Tuesday, May 13, 2008

As seen on TV

Hey, been a long time. How are you? We are fine.

(Awkward moment of silence.)

So, Z has finally been drifting away from the toddler cartoons toward more advanced kid stuff. Her current favorites are "Growing Up Creepy," about a human girl who was adopted as a baby by a couple of bugs. She's a "little different, not everyday" as the opening song, which Z loves, goes. It's cute, and the little girl is real goth.

Another favorite is "Grossology," about a brother and sister team who work for the Department of Grossology. Yeah, they investigate gross stuff, like the one episode where they all got stuck in school for the weekend while a mad scientist uses the empty building to work on his giant external colon experiment. They defeat this...thing...by feeding it lots and lots of prunes. Oh, and the mad scientist uses tapeworms as weapons.

I don't mind the new shows all that much, as I've gotten really tired of Dora, but unfortunately they are on a channel that also shows a lot of commercials, and Z's been quite taken with a number of them. But not the ones you would suspect. She's not bugging me about all these toys she wants. No. The commercials she likes are infomercials. This kid suddenly knows the name Billy Mays, and keeps telling me that we need to buy things from him. I keep telling her that we shouldn't trust Billy Mays, as the stuff we see on TV commercials doesn't always work as well as they say.

Having said that, after taking a quick inventory of some of my stuff, I realize I do actually have a tub of Oxyclean. And frankly it works pretty well when you add it to a load of colors. But I get it at Target.

So now, she tells me that we really need to buy the "Awesome Auger," which "takes the hard work out of yard work" (scam report here), and the "Pancake Puff" maker (which supposedly can be quite tasty). Now, the Pancake Puff thingy isn't a Billy Mays product, but it is an infomercial. Why these sales shows are so interesting to a five year old is curious to me. I mean, sure, especially when we didn't have cable...or hell, who am I kidding, even now...they can be fascinating things to watch. And yes, sometimes I do want to buy, but you should almost never buy these things off the TV because the products are almost always extremely cheaply made, and the shipping and handling charges are outrageous. The Awesome Auger link above lists countless stories of idiot consumers, obviously tired of all the hard work from their yard work, were charged twice as much or more in shipping and handling charges as for the products.

People, Walgreens almost always has shelf space devoted to these products. Go there sometime if you really want to try something out. Also, Big Lots. They sometimes have lots of them.

And if I see a Pancake Puff maker, I just might buy it.


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