18 July 2010

The Last Day of Estrogen Packed Dinners

Brother: The record with my friends is 8 pieces of Max Chicken.
Me: Wow, eight! That's a lot of estrogen packed goodness.
Brother: Huh?
Me: Check if he's still a guy tomorrow.

We just never learn. On the last day of the Max Chicken-All-You-Can, my siblings and I went to Max Roxas Boulevard to take advantage of this rare promotion. Celebrating it's 65th year in providing sarap-to-the-bones chicken, for a price of 165 pesos and running from June 17 to July 17th, one can have all the chicken one can enjoy in one sitting. Served in quarters, waiters go around with baskets full of those moist, yummy, oil-drenched chicken.

My brother and I have already tried it before and have stomached enough chicken to last us a whole month, but we decided to give it one more chance before the promotion completely dies away.

Ever since the promotion started, queues in Max became impossibly long. One time, my friends and I had to wait for almost an hour just to be seated.

Once the chicken arrived on our tables, we attacked. With my bare hands, I began peeling away the crispy, fatty skin and tearing the soft tender meat.

When the cadavers keep piling up, you don't ask how
Think of all the people guaranteed a good time now.

The first chicken was small, but delicious. Then came the second, then the third. When the fourth arrived, I was already tasting the oil more than enjoying the chicken, and with a heavy cholesterol-filled heart, I conceded. My siblings all concluded their chicken fiesta by their fifth piece. One thing consistent though was that, whenever we've neared our limits, we end up getting "chicken high" - laughing at the most trivial comments and emphasizing the most minute details of anything. We were "drunk" with chicken.

Not really very pleasing, but this was dinner.

The marginal utility of my Max chicken consumption is 3. I've already lost satisfaction by the fourth. It was no longer appetizing, in fact I was feeling more and more repulsed with every bite I had to endure. Lesson learned? Moderation. Moderation. Moderation.

Assessing the marketing strategy used by Max, I would like to assume that they have earned quite a lot from the promotion because of three things. First, consumers tend to be quite greedy, that is why buffets earn a lot of money. Hearing "unlimited", most people would blindly and gladly jump into the bandwagon, sometimes not considering the rule of diminishing utility. It's a challenge, and it's something novel.

Secondly, people don't usually just order the chicken, they tend to pair it with something else, as drinks, desserts, side dishes and rice.

And thirdly, checking the market, most cooked whole chickens sold on the streets are priced at 150-200 pesos. Given that, an average individual can eat a total of 3 to 4 pieces, tantamount to a whole chicken. At 165, that would be the rough cost of chicken already marked up with profit, and thus would mean, there is still some possible profit for the company.

Either way, I think Max did a wonderful promotion, and I applaud the servers for putting up with the demands and pressures of the diners. I'm sure it was a chaotic, hectic environment they've endured for the past month. I wonder what surprise they have up their sleeves next year.

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