Thanks Very Little, Target

It beats a kick in the pants, but not much else.

For several years now, Target has sent me a birthday “gift”. Specifically, it comes from “Target Circle™”, their loyalty program I apparently signed up for at some point in 2019.1 While writing this post, I checked in to see just how much I’ve used Target Circle™:

$0.00 in Target Circle usage
Apparently, I used it $0.00 worth.

I don’t shop at Target very often, but I’ve certain spent a bit of money there in the past three years, That said, I’ve also never done anything to make sure my reward information is linked to those few purchases I did make. Nevertheless! Despite my obvious disinterest (or perhaps because of it), each year Target emails me near my birthday with this offer:

A 5% discount from Target
This is superior to only four discounts they might provide.

5% off is better than nothing, but it’s not really very enticing. However, what I do enjoy is the carve-outs listed in the fine print.2 Target excludes nearly 100 products and brands, including alcohol, Apple, Google, Hasbro, LG and Samsung TVs, video game consoles from Facebook, Nintendo, Microsoft, and Sony, and even Weber grills. Basically, if you’re interested in it, you probably won’t get 5% off. But hey, feel free to stock up on, I don’t know, deodorant and toothpaste at a not-so-fabulous discount, unless those fall under “clinic & pharmacy”, which they very well might.3

An Assorted List of Amusing Items Which Target Will Not Allow to Be Discounted by a Measly 5%

  • HALO Baby, Honest Baby, and Hudson Baby
    There’s no restriction listed for DEVIL Baby, Liar Baby, or East River Baby.

  • Galactic Snackin’ Grogu
    “Grogu” is apparently the real name for “Baby Yoda”. And I guess he snacks, possibly even galactically.

  • Plan B
    People in need of the morning-after pill are stressed enough. Does Target really need to add to their woes by not providing 5% off on this item?

  • Elf on the Shelf
    I don’t think this little snitch belongs in children’s lives at even 95% off.

  • Dairy milk
    This is interesting, as it indicates they have a better profit margin on the trendy alternative milks like almond, oat, and even pea milk (Yes, that’s a thing).

  • Polder
    I’d never heard of this brand, which apparently makes home products that are “useful, beautiful and better”. I can’t say their name is very appealing.

  • Thomas Tranes (sic) & Cranes Super Tower
    I like to imagine an alternate reality where Thomas is not a British tank engine, but an AC condenser with a Wisconsin accent. Or an Irish one. Or both!

  • Tylenol PM pain relief
    This bizarre item stood out to three different people who skimmed the list. Is Tylenol PM a luxury brand, and if so, when the hell did that happen?

I hope I can remember to check on this next year, to see what’s hot and what’s not.


  1. Said program has a trademark the company seemingly hasn’t even registered, as indicated by their use of ™ rather than ®. ↩︎

  2. Here’s the full list of excluded items:

    Excludes alcohol, Apple products, Barbie (Camper, Dreamhouse, Dreamplane, Malibu House and Townhouse), Beats Fit Pro, Beats Flex, Beats Powerbeats Pro, Beats Studio Buds, Bose, Cards Against Humanity, Casper, clinic & pharmacy, Cricut, dairy milk, DockATot, Dockers, Disney Ultimate Princess Castle, Do-a-Dot, DSLR cameras & lenses, Dyson, Elf on the Shelf, Elvie, Facebook, Oculus and Portal, face masks (Dolan, Sanctuary & Sugar Fix brands), Fisher Price Laugh n Learn, Fisher Price Little People Frozen Elsa’s Enchanted Lights Palace, Fitbit, Galactic Snackin’ Grogu, gift cards, Google, HALO Baby, Hasbro Games (Classic Monopoly, Connect Four, Jenga, Rubik’s Cube, Sorry, Trouble), Hatch Maternity, Hot Wheels (Ultimate Garage, Action Massive Loop Mayhem, Mario Kart Rainbow Road Trackset, Volcano Arena Playset), Honest Baby, HP Inc., Hudson Baby, Imaginext Transforming Bat-Tech Batbot, Infant Optics, Instant Pot, JBL, Lamaze, LEGO, Levi’s Red Label, LG OLED TV, limited-time designer partnerships, Luvable Friends, Masters of the Universe Masterverse Ultimate Battle Cat, Mega Bloks, mobile contracts, Monica and Andy, Nerf Ultra and Hyper, Ninja, Nintendo hardware and Switch games, Polder, Peg Perego, Philips Avent, Plan B, power shave, power dental, prepaid cards, PlayStation consoles and accessories, Quincy Mae, Revival, Samsung TVs, Shark, simplehuman, Sonos, Sony Electronics, Take Action, Target Optical, Tempur-Sealy, Thomas Tranes & Cranes Super Tower, Touched by Nature, Trading Cards, Traeger, Tylenol PM pain relief, Ulta Beauty at Target Brands, Unlocked phones, Vera Bradley handbags, Weber, What Do You Meme?, Xbox consoles and accessories, and Zoe Doll. ↩︎

  3. But not electric toothbrushes, if I understand what “power dental” means.↩︎