What was once purely speculative theory has been verified this very morning. Oh sure, the Scientific Method would have me go through a bunch of control scenarios and all that, but I am nevertheless satisfied with the results to report my findings here and now.
I get my morning coffee at a stand located inside my local Albertsons grocery store. Every now and then, patrons at this particular location are rewarded with a coupon – which comes attached to the receipt – for a free coffee drink. I admit I’m pretty lucky about getting them, but I was still shocked one day when I got such a coupon attached to the end of a normal grocery receipt. In the past, the free drink coupons only came with coffee receipts.
Theory: It stands to reason that the registers in the coffee stand and those out in the main grocery are networked together. Patrons are required to have their Albertsons Cards scanned in order to get the free drink slip, which leads me to believe there is quite possibly a bug in the system which causes the coffee stand register to fail to inform the other registers the coupon has been dispensed.
Proof: Admittedly forgoing quite a few scientific control protocols, I will make a grocery purchase immediately after buying coffee. I will do this twice: once after receiving a free drink coupon and once after failing to receive said coupon.
Alright, then. Sunday morning, I purchased coffee for Karin and myself and did not get a free drink coupon. Jerks. As I expected, my purchase of cinnamon rolls and milk at the grocery registers did not produce the coupon, either.
This morning, I purchased the same coffees I did on Sunday. This time, a free drink slip did come with my receipt. Woot! When I went to the exact same grocery checkout and purchased a bag of cat food, I was rewarded with a second free drink coupon. Good enough for me. The theory is sound.
Yes, I should have made sure to purchase the same grocery product both times.
Yes, I should have repeated both sides of the experiment ad nauseum.
Yes, I should make a calculated profusion of different grocery purchases without making any coffee purchases and check those receipts as well.
Yes, I should try it on every day of the week to rule out the phenomenon being a Tuesday-only thing.*
Yes, there are eight more of these sentences that any scientist worth his weight in microscope slides could bore you with.
The point is this: Karin and I get to have coffee again tomorrow and we don’t have to pay diddly for it.
* this one, of course, could whirl chaotically out of control like a Mandelbrot set if you overthink it.