Non prescription drugs, “little” toys & headless dogs.

Been a while, sorry.

A few things have caught my attention since the last post. Those who know me might expect a rant about the current Smolensk goings-on but to be honest it’s nothing more than was expected so I don’t really have much to say although you’re more than welcome to chip in.

Drug ads have been catching my eye. There’s no shortage of them on TV here, must make up at least 50% of all adverts but that’s not the issue. What is interesting is the techniques they use to try and encourage purchase beyond the simple tactic of being in your face for so many minutes. Here’s a few recent twists:

  • Fear tactic – an ad for zgaga (heartburn) showing the acid-red contents of your stomach being “boiled alive” by flames from hell only to become calm blue waters after one small dose of whatever it is they are selling.
  • No prescription – increasing numbers of adverts claiming their drug is the strongest you can get without a prescription or that it used to need a prescription and now it doesn’t. Either way an encouragement to take stronger and stronger drugs.
  • Tastes awful – a guy with a hi-tech blue and red illuminated plastic body (blue = healthy, red = you’re dying) boldly exclaiming that his drugs taste awful “because they are made to work, not to taste good”. Nice one, they save money not having to make it taste nice and then make that a sales pitch!

Little toys. I was browsing Smyk trying to find a present for Zosia who has been a good girl recently and was struck by the number of toys for girls whose main selling point is that they are “tiny”. My Little Pony, Littlest Pet Shop, Polly Pocket and a whole raft of others. What’s worse is that they are getting smaller and smaller to the point that Littlest Pet Shop had to bring out Seriously Weeny Pet Shop and they still look gigantic compared to Microscopic Mary. I’m not exaggerating when I say that finding a toy that was not vertically challenged was pretty difficult. In the end I left with nothing because their entire collection was garbage. Where is one supposed to go to find a decent toy these days and what’s the attraction of miniature?

Headless dogs. I watched the news item yesterday about Polish teenagers sent to prison for tying a dog to the back of a car and then dragging it along until its head came off. I also remember watching the video a few days ago of a small kid throwing a cat around, bashing it against a wall and generally trying hard to kill it. What was surprising about the headless dog media is that it concentrated not what these idiots did but the fact that they were being punished for it and actually going to jail, which appeared to be a surprising turn of events. Usually they’d just throw it in a ditch and go find another dog to play with.

In the UK, home of animal welfare, this wouldn’t even be a news item because punishing people for cruelty to animals is perfectly normal whereas it seems that here, until this month at least, you could do pretty much what you liked to an animal and nothing was going to happen to you. I detect a real change in attitudes now, certainly in the media and therefore most likely to be picked up by the public at large as well.  Maybe the sad and lonely looking lady collecting for animal welfare by the Bomi checkouts will actually get someone other than us to contribute in future.

In UK news I was shocked by the video of the student demonstrator throwing a metal fire extinguisher off the roof of a seven-storey office building and trying hard, it seemed, to hit one of the crowd of policeman in the street below. That moron’s going to jail too. Maybe he and macho-dog-boy could share a cell and then we could find another sick-in-the-head youth to play with matches and petrol in there?


5 thoughts on “Non prescription drugs, “little” toys & headless dogs.

  1. Sick, sick, sick. Not just England then.

    Hope they find their match boy, but of course they won’t.

    When I write anything really downbeat, my son (only a little younger than you, Scatts) turns to his wife and says “Dad’s been on the whisky again.”

  2. The ‘tastes awful’ advert seems to have worked by surprising people that a company would advertise by using something bad about the product: I have heard others comment on it. Will people remember what the product is though?

    The kids being sent to a prison is just a rerun of an old story. Its part of the standard journalism cycle of: there has been a crime, someone has been arrested, someone has been convicted. Three space fillers for the price of one (or one story for the cost of three) – more if there’s complications.

  3. Sounds daft, but you’d been surprised how many people love the ‘no-prescription’ hook on drugs. I was given 16 pill-popping remedies to cure an occasional sneeze the other day by a colleague. Most of them are immune boosters with complicating sounding names such Rinosinobinathine…or something to that effect. Don’t buy it unless it’s paracetamol or its serious enough that you need a doctor to prescribe it.

  4. On the small toy front–I am only guessing, made in China?–just think how many MORE toys they can make, how much less storage space they would take up, and how they would affect the bottom line. That is why I think things are getting smaller–not because consumers want to have to buy their children microscopic lenses just to see the things but because whoever is making them is thinking about how many more of them they can sell if they make them smaller and smaller. Someone should find out if kids actually like them the size of atomic particles. If not, they should start boycotting them, which shouldn’t be difficult if they can’t see them ;).

  5. Come on, pharmacists also need to make a living. I wonder if there anywhere in EU is the same density of pharmacies as in Poland. It is ridiculous the amounts of remedies being “RECOMMENDED” by your local medicine man.

    Regarding the Toys, since when has SMYK been measuringstick for good toystores. Never. I really HATE that store/chain. Go to Graal and buy the little ones some good boardgames instead.

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