Sunday, June 17, 2012

Still edible!

I'm noticing that a lot of claims on packaging seem to be nudging us toward an era of lowered expectations. No, I'm not talking about all the products that superfluously label themselves as "gluten-free!" or "0 grams cholesterol," although that's somewhat irritating. Instead, I'm thinking about the frozen pizza with the notice, "100% Real Cheese!", as if that was something to brag about. The cover of the Chock Full of Nuts coffee can reads "100% Coffee! No Nuts!", which I guess is the result of focus-grouping with stupid people. But what are we to make of the Ben & Jerry's container that proudly informs us "Still a pint!" This should not be necessary, but is, because Haagen Dasz has reduced its "pint" from 16 to 14 ounces. All this stuff reminds me of the spontaneous demonstrations of thanks for increasing the chocolate ration in Orwell's 1984, which take place a day after the chocolate ration has been reduced.

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