Monday, February 05, 2007

I Love M&Ms, But Enough Already!

Many apologies for not visiting my favorite blog authors for several days. It will still take me a few days to catch up, but it was for a good cause. My husband and I, new empty nesters that we are, went into the city for a few days. We saw three terrific Broadway shows - Spamalot, The Drowsy Chaperone and Wicked. At discounted prices of course, because after all, we do have two in college now.

The tickets to Wicked were our most satisfying discount. The theater has a lottery, two hours before the show. We had tried five or six times before, since last spring, with no luck. We decided to give it another shot before coming home on Saturday. So we went to the theater, wrote our names on index cards and waited a half hour in the sub-freezing cold until they pulled out the lucky winners. Yes, as you have probably guessed, my dear husband's name was called so we "won" the opportunity to buy two FIRST ROW Orchestra tickets, valued at $110 a seat - for $25 each! Woohoo! The best part is that the show is sold out for months - and we were going to see it!

Well, we had an hour and a half to kill before the show started so we walked around Times Square a bit. Being chocoholics and slightly curious we went into a new "M&Ms World" store on Broadway. We walked in and all I could say was "I can't believe they based a two level store on a candy!" On the first floor we saw the M&M logo on everything - candy dispensers, pillows, onesies, tee-shirts, gym shorts, caps, keychains, collectibles - and of course, self-serve towers of M&Ms in 22 colors for $9 per pound.

Then we walked around to where we thought the stairs for the next level were and my husband stopped dead in his tracks, looked at me and said "You were wrong." I looked at him puzzled and said "What?" He said "It's not a two level store based on a candy. It's a THREE level store, based on a candy." I looked up past the stairs and by golly, he was right - there was level three, right above level two. My jaw dropped as we walked up to level two. We saw the M&M logo on oven mitts, kitchen towels, mugs, beach towels, car sun shields, kitchen canisters, luggage, tote bags, pajamas, jewelry, frames, party hats, playing cards, games, bibs, flip flops - and of course, self-serve towers of M&Ms in 22 colors for $9 per pound.

On to the third level where we saw the M&M logo on pens, lunchboxes, fuzzy slippers, magnets, pet coats, blankets, soap holders, toothbrush holders and toothbrushes - and of course, self-serve towers of M&Ms in 22 colors for $9 per pound. I have not listed everything available with an M&M logo - but I think you get the idea. What is more unbelievable to me than the fact that there were enough M&M logo products to fill THREE levels of a large store is that someone, somewhere actually thought this was a good basis for a store.

We did buy a small container of suitably colored M&Ms to send my daughter for Valentine's Day. My son does not like chocolate.


Oh - and Wicked was wonderful!

30 comments:

Dr.John said...

I was wondering for a minute if Wicked was as wonderful as the M& M s.

Sunflower Optimism said...

Too funny, Dr. John - Wicked was MUCH more wonderful than M&Ms! M&Ms are just a too sweet candy - Wicked was a brilliant prequel to The Wizard of Oz.

Mark said...

So glad to hear that you had a great New York kind of day!

Too cold for my taste. I plan a trip to the big apple in April.

Maybe I will see Wicked, I really want to see "The Odd Couple".

Sunflower Optimism said...

Mark, I'm not sure The Odd Couple is still running. I don't remember reading about it in a while.

There's always a store to dive into when NY gets too cold! ;-) But you're right, the city's more fun in the spring - and best in the summer, when everyone goes to the Hamptons, LOL.

Betty said...

You were so lucky to get to see the shows and what a price.
I had no idea that there would be a store of three levels of M&M products. I love M&Ms but could care less about the products other than the candy.

CreekHiker said...

What an amazing day with your hubby. You were awfully lucky with those tickets! I would have been in awe of the M&M store too! When you realized a small package of a few ounces is 75 cents... 9 dollars / pound might be reasonable!

Sunflower Optimism said...

Me too Betty - do I need M&M kitchen towels? I don't think so! But the shows were great! The tickets for all three shows for both of us totaled $220 - now that's a cheap date, for NYC!

------------------------------

It was a fun 3 days, CH. We love the city - both grew up there - it's always been my "playground." I think a pound of M&Ms at Target is around $3.99 or so - but of course, those don't come in a selection of 22 colors! LOL We would have gotten some for my son in his school colors - but he's not a big fan of chocolate.

