humorpop culture
The Not So Hidden Persuaders: The Power of Media Upon Us All
by Marjorie Dorfman

page 2

wise shopperDon’t get me wrong. I do believe one gets what one pays for in most areas of life, especially professional services of any kind. I am not parsimonious or even frugal by any standards. But what’s true is true. An item is not necessarily better because it is cheaper. Conversely, a familiar and/or more expensive item is not necessarily better either! There has to be a balance between cost and quality and that’s what missing today. Some standards never change and that’s why brand names backed by a solid reputation should never be ignored. For example, if I were going to buy a new television, I would look for a name with a history and credibility such as GE, RCA, Sharp or Sony. Between those examples however, it is an advertising contest to the death as to which is better, and my decision would have to hinge on other factors. I would probably choose the brand I bought before or the brand my father had or one that a friend or colleague recommended. That’s a far cry from purchasing something because the name sounds "familiar."

advertisingSales in generic products are rising, as the public is becoming more and more discerning and sophisticated. Awareness has crept into the Wall Street market as well. On The Motley Fool (a program of stock recommendations) a pharmaceutical company that waits for the patents on brand name products to run out so that it can purchase generic ones was recently highlighted as a good investment. Although some might argue that this company awaits profit somewhat like an alligator hiding patiently in a leafy glade, others consider the move a simple case of hungry free enterprise. In either case, sales do reflect a trend and a change in consumer awareness.

duped shopperIn the end you may get what you pay for in reference to some things but not with others. In this case, the whole isn’t even equal to even some of its parts. (Like my brain.) The contradiction is not as black and white as being pregnant, for example, which either is a state of being or it isn’t. Gray is an individual color and each of us must decide what works and what doesn’t. But if you should awake tomorrow morning with a little black mark on the base of your neck, don’t say I didn’t warn you. It’s too late to run to Mr. Packard as he no longer lives in the world of breathing consumers. Just know that the time has come to either join the others with their little black marks or fight them and create your own little black mark. Consider changing the color, name or configuration on yours. Be sure you don’t call me though, whatever you do. I’m having enough trouble living with mine!

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humor pop culture
Culture is one thing and varnish another
R.W. Emerson, Journals, 1868

In the room, the women come and go, talking of Michelangelo
T.S. Eliot, The Love Song of J.Alfred Prufrock

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