As I mentioned the other day (as if you didn’t already know it), inflation and other money-related matters don’t interest me much, but occasionally some small detail grabs my attention for maybe half a minute.
That was the case when I went to buy some Fritos to enjoy with chili — I’m not a big chip-eater, but I consider the Bandito‘s product to be essential to the full enjoyment of chili — and was struck by the sign here that boasted the apparently startlingly-low price of $4.49.
So of course, I immediately wondered, “How many of these little bags do I get for that amount?”
I figured it would have been at least two, and I definitely wouldn’t have felt like I was getting a bargain at the price.
And when I’m really honest about the value of things, and assess what I think it really ought to cost, I set the number at five bags. I’m applying the AMIAVI (that’s the Absolute, Moderately Inflation-Adjusted Value of an Item). No, don’t Google that. That’s my own, made-up standard which, since it’s based in personal experience, makes way more sense to me than such more generally employed acronyms such as CPI or EBITDA.
Only I can apply this standard, because no one else has the sufficiently detailed knowledge of my life experiences. (If I figure out a way to monetize this special skill, I’ll let you know.) In this case, I remember that in the vending machine in the main hall of Garrison-Williams School (nowadays shortened to “Williams School“) in Norfolk, Va., the private school where I attended 1st grade because my birthday was inconveniently timed for the public schools, you could get a small, kids-lunch-sized bag of Fritos for a nickel. Yes, 5 cents. I can’t prove that, but that’s the way I remember it, and that’s what is relevant to the AMIAVI.
Note that I’m allowing generously for inflation here, expecting only five bags for the lordly sum of $4.45. That’s because I’m applying the easygoing AMIAVI. If I were applying my stricter, but seldom-used, ANIAVI (Absolute, NonInflation-Adjusted Value of an Item), five bags would be worth a quarter. That means I could get at least 17, and maybe 18 bags. But that would be the little, kiddy bags, and several (but not many) of those would fit in one of the bags pictured above, so let’s go with the AMIAVI, which involves less math and more gut feeling.
Anyway, enough with the complicated monetary terms. What do you think one of the bags in the picture is really worth? Apply any standard you like, but it would be cool if you’d also explain it…