On the Trouble with Coupons

Yesterday, the writers went to Subway for lunch.

About a month ago, during their Scrabble promotion, I won a coupon for a free “Flatbread or Regular 6″ Sub.”

Note the order of the words. We will come back to this.

I ordered a Subway Melt Flatbread. It had bacon on it, and I’m not a fan of bacon, really, but I wanted to try something different. Ham and turkey and bacon. Lettuce and onion and tomato and honey mustard sauce. All on a flatbread. Lunchtime perfection, I thought.

The manager of the store told me that I could not use my Scrabble coupon. “I can’t accept this. It has to be a regular flatbread. The Subway Melt is a premium flatbread.”

I looked at him blankly. “So?”

“It has to be a regular flatbread.”

“That’s not what the coupon says.”

“Yes, it does. It says ‘regular’ here.”

“It says ‘regular 6” sub.’ It says nothing about the flatbread.”

“It has to be a regular sub.”

“It’s not a regular sub. It’s a flatbread. I get that if I wanted a sub for free, I’d have to get a regular sub. But the coupon says ‘flatbread.’ It doesn’t say ‘regular flatbread.’ It doesn’t say ‘premium flatbread.’ It just says ‘flatbread.'” And I read aloud the wording of the coupon — “Flatbread or Regular 6″ Sub.”

Don’t quibble with me, I’m a writer, and I will beat you to an incoherent pulp with words.

I got the sub, not for free, but for a dollar, which was the difference in price between a Premium Flatbread and a Regular Flatbread. Which, considering he wasn’t going to take a coupon at all, was a minor victory.

I didn’t even know there was a difference, that Subway had “tiers.” Of course, every time I go in Subway, it seems like they have a new pricing structure. It makes eating fresh difficult.

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