Posted by Nicci | Posted in Cleaning Aids, Household Products, Kitchen Products | Posted on 31-08-2011
I’m intrigued by the Flex Seal commercial. You know, the one where the guy makes a boat out of a screen door by sealing it with the liquid rubber sealant?
I’m amazed. Awestruck. I totally want to get a screen door and see if I can make it float.
That’s one of the things I love about infomercial product demonstrations. Not only do they point out the difficulties in every day tasks (“Why, now that you mention it, my blanket IS complicated.”), but they show you how effective a product is by using it for a purpose no one will ever need. Like making a boat out of a screen door–which, now that I think of it, might be a good idea in case of flooding. I wonder how Hurricane Irene would stand up to Flex Seal?
Intentional misuse of As Seen on TV products for demonstration purposes has been around as long as infomercials themselves. The original Ginsu knife infomercial from 1978 shows the knife being abused in all sorts of ways.
Let’s see . . . I can use my Ginsu knife to:
- Cut an aluminum can, because you never know when you might need slices of aluminum.
- Slice bread so thin you can see through it, because who really wants bread interfering with their sandwich?
- Chop wood, because using a knife is totally easier than using an ax.
You can even hammer your Ginsu knife. What better way to take out kitchen aggression than hammering the handle of your utensils?
Ginsu may have started the Product Abuse as Demonstration, but they sure aren’t the only ones to effectively utilize this technique.
- Mighty Putty can pull an 80,000 pound tractor trailer.
- Miracle Blade III can slice a pineapple. In mid-air.
- The Blendtec blender can pulverize your cell phone.
- The Oreck and Dyson vacuums can pick up a bowling ball.
- Speaking of bowling balls, you can drop one on a Simmons Beautyrest mattress without knocking over the pins.
And just watch the first few seconds of this Billy Mays OxiClean commercial:
You can remove stains from a bowl of water. A BOWL. OF WATER.
You have to admit that these crazy testing methods are certainly attention-getting. I mean, if I have to run over the same piece of popcorn fifteen times with my vacuum (before picking it up, inspecting it, and throwing it back on the floor for another couple of vacuum passes), then maybe I’d be more satisfied with a vacuum that could suction up a bowling ball. And if my blender can puree my wireless communication device, just imagine what it could do for my smoothies.
It’s important to think of all these contingent uses for your As Seen on TV products. After all, you wouldn’t want to get stuck up a creek without a screen door.