November 23, 2006

How to save 20% on your groceries for Thanksgiving

The other title for this entry is “Zune vs iPod, Wii vs PS3, Safeway vs Safeway”. Why?

iPods are made by Apple, which is in Cupertino. PS3s are made by Sony which has a big site in North San Jose. Bay Area companies.

Zunes on the other hand are made by Microsoft in Redmond, WA. Coincidentally, Wii’s are made by Nintendo – which is also in Redmond, WA!

But these places have one thing in common: Safeway. So thanks to a reader, I thought I’d investigate to see what the difference between the Safeways are. Here’s a table comparing the prices of common Thanksgiving items:

First, we’ll start with a turkey…

Here’s a turkey in Nintendo/Microsoft land:

nintendoturkey.jpg

… and the same turkey in Sony/Apple land:
sonyturkey.jpg

Here’s some milk in Nintendo/Microsoft land:

nintendomilk.jpg

… and the same turkey in Sony/Apple land:

sonymilk.jpg

Item Bay Area Redmond Difference
Turkey $7.99 $4.00 100%
Yellow Onions $0.30 $0.15 100%
Celery $1.00 $1.00 0%
Cranberries $2.50 $2.00 25%
Oranges $1.34 $1.79 -25%
Garlic $0.50 $0.50 0%
Lemons $0.99 $0.89 11%
Green Beans $2.49 $1.79 39%
Pork Sausage $3.49 $3.19 9%
Eggs $4.75 $3.49 36%
Milk $3.49 $2.40 45%
Corn $0.79 $0.75 5%
Olive Oil $8.39 $5.39 56%
Chicken Broth $0.60 $1.09 -45%
Flour $1.00 $1.00 0%
Sugar $3.09 $2.50 24%
Ginger $1.20 $0.80 50%
Pecans $8.50 $7.40 15%
Salt $2.79 $2.99 -7%
Rosemary $2.72 $3.21 -15%
Honey $7.79 $7.01 11%
Black Olives $0.80 $0.79 1%
Green Onion $0.99 $0.79 25%
Pumpkin Pie $4.99 $5.49 -9%
Spinach $3.69 $3.29 12%
Grape Jelly $3.39 $2.23 52%
Butter $3.00 $2.50 20%
Biscuits $2.79 $2.39 17%
Tomatoes $0.63 $0.75 -16%
Orange Juice $6.59 $6.29 5%
Potatoes $3.99 $2.99 33%
Carrots $0.79 $0.79 0%
Rice $4.80 $3.85 25%
Grey Poupon $4.29 $3.29 30%
French Fries $3.99 $3.29 21%
Ketchup $3.59 $2.59 39%
Stuffing $3.21 $2.18 47%
Ham $7.49 $6.99 7%

Average difference: 20% more expensive

(Just to be clear – these were the exact same products on both sides. Same brand, same quality, same count – everything. You can verify the results easily using Safeway.com)

So now you know why the PS3 and iPod are so expensive, compared to the Wii and the Zune. Because the groceries are more expensive too. :)
Want to save money on your groceries? Easy! Leave the Bay Area for some place that’s not special like Seattle metro area.

Of course if you leave the the Bay Area, you’ll find that they don’t have any Chinese restaurants, Korean restaurants, Japanese restaurants, Thai restaurants, Vietnamese restaurants, gays, smart people, guacamole, tech companies, snow sports, hiking, mountains, liberals, In-n-outs, or 9 months of sun. And let’s not forget our cheap housing, amazing public schools, great roads, low taxes, and lack of traffic.

Yeah. I didn’t think you’d leave. It’s just too special here. :)

Happy Thanksgiving!

Comments (10) -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:19 am






November 22, 2006

Dude, where's my car… uh… house?

MLSlistings Property Detail for MLS number 644502
1399 E SAN ANTONIO ST
San Jose, CA 95116
1399esan.jpg

$539,000

This Single Family Residence has the following features:
MLS#: 644502 Approx Age: 81 Years Approx Sq Ft: 780
Detached Single Family 1 Story 2 Bedrooms
1 Bathroom 1 Shower over Tub 1 Tub

Is it just me, or is that house’s width about the same as the sedan parked in front?

Click here to post a comment -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:50 am

November 21, 2006

Anyone who could fog a mirror could get a 105 percent loan

Housing prices expected to drop more / Berkeley economist says recovery will take 3 or 4 years
The number of buyers who purchased their homes with unconventional loans, or mortgages that start out with extremely low payments and in some cases allow borrowers to rack up more debt than equity, also raise concerns about the stability of the housing market, Rosen said.

“Anyone who could fog a mirror could get a 105 percent loan,” he said. “And that means anybody.”

My understanding is that if you can’t fog a mirror, then you can only get 80%.

Click here to post a comment -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:54 pm

When your garage has a scary lump

MLSlistings Property Detail for MLS number 643215
310 A ST
Colma, CA 94014
310a.jpg

$590,000

This Single Family Residence has the following features:
MLS#: 643215 Approx Age: Unavailable Approx Sq Ft: 750
Detached Single Family 1 Story Colonial
2 Bedrooms 1&1/2 Bathrooms 1 Stall Shower

Burbed usually doesn’t post about Colma – but what the heck is up with that garage? And doesn’t it look like there’s one window missing from the front of that house?

