during the day and then prepare blog posts at night. But I’m finding that to be difficult since we’re also doing touristy stuff at night.

So I’ve decided to just enjoy my first trip to Japan (and temperatures below 10 degrees) and wait until I get back to my warm rock in the middle of the Pacific Ocean to start posting again. But then again, some of you have been sending awesome Spotted photos that I really want to post, and I’m a workaholic.

But for now, I shall leave you with this:

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ANNOUNCEMENT: New Impulsive Buy Reviewer Leonard

My parents know it.

My friends have seen it.

I’m pretty sure my dog has witnessed it too.

It all starts with my jaw slowly dropping, next my eyes intensely widen, and this is followed by a huge gasp that is capped off by my entire body temporarily freezing. What just happened? No, not a medical emergency. Yours truly has just glanced at a NEW out-of-this-world…food item. OMG!!!

Hi everyone out there in internet land! My name is Leonard and as you can tell I am very excited to be the newest contributor to The Impulsive Buy. I hope to break the internet with my debut like Kim K. once did and amass more page views than a snippet of a sneak preview of the teaser to the teaser trailer to the latest superhero movie would.

I recently got my M.B.A. from UCLA Anderson and now I currently spend most of my time thinking about birthday parties with a side gig of learning about the worlds that different cartoon characters live in. No, seriously, though, I work at a party supplies company working on all the super exciting licensed products. We are always developing something new, which continues my obsession with the new and exciting. (As you can imagine, there are A LOT of gasps at work.)

Just like all the weird and wacky products that TIB showcases, my journey since undergrad at Penn State has been very eclectic. Rather than just boringly list off the places, I’d like to explain it through some of the signature food that I have experienced at each location. So let me see if you can guess where I have lived/worked/studied over the past few years. Gigantic smoky turkey legs, wiz covered cheesesteaks, taro flavored bubble tea topped with sea salt foam, huge hot dogs named after celebrities, and, for my current location, warm to the touch soft pretzels! What do you think? Did you get them all??

If you are having trouble, here is one hint: one location is repeated.

Got it?

Did you happen to say Disney World, Philadelphia, China, Los Angeles, and Philadelphia?

If so, then you are RIGHT! What’s the prize, you say? You get to read my upcoming reviews right here on the Impulsive Buy!!!! (And a big, but imaginary, pat on the back from me.)

On weekends I love to take a trip to my local grocery store. My friends or family rarely join me on this adventure because I could spend hours there combing the aisles for the newest piece of Impulsive Buy gold. For example, remember those green Ghostbusters Twinkies? I spent months and months tracking them down (My Mom even called up Hostess to end the madness) and then subsequently raved about them to my co-workers – JUST LOOK AT THAT EPIC GREEN COLOR.

So, get ready TIB readers because Lenny (that’s what I am called when fun is to be had) has just arrived fashionably late, which means the party can officially start!

ANNOUNCEMENT: 2016 Season of Giving Winners

Here are the winners of last year’s Season of Giving:

DAY 1 – Starbucks Gift Card


DAY 2 – Panda Express Gift Card

Karl M

DAY 3 – Wendy’s Gift Card


DAY 4 – Target Gift Card


DAY 5 – Subway Gift Card

Jordan A

DAY 6 – McDonald’s Arch Card


DAY 7 – Trader Joe’s Gift Card

Katie B

DAY 8 – Jack in the Box Gift Card

Laurie P

DAY 9 – Walgreens Gift Card


DAY 10 – Burger King Gift Card


DAY 11 – Walmart Gift Card


DAY 12 – Mystery Gift Card


Congratulations to all the winners!

Also, thanks to everyone who participated!

I hope to make the Season of Giving an annual thing and more than 12 days. So someone remind me in October or November. Thanks!

ANNOUNCEMENT: New Impulsive Buy Writer Brandon

Hello fellow fast-foodies! My name is Brandon and I have been tasked with the immense responsibility of going out into the world and trying so-called junk food. Too long have we lived in a world where the art of food criticism is reserved only to the realm of high-price gourmet. The selections of grocery store snack shelves and fast food windows may be cheap, and they may be mostly controlled by giant multinational companies, but these items deserve our respect!

Okay so maybe I don’t take fast food quite that seriously, but I sure do love indulging in the cheap, naughty, and quick. If you eat a lot of snack/junk food like me you know there is no worse feeling the dropping than dropping $5.50 for Carl’s Jr.’s latest burger offering only to realize that the burger is called the Bacon Threeway, includes bacon jam, and is absolutely disgusting. I throw away unfinished fast food burgers so you don’t have to.

Why I’m doing this? I just love to write, and I love junk food. I love it all, but I guess if I had to choose I’d say my favorite is anything that involves a fried potato. As a native from Boise, Idaho, I feel I have something of a sacred providence over all things potato. A Boise company provides, McDonald’s with all their fries after all.

I have a fine arts degree in creative writing, and when I’m not stuffing fried potatoes into my mouth I’m using the same greasy fingers to write poetry and fiction. So if my review for a bag of potato chips somehow morphs into a short story about the family of oddly shaped potato chips that live in the bag, try to bare with me. I’m sure I can come up with an ending where I brutally murder them all with my molars, so that I can actually explain what they taste like.

ANNOUNCEMENT: New Impulsive Buy Reviewer Chris

As a child, I was a product of cable TV, reruns, and the finest DSL internet access the fine folks at MSN could provide.

My parents did everything they could to avoid me turning into a total couch potato. They’d encourage me to play outside, despite our small Oregon town’s constant rain and lack of residents under the age of 50. Console video games were forbidden. But most critically of all, they limited fast food trips to once a week – Friday nights. What was at the time a sensible step to teach dietary responsibly, created something of a pavlovian link in my brain. McDonalds french fries, Taco Bell nacho cheese, and Burgerville milkshakes were more than food – they were the harbinger of weekend joy.

Considering I’m now being paid to review both junk food and video games, I guess my parents’ efforts didn’t exactly produce the intended outcome.

My fascination with junk food is always about the cutting edge, and items than transcend cliche. I’ve personally guzzled back gallons of Mountain Dew Game Fuel, without a hint of irony. Anytime I catch wind of a new Ben And Jerry’s Flavor or ludicrous Burger King sandwich, a hunger forms in my curious soul. Call it a hobby, an obsession, or just a poorly-justified eating disorder – I’m a sucker for the junk food industry’s cynical appeals. A good gimmick will never fail to grab my attention.

That force is what pulled me to The Impulsive Buy, of which I’ve been a regular reader for years. Checking out new Spotted on Shelves posts is a near-daily habit of mine, and have had a serious impact on my grocery habits. Joining the site as a reviewer is tremendously exciting. It’s a little bit like being asked to join The Avengers, if Thor was more concerned about fried chicken than defending Asgard.

As a contributor, I vow to put my taste buds on the line to get you all the #HotTakes on hot cakes, the rapid reactions on ramen, and a third pseudo-pun about reviews of fast food items.