East of the Sun, West of the Moon


Do The Math

Filed under: General — Erwin @ 2:51 pm

Oriental SnackI finally found, at Big Lots, the Japanese snacks that I had been looking for recently (because I haven’t had them since I last visited the Netherlands and I missed them).

Unfortunately what they sell are 3 ounce bags (in a box that could fit half a pound, easily) for $1.00 plus tax while the online store that I’ve been considering sells 1 pound bags for $2.99 plus tax and shipping. If you ignore the shipping that’s a great deal, $0.19 per ounce instead of $0.33 per ounce. The catch, of course, is that shipping means UPS, FedEx or DHL, where even the cheapest option for a 1 pound bag is around $10.00, destroying your initial advantage!

Now let’s try a few calculations. Suppose I’d want 5 pounds of these snacks (and yes, I am confident they’ll be eaten, M and I both love it).

  • Getting that in 3 ounce containers locally means buying 27 boxes. Ridiculous overpackaging aside, that’s $27.00 plus tax, so around $28.85.
  • Getting that in 5 bags of 1 pound each, online, will cost me $14.95, plus shipping cost of $10.33, makes a total of $25.20.

That’s heading in the right direction…

This gets even better when going up to 10 pounds: $57.80 versus $40.55. Even if the last bag goes a little stale towards the end that will be worth effort. To minimize that we’ll repackage one bag at a time, keeping the remaining 1 pound bags in better shape.

The downside to this approach is the need to store the bags somewhere convenient, but we can work that out. 🙂


  1. Hey. I’m too lazy to look for an email addy for you. So email me or something, please. I got a question for you.

    The short version is – I want to make a web page that aggregates RSS feeds for me, so I can check that page instead of the bookmarks page I use now. Did someone already make something I can just plug things into? I don’t know what question to ask Google, you see.

    Something like this the best bet? http://www.feedforall.com/free-php-script.htm

    Comment by Kisc — 2006/10/9 @ 5:12 pm

  2. I’ll go for or something and respond here. 🙂

    Been there, done that, but in the end I opted for aggregator software running on my desktop machine. That would be NetNewsWire, but there is quite a bit of free software out there as well (including a lite version of NNW itself).

    Speaking of, there is also the Google Reader which has recently been given a fresh look and might be worth checking out.

    Now, the reason I went for an actual aggregator like NNW is because it makes the lists of feeds easier to maintain, it offers a few different layouts for browsing your feeds, and (most importantly) keeps a configurable amount of feed history, with a convenient search function. A web-page that (only) show the HTML representation of the current RSS feed content can not compete with that. 🙂

    Hope that helps, and good luck!

    Comment by Erwin — 2006/10/9 @ 6:02 pm

  3. I’ll try the Google reader … mostly I want something that doesn’t depend on where I am. There are a lot of times when I’m not at my house, but want to check my stuff. Visiting family, at work, etc.

    Didn’t even know they had an aggregator like that, so sweet. I’m a google fan.

    … mostly.

    Comment by Kisc — 2006/10/9 @ 8:07 pm

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