Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Room 101

And this time, the candidate is...

Unnecessary labelling.

Example 1: serving suggestions.
Now, when I buy a tin of tuna, I buy a tin of tuna, the label of which shows said tuna on a piece of bread, with a piece of lettuce and a slice of lemon. And the tin announces that this is a serving suggestion. Are there people who see this tin in the supermarket, buy it, open it, and search in vain for the slice of bread, lettuce leaf, and portion of citrus fruit?

Or perhaps they might make the huge intellectual leap to understand that the photographer thought that it might be more photogenic for the tuna to nestle as part of a nicely arranged crusty snack, than to picture some bloke coming in from the pub, opening a tin, holding it over the sink,and necking tuna without garnish, in the absence of a nearby kebab shop.

Example 2: This bag is not a toy

Now, nobody would want a child to suffocate in a plastic bag. A warning is no bad thing, perhaps along the lines of not letting your child play with plastic bags. Accidents can happen through children coming across bags by accident. But even the thickest parent, the most deprived, doesn't think Christmas is that cheap. Don't patronise.

Example 3: Baby on Board

And exactly how do you think you will influence anybody's driving? Do you think that the sort of person who will drive after 8 WKDs, and with no insurance, is going to care?

And what of the responsible driver who is shunted by another car in icy conditions, and is forced to choose who to collide with, as they skid towards the cars in the approaching traffic?

There might be two cars with whom they could collide. One would have a 25 year old future Nobel Prize winner who might have a cure for cancer; his father, a 50 year old delegate at The United Nations, who is working towards an agreement for the suspension of the use of torture in certain nations; and his wife, a specialist in the treatment of brain tumours.

But no, because of the Baby on Board sticker, let's veer towards your son, who is summed up in the words of Pam Ayres:
"It's hard to say, when you look at your Wayne,
Why you bothered to have one at all."

Example 4: Hydrangea silliness.

Recently, some friends of ours gave us a pink Hydrangea as a housewarming present, and very nice it looks in the garden. But it came with a label which said:

"For decorative purposes only"

Well, for all those of us who expected our hydrangeas to be a bit more proactive in the DIY, cooking, or sexual departments, I guess we'll be disappointed.