Jackie said...

I'm so jealous of the fact that you got to see not one, but three, shows! How fun. I would love to visit the big city one day - but think I could skip the M&M store! :-) Some day, I'll get East.

QUASAR9 said...

Hi Sunflower, so you find it surprising that someone could come up with the idea of a three storey megastores 'dased' on candy in a Metropolis.
Ironically what is more surprising is that people will make it profitable at least during novelty time. But with 10 million people every day looking for a novelty or something they haven't seen or been to before - the future bode's well - at leastt for a while, and whilst they only pick cities like New York with a Broadway.

Alas, what attracts or lures men and women, light moths to light - more than candy & the bright lights

You americans have managed to successfully export megacasinos to the uk - I don't think they've quite realised that there just isn't as much money left to gameble in the uk (since the launch of lotteries and the demise of the 'pools' or footbal sweepstakes). But more important we do not have 300 million americans with more money than sense putting Las Vegas (UK) on their list of places to go before they die.

But hey, who is to say how others should spend the time of day - porn goes on & on, some broadway shows are still a hit years on - and teenagers have moved from comics and favourite rock or pop band to favourite 3D game and or characters (persona) in interactive games ...

Where shall we go next, the future is but ONE step away! And people like to 'pay' and play - for there is little can be done for 'free'

If only dying would become so expensive that one could not afford to die, but alas living still costs more & more & more.

Heimdallr said...

That was amazing luck with those tickets, you must have felt as if you were part of the show. Wonderful!
Sounds like a great city break.

Sandy

Sunflower Optimism said...

Hmmm Jackie - not sure where you could park that RV here! LOL. Seriously, NYC is a wonderful city - so much to do and see. Gee, even if you only sit on a street bench and watch the people go by that's plenty of entertainment.

We were really lucky with the ticket - cost us each $110 for all three shows - what a bargain!

Hope you make it over, it's worth at least one visit. Me - I would hate to ever live too far from my city :-)

Sunflower Optimism said...

Yes Quasar9, they have three of these M&M Megastores - I believe in Vegas, Orlando and NYC. All huge meccas for tourists with money to burn for cutesy stuff.

I don't really gamble, so not too knowledgeable about that area of your comment - although I do agree that some people have more money than they know what to do with. I walked through the M&Ms store thinking how I couldn't believe that this store and the tragedy in Darfur could exist in the same universe. I don't know what the solution is.

Many thanks for your comment.

Sunflower Optimism said...

It was wonderful Sandy - I never sat in the first row before. It was fun being able to look into the orchestra pit and talk to the conductor before the show. Also very cool to see the expressions on the faces of the actors, only a few feet away.

It was a great time in the city. We love our children dearly - but we are really enjoying our empty nest!

The Rev. Dr. Kate said...

How on God's earth did I miss the M & M store?? Not that I want M& M logoed merchandise, but 22 flavors of M & M's - I'll fork over the $9.00. A son who doesn't like chocolate?????? Where did you go wrong in your parenting??? I may have to reconsider our friendship - LOL!

goatman said...

Must be nice when you two can just buzz into the city for the plays. We get the NY Times and are always jealous that such wonders are available in the big city. Even movies never heard of, and probably never seen around here!
But it's quiet here.

Sunflower Optimism said...

Well, Rev. Kate, I was just at Target. You can get an XXL bag of M&Ms (3 lbs., 4 oz.) for $7.99. Not in 22 colors of course, but less than a third the price. About 56 cents per ounce at M&Ms World, vs 15 cents per ounce at Target.

As for my son and the "chocolate issue," I think if he didn't look so much like my husband the paternity might be questioned, LOL. We are constantly blaming each other on where we went wrong. Very sad. On the other hand - more chocolate for us!

QUASAR9 said...

Hi Sunflower, didn't mean to let the last comment flow so far off track.

But it is ironic how we are all still attracted by candy & cutesy stuff to buy. I guess sugar, sweets and money really do make the world go round (not literally) but rather the world as in those things which make up 'our' day.

Can't comment on the show, I've become adrift from live plays, but glad you enjoyed your day.
It is still the thing to do, even here in Cambridge, to go to London to see a show

QUASAR9 said...

Hey, but it's only an hour away by train, and not too bad to drive either in the evenings - after the rush hour. Life is good really!

