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.

ANNOUNCEMENT: It’s The Impulsive Buy’s Season of Giving (2016 Edition)

About this time every year, we…

Wait, let me double check something.

(searches TIB)

About this time almost every year, we hold a prize drawing to give away gift cards because it’s the season of giving gift cards. This year, we’re doing something, but a little different. In the past it was just one prize drawing, but this year there will be multiple drawings.

Twelve to be exact, which will be spread out over 12 days. And that begins tomorrow, December 14. Oh, I just realized it’s like the Twelve Days of Christmas. Except there’s only one gift card every day, no gold rings, no geese, and none of you are my true loves.

Okay, so I guess it’s not at all like the Twelve Days of Christmas.

The gift cards are from twelve different stores and fast food chains. You’ll have to visit the blog every day to find out what’s being offered.

The title of these posts will begin with “2016 SEASON OF GIVING.” Because we’re having a new drawing every day, we’ll be accepting entries (via the comments) for each gift card for only a 24 hour period. The prize drawing posts will go up at 12:00 a.m. Hawaii Standard Time (2:00 a.m. Pacific, 5:00 a.m. Eastern) and once the 24 hours have passed, the comments for that post will close. The winner will be announced in the days that follow.

As with all our prize drawings, it’s only open to U.S. residents and those who are 18 years old or older.

Good luck!

ANNOUNCEMENT: New Impulsive Buy Reviewer Brian

I’ve been preparing for this opportunity ever since I saw a Life cereal commercial and thought “Big whoop–I’d eat anything AND would survive mixing pop rocks with cola”. Ever since I wrote a poem for the first grade play about how perplexing it was (and still is) that tomatoes are fruit. Ever since I ran around the McDonald’s Playplace pointing out the Hamburgler was actually committing a hate crime and Mayor McCheese had a vendetta to settle.

My current interest and passion for new food products would be considered largely unacceptable by most members of society. I have been known to drive to six or seven locations in a day if I discover a product I must have. Six or seven isn’t THAT many, but it is if you’d like to maintain a family or a job or anything else that has a semblance of a 37 year old’s non-vagabond existence. And even when I don’t know something’s out there, I have a keen, systematic eye that I apply to convenience stores and supermarkets, scanning my eyes in all the right places (soda coolers, candy displays, potato chips, and the almighty holiday clearance section) in an efficient fashion that makes me feel that somehow I haven’t invested nearly as much time in this “hobby” as I have.

When I had less money at my disposal (my “monastic” grad school years en route to becoming a school psychologist) I would find a new product I was excited about, purchase one, and try it. If I liked it, I would then often engage in wild goose chases, trying to find the product again, only to meet with crippling, constant disappointment. As my wallet grew more proportional to my desire for Jolly Ranchers soda and Mint Skittles, I discovered that purchasing multiple items of a new product was effective insurance against the “one night stand” phenomenon I had incurred. However, I also found it was a proper way to fill your pantry with the dud products of the universe, the items so bad that you couldn’t pawn them off on the unsuspecting with a straight face. You might call it the “Why you don’t give out your address on Tinder”.

My family is subject to these whims now, as we try to find a happy medium. Two packages of new Oreos make it through the Ellis Island that is the grocery checkout (the worst Oreos will still get eaten by someone at 2am), but I invest more effort into defending my purchase of dessert Pringles than a court-appointed attorney. Ultimately, the cream rises to the top (save for the “Vanilla Heat” creamer I inflicted upon my loved ones). My students are not safe either, like the time I had them eating the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd degree burn Doritos in a contest to win the extra cup of Rita’s Water Ice I had purchased. A true battle for the ages (of eight and up).

In all honesty, I think if someone took a close look at my behavior, they might consider it to be a little bit insane — for a person who doesn’t work in the food review industry. Therefore, this opportunity to include you all on my never-ending quest is a chance to restore my sanity, without me changing how I operate or responding to every Rorschach test with obscure product names like “Takis!” and “Bugles!” This is a match made in Heavenly Hash, so sound the, ahem, bugle–let’s get this hunt started.