Wednesday, July 14, 2010

A Spoonful of Mystery

My folks get the San Jose Mercury, whose Sunday edition at one point came packed in with Parade Magazine, which is to journalism what productive, violent belching is to opera. However, the Merc isn’t what it used to be and now its Sunday issue features USA Weekend, a Parade knockoff that manages to suck harder and with teeth. No Howard Huge. No Marilyn vos Savant. And an even worse version of those letters in which idiots ask questions about celebrities that could be solved in mere moments by Google and IMDb.

Still, I felt compelled to flip through this past Sunday’s Parade Magazine-like publication, and while doing so I was confronted with this:

And then I puked in my mouth a little, because the foamy brown substance in the spoon was not readily identifiable. I mean, I knew what it probably was and it only took a moment for me to see the Jell-O logo at the bottom of the page, but does this image read immediately as chocolate mousse to you all?

Don’t go straight to all things scatological — fecal matters, if you will — because I first saw this as some kind of rock, then some sort of crispy thing… and then, yeah, shit. None of these seem like associations the wiggly, jiggly people at Jell-O Corp would want me to make with this product. And even if this photo is meant to depict chocolate mousse, doesn’t it look too perfectly egg-shaped there in the spoon? To the point of making it unappetizing? Poo associations aside?

Of course, the people who actively read USA Weekend would be used to consuming harmful, nutrient-free substances, so perhaps this advertisement isn’t an inappropriate one for this publication.

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