Written by Administrator
Thursday, 08 January 2009
In today’s floundering economy, it is heartening to know that at least one industry is still going strong – the television informercial market.
I can’t watch television without having several of these annoying advertisements appear on the screen, with their over-the-top pitchmen screaming at me about how wonderful their product is.
My new favorite is the infamous “Snuggie” – the blanket with sleeves. The commercial goes to great lengths to point out how “inconvenient’ a regular blanket can be. If the phone rings you have to get your arms out! Oh no!
I really love the fact that the “Snuggie” is nothing more than a backwards, floor length robe. That’s right. Get a fleece robe and wear it backwards and you have a “Snuggie.”
I have my own version of a snuggie; I put on a sweater. I can read a book, answer the phone or cook dinner, without the inconvenience of a blanket.
Then of course there is the “Sham Wow,” pitched by the annoying hipster, Vince Offer. His main pitch is that this “amazing, absorbent product,” made by the Germans no less, lasts for years and can clean up anything.
A quick search of the internet brings up hundreds of posts from people complaining that their “Sham Wow” fell apart after a few uses or couldn’t absorb a thimbleful of water.
What really strikes me funny is how Offer claims that I can spend $20 a month on paper towels. Really? Unless you wash your car, dry off after a shower or mop up the morning dew off your lawn every morning, I don’t think it is possible to use that much paper toweling in a month.
This brings me to the most annoying pitchman on television: Billy Mays.
This booming-voice braggart drowns out any other sound in the house when one of his commercials come on the air.
Mays is a highly sought after shill for many of the products you see on TV, because he sounds so commanding when he shouts out the virtues of whatever miracle glop he is selling. And because you see the commercials hundreds of times, you are led to believe that it actually works.
But, in reality, more often than not they don’t.
Let me give you a little advice: if a television ad sounds too good to be true – it probably is. Before you buy anything off the TV, do a little research on the internet. There are several websites, such as infomercialscams.com that will let you find out more about what you are getting in to.
Many complaints list problems with over billing, unadvertised long-term commitments and poor customer service.
Besides, if you a re diligent and really want the product, you can most likely find them on store shelves, despite the “not sold in stores” banner that accompanies most of the ads.
Now if you don’t mind, I’m going home and hook up my old “Super Bass-O-Matic ’76” and make a tuna smoothie.