Hawking Up Hairballs

Friday, April 17, 2009

Fools For Advertising

We've all been brainwashed by the advertising industry, some of us more than others. That's something that most of us know, but sometimes little things will really bring it home to you. This morning I was at a nearby Kroger market. They're pushing the idea of bringing your own bags to take your groceries home in. Not a bad idea. All of those paper and plastic bags are a big waste of resources, not to mention the product packaging, like cereal boxes and such. For those who don't have bags of their own, Kroger is selling them. With a Kroger logo on it. Let me say that again. They want you to buy a bag with a Kroger logo on it. And I'm willing to bet that the overwhelming majority of people who pass through that store see nothing wrong with that. I do, and you'd better believe it. That's advertising for Kroger and I, for one, am not going to pay to advertise for Kroger.

Of course, they're really pikers when it comes to this kind of marketing. Here in Atlanta, we have the World of Coca-Cola. It's a museum about the history of the Coca-Cola company and its products. They charge an entrance fee of fifteen bucks for adults and ten bucks for kids. In the first place, I can't imagine why anyone would want to visit such a museum, even if it were free. Coca-Cola is not a food product. It's little better than a drug and I'm not saying that from a supposed height of moral superiority. I drink a helluva lot of Diet Coke myself, but I don't delude myself as to what it is. The real stuff with the fructose or sugar in it is even better. But it's still dope. If they're going to have a museum like this why not the World of Cocaine or the World of Heroin? And speaking of cocaine, there was a time when there was cocaine in Coca-Cola. I remember my grandfather, who lived all of his life in St. Augustine, Floria, telling me about the people who would line up waiting for the store to open in the morning so they could get their Coca-Cola fix.

Well, all that be as it may, I suppose Coke isn't as bad as cigarettes but, in the World of Coca-Cola, they have a retail shop where you can buy all kinds of items with the Coke logo on them, from tee shirts and jackets to cups and glasses. Again, I ask you, why the hell would anyone pay for the "privilege" of advertising Coca-Cola? A nice, bright red tee shirt or hoodie might be nice with that white logo on the front, but it should be a freebie, Jack. But no, there are plenty of fools who not only pony up to enter the museum but to carry away some memorabilia. When people have no more sense than that, it's no wonder we're awash in consumer debt.


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