If my husband were smart, he’d move me to a warmer climate. It’s not that I hate cold weather. I actually enjoy cold air every once in awhile; it makes me feel alive. It’s just that I tend to stay indoors more when it’s cold. That wouldn’t be such a bad thing if I were more like my wacko, OCD-plagued mother who CLEANS FOR FUN.
I’m not, though. Not at all. Quite the opposite, in fact. There are few things I enjoy more than sitting on the sofa with my besties – the television and its magical remote.
I have an actual office in a real office building; however, I am fortunate enough to also have the option of working from home if, for instance, it’s really cold or rainy or windy. Or if I’m crampy or tired. Or if I just don’t feel like taking a shower.
Needless to say, I work from home a lot, especially during the winter months when the real estate market tends to slow down a bit.
There are few things more dangerous to our financial security than I am when I’m left unsupervised with a television, for all a company needs to do is invent a clever gadget and hire an excitable spokesperson to send me vaulting over the clutter and tripping over the dogs to get to my credit card.
Today’s product was the Wraptastic.
MUST. HAVE. ONE. (or two, as it were, because they’re going to send me a second one FOR FREE if I order NOW!)
The 60-second ads are bad enough, but I practically have seizures if I stumble across a 30-minute infomercial while channel surfing. My only prayer is that the item costs less than my mortgage payment because I WILL OWN IT. Don’t even get me started on the dangers of QVC and HSN. For the sake of my marriage, I have voluntarily banned myself from watching either of those networks. There’s something about that countdown clock that sends me into a buying frenzy.
Here are some items I’ve fallen prey to over the years:
Snuggies – I own four of them; two burgundy, two blue. I upgraded to the ‘plush’ version (because I work hard and I deserve it). They came with reading lights. I never used the reading lights, but I am a proud member of Snuggie Nation. My husband and my son mocked me mercilessly when I bought them, but I’ve caught both of them lounging in them. Total vindication.
Slap Chop – I don’t know what enthralled me about this particular item, except maybe the prospect of not being blinded with tears every time I chop an onion. It didn’t chop evenly, it scared the dogs, and it was a bitch to clean. Waste of money.
The Tony Little Gazelle – YOU CAN DO IT! No, you can’t. I can’t even begin to tell you how convinced I was that this product was going to be the solution to all of my problems.
Never trust a stout, coke-addled man with a ponytail.
I used my Gazelle exactly once and almost broke my hip. I felt (and looked) like an uncoordinated asshole. It’s been in my basement for about eight years. I would put it on Craigslist, but I’m not sure I want the losers on there judging me for having bought it.
Suzanne Somers’ ThighMaster – I thought this would be the PERFECT exercise ‘machine’. I could sit on the sofa and watch my soaps while I worked out! Who knew the dumb blonde of Three’s Company fame was such a genius??
Because she wasn’t. My thighs didn’t get any firmer. You know what they did get? Bruises. Turns out covering a spring-loaded contraption with foam rubber doesn’t prevent it from slipping out of place repeatedly and slamming into your legs. Fuck you, Suzanne Somers.
The Ab Roller – I mean, come ON! It’s a recliner with handles above the head! Look at the lady on the commercial! Look at her go! It’s so easyyyyy!
Only it’s not.
It’s sit-ups. Sit-ups hurt whether you’re on the floor or on a chair. Sit-ups are the devil.
Sold it for 50¢ at a yard sale.
Epilady – This is the most barbaric, medieval, misogynist piece of shit that was ever invented. Do you remember it, ladies? The commercial claimed that it would remove hair painlessly. It depicted a sexy woman running the contraption up and down her leg with seductive smile on her face. I couldn’t order that thing fast enough! I had fantasies about not having to shave my legs for weeks at a time. I could barely wait for it to arrive! When it finally came, I was dismayed that the instructions required that I not shave my legs for several days before using it. I waited the appropriate number of days, then gently placed Epilady on my leg…and screamed like an animal as it literally ripped the hair out of my skin by the roots!! It felt like someone had touched my leg with a cattle prod. I dropped it immediately and never used it again. What they clearly didn’t mention in the commercial was that the smiling idiot was high on nitrous oxide or heroine or oxy. Or that she had prosthetic legs. Obviously.
Pedi-Paws – The first time I attempted to clip my dog’s nails, I cut her to the quick. She let out the most pathetic yelp, yanked her paw away, and immediately started to lick me as though she were begging for forgiveness. I cried like a baby and never tried it again. Then I saw this commercial. What a brilliant invention! An elaborate emery board for dogs! Why didn’t I think of that??
Used it for about three seconds before she pulled her paw away from me, looked at me with disgust, rolled her eyes so far into her head she could see her brain, and walked away from me.
There were plenty of other purchases – the Doggy Steps, the Spin Around Organizer, the Debbie Meyer Green Bags, the Topsy Turvy Tomato Planter, the Smart Mop, the Shoes Under, the Oven Gloves, the Ped Egg, and Proactiv, just to name a few.
I’ll never forget the day I wandered into the housewares department at Boscov’s and saw the As Seen On TV display. I swear I heard a choir of angels sing. I stood frozen before it; it was as close to a religious experience as I’ve ever had.
God help me.