Click here to post a comment -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:44 am

November 20, 2006

$1mil for a bad acid trip in Cupertino

MLSlistings Property Detail for MLS number 665926

21105 HAZELBROOK DR
Cupertino, CA 95014
$1,098,000

21105hazel-a.jpg

This Single Family Residence has the following features:
MLS#: 665926 Approx Age: 56 Years Approx Sq Ft: 1191
Detached Single Family 1 Story Contemporary
3 Bedrooms 1 Bathroom 1 Shower over Tub

If you thought this was a bad acid trip so far… it’s about to get worse:

21105hazel-b.jpg

I bet I know what happened here. The owner (who btw, will not move out until 2007) thought “the houses next to mine sell for millions… why shouldn’t mine?”

Let’s take a look at the neighbors:

21105hazel-c.jpg

Oh look at that! Those houses are actually nice! Sure they have 1sqft of lawn because they’re McMansions… but still! I guess there’s a difference after all.

Welcome to Cupertino!

(Thanks to reader Guillaume!)

Click here to post a comment -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:04 am

November 19, 2006

No bust in South Bay – OF COURSE!

MAKE ‘EM AN OFFER / As they struggle to sell new homes, many builders can’t refuse a bargainer / Overstocked builders ready to bargain
The market is strongest in the South Bay, where developers say they are offering few, if any, price breaks.

A strong resurgence in the technology sector and solid job growth in Silicon Valley are driving continued demand for new homes. “You have higher household income and not as much supply on the market in the South Bay,” Pulte’s Kalmbach said.

This is obvious. Was there any doubt that the South Bay, Silicon Valley, The Best Place On Earth would ever bust?

Click here to post a comment -- Posted by: burbed @ 9:18 am

November 18, 2006

What is California?

MercuryNews.com | 09/03/2006 | Freeway lifestyle nears a dead end
On a recent morning in Sacramento, the scene reflected in Felix Izarraras’ sunglasses is a video clip of flannel-gray pavement and shiny guardrails. He’s a California Highway Patrol officer and also an astute observer of the interstate network — “the most beautiful highway system in the world.”

“The interstates,” he says, “represent America to me.”

The grid, which California historian Kevin Starr calls an “epic of public-works construction that facilitated the rise of California as a mega-state,” is Izarraras’ turf. Cruising I-5 and other highways, he has learned to read these roads — the date stamp on the bridge that suggests a deteriorating infrastructure; the new Ikea strategically placed near major freeways, hatcheries for a big-box culture we depend on for our cereal, Polo shirts and lawn furniture; the skid marks that hint at the breakneck speeds and sudden stops that define our daily lives.

“Californians are used to getting there and getting there quickly,” says Izarraras, who recalls as a kid in L.A. “looking up and all you saw was freeway,” with everyone going somewhere — fast. “To really embrace the California way of life, whether it’s seeking business or pleasure, it has to be now. These roads allow that to happen. The interstates are California.”

Apparently sitting in stalled traffic is California.

Click here to post a comment -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:46 am

November 17, 2006

Have you ever wanted to live in a box?

MLSlistings Property Detail for MLS number 658139
205 EAST AV
San Bruno, CA 94066

205east.jpg

$549,000
Open House Showing
Sunday, November 05, 2006 1:30 PM – 4:00 PM
LOWEST PRICE SFR IN SAN BRUNO! NEAT 2BD!
The lowest priced home in San Bruno! Beautifully updated with freshly painted interior, brand new carpets, spacious kitchen with a separate breakfast and laundry rooms. Don’t miss this excellent buy!

This Single Family Residence has the following features:
MLS#: 658139 Approx Age: 76 Years Approx Sq Ft: 780
Detached Single Family 1 Story 2 Bedrooms

Box stores are all the rage – so why not make like BestBuy and live in one?

Makes sense to me!

Click here to post a comment -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:34 am

November 16, 2006

The world's first siamese house?

MLSlistings Property Detail for MLS number 664058
203 LEXINGTON AV
Redwood City, CA 94062
203lexington.jpg

$749,000
Open House Showing
Saturday, October 21, 2006 1:30 PM – 4:30 PM
Sunday, October 22, 2006 1:30 PM – 4:30 PM
Charming, 3 bedroom, 1 bath home in quiet Westside neighborhood.

This Single Family Residence has the following features:
MLS#: 664058 Approx Age: 69 Years Approx Sq Ft: 1190
Detached Single Family 2 Stories Traditional
3 Bedrooms 1 Bathroom 1 Shower over Tub

Uh… what’s the giant cube attached to this house for? Is it part of the house? Because the fence sort of divides them.

Very strange!

Click here to post a comment -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:45 am

November 15, 2006

"Gorgeous 10 years Sunnyvale Singal Family Home"

MLSlistings Property Detail for MLS number 666033
460 N FAIROAKS AV
Sunnyvale, CA 94085

460fairoaks.jpg

$625,850
Open House Showing
Saturday, November 04, 2006 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Sunday, November 05, 2006 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Reduced $85k must see
Gorgeous 10 years Sunnyvale Singal Family House

* Larry 3 bedroom Single Family House, 1249sqf
* New Interior/Exterior Paint
* Hardwood/Carpeted Floors
* double pane windows New Water Heater
* New A/C, appliances. Washer/Dryer
* close to parks, freeway access, downtown and shopping

This Single Family Residence has the following features:
MLS#: 666033 Approx Age: 10 Years Approx Sq Ft: 1249
Detached Single Family 2 Stories 3 Bedrooms

1) What the heck? Is this house hiding behind other houses because it is shy?

2) What’s a singal house? Was it designed by a famous Singal?
3-6% my friends… worth it?

Click here to post a comment -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:14 am