Sunflower Optimism said...

Yes, Goatman, it's fun having the city so near. When then-BF (now hubby) and I were in college in the city, we would often shoot downtown on Friday afternoons to get student discount tickets for evening shows. We were starving students, but we had our priorities ;-)

You get that left-wing liberal rag too? LOL Those Sunday crossword puzzles have been making me crazy for over 30 years!

Sunflower Optimism said...

That's ok, I tend to go on when I am passionate about things, also. I think the cutesy stuff appeals to the tourists. I think one is freer with their money when they are on vacation, buying things they would not ordinarily buy at home.

I've been on a zero sugar diet for over a year now, because of an inner ear problem. It is amazing to me how so many foods have sugar, in one form or another. It's hard to get away from it. Best bet is to eat fresh, homemade food.

If you ever reconsider going to live plays, I can dig up a web site that has codes for discount tickets - even for the London theaters. Let me know.

Kat said...

Unbelievable...M&Ms so marketable they can fill a three story store. I'm just dieing to see Wicked, eventually, it will come to Columbus.

MamaLee said...

MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM. Gotta save up for a trip to that store!

Let me know if you use any instant messengers. If yes, email me - I'd love to chat with you on a regular basis!

Sunil said...

Times Square seems to have it all. I think it was a toys r' us that I took a out-of-towner to the other day and I felt that I was in some other world. They have a fourt foot ferris wheel inside the store!! My son loved the sights and sounds and seemed to positively revel in the whole thing... The extent to which some of the store designers can go to get attention is pretty amazing - hey, but that is what spurs growth and originality also.. Very interesting post as it makes you wonder how much a company (or maybe should read that as the advertising director for the company) could do with just one brand...

Ordinary Janet said...

How lucky that you got to see Wicked and with such good seats! And I like M&Ms, but I think that two minutes in that store would be enough for me. Too much of a good thing. I like the peanut ones, BTW.

Velvet Sacks said...

It might be a little early according to the calendar, but it sounds like you and your hubby had a valentine's sort of day. What a treat it must have been to have front-row seats for Wicked. And the M&M store? That's a little bit too Willy Wonka-ish even for a chocolate lover like me.

Sunflower Optimism said...

Kat, definitely go see Wicked if you get the chance. I think those of us who grew up watching The Wizard of Oz every Thanksgiving would especially appreciate it.

That store was so very strange. Not sure if there was more buying or gawking going on. We only spent $6, after our trip through all three levels.

Sunflower Optimism said...

MamaLee - save your pennies for something better. We weren't terribly impressed by the store. They didn't even have almond or dark chocolate M&Ms!

Sadly, I don't know how to IM. My kids wouldn't teach me or even help set me up - I think they consider it "their" domain, moms not allowed!

Sunflower Optimism said...

Yes, Sunil, that's what amazed me about M&Ms World - in my opinion, a little arrogant to build a whole store around a single brand! I've been to that Toys R Us store also - once - mind boggling. You should do a post on how all this go-go-go, constant stimuli affects the mind of a child. I read once that the increase of ADHD/ADD in children could be blamed partially on Sesame Street and other constantly changing stimuli. Children are not given the opportunity to focus on one thing for any significant length of time.

It's all about the logo, these days. I've been quasi "collecting" Tiffany catalogs for probably 25 years (yes, I'm a pack rat, but that's another post, LOL.) The jewelry used to be about beautiful design and interesting use of stones and metal. The latest one that came out this week has a comparatively large proportion of logo items. Same with Coach bags - used to be a discreet logo leather tag - now "C"s all over everything.

I'm sure there's also a post to be written about what precipitated this sea change in products and marketing/advertising.

Sunflower Optimism said...

Bummer Janet - all that logo merchandise - but no peanut, almond or dark chocolate M&MS! Just the regular, old, milk chocolate in self-serve towers of M&Ms in 22 colors for $9 per pound.

Sunflower Optimism said...

I think I forgot to thank you for your visit, Velvet! I guess it was an early Valentine's Day for us - although we don't really "celebrate" Valentine's Day. Hubby considers it a Hallmark holiday and thinks we should carry on all year as if it was Valentine's day EVERY day! Yeah right - but a box of chocolate would sure be nice! (no M&Ms thank you, LOL)

The front row seats were so much fun - winning them in a lottery made them extra special.