Bikini Season

I saw my first bikini of the season today. It was pink with large blue flowers strategically placed in completely inappropriate places. I’m blushing just thinking about it. The only thing was, it was a little showy for a white mannequin without a head, or legs and arms for that matter. Of course, it was on a mannequin. (duh) This is January and it’s twenty degrees outside. I don’t know what the wind chill was, but a girl wearing that thing on a day like today would certainly feel it. Her skin would turn a nice shade of blue to match the flowers.

As you might have guessed, I was in a department store, and you’d be right. Then again, you might have guessed I was in the natural history museum, and I would wonder what kind of weirdo you were. Or perhaps, you might have guessed the winning Powerball numbers, in which case I want to be your friend. Actually, now that I think about it, you might have guessed any number of things. Most having absolutely nothing to do with today’s topic. So, in the interest of focus, let’s all just decide I was in the department store, and continue.

Above the previously stated mannequin wearing a bikini was a photograph of a young girl, on a beach, wearing the very same bikini. Oh my! It was a perfect advertisement. I was feeling warmer and warmer just looking at the picture, and I was definitely thinking about the beach.

After staring long enough to appreciate the artwork and mood of the picture, but not long enough to get thrown out by security, (it’s a fine line) I moved along to the task at hand. I was there to find, and purchase, a new winter coat. I was hoping to get one for Christmas, but didn’t, no matter how much I had hinted it to my family. Consequently, I was forced to forge ahead, into the cold cruel world, wearing naught but the tattered remnants of last year’s coat, in order to appropriate a new one all by myself. Now I have a question: do you think that last line was sad enough to get me one next year?

Either way, I was at the store, looking for a coat. The thing is, I couldn’t find one. Not a winter coat in the place. Oh, they had light sweaters and spring jackets, but nothing with a lining. It was depressing. I came there to buy a new coat and the one I had was better than anything they had.  I stopped a lady filling shelves and asked her why.

What I got was a lesson on marketing. Did you know, you can never sell things when a person needs them? To do so is some kind of cardinal sin. You can’t sell coats when it’s cold outside. For marketers that’s way too late. You must sell coats when it’s warm out, and no one could possibly use it. That way we are prepared for later. Marketers however, never consider normal people like me, who will undoubtedly lose a coat bought six months early. What they fail to consider is those people, again like me, who have lost the said coat purchased during the summer, still need one. But that can certainly NOT happen. When people need coats, you have to sell bikinis, because folks are going to need them in six months. Make sense? Well if it does, I sure wish you’d explain it to me.

So it turns out, when I am cold, I can only purchase warm weather gear. My real problem with all of this, other than the fact I have to wear my old coat, is it makes me constantly depressed. Like my most recent trip, I saw nothing but bikinis in the store so it made me depressed to look out at the howling wind, and see the melting slop at the stores entrance. I want to see the beach pictured, not the mess outside. Then it all happens again in the summer. You walk in to a store in eighty-degree weather, and see only coats, hats, and gloves. Winter’s coming! I get so bummed. Then I go home and feel worse as the weather girl tells me to, “Enjoy it while you can, because the six-month forecast looks like record snowfall this year.” Perhaps I should just stay in bed.

While we’re on the subject, I truly believe everyone in the marketing field must be sadists. I bet there’s a little box to check on the application, right next to, “Have you ever been convicted of a felony?” There must be. Nice, compassionate people just can’t be in marketers. Think about it. What is the job of marketing? Answer, to make you feel bad.

The whole point of setting up displays is to make you want stuff. Stuff you probably don’t want, but, it’s even more than that. They don’t only want you to want their item, they make you think you need it. Tell me true, do you think a French coffee press is going to get you more dates? Yes, I’ll admit, it makes good coffee, but the display goes way beyond that. The display vaguely states that coffee, made in their press, will lure people to your house for their morning coffee. No matter how they make their coffee, yours will be so superior, they will show up on your doorstep begging for your secret. The only way to get rid of them, according to the marketing department, will be to convince them to purchase their own miracle machine. Some displays go even further. They hint at, that if you mention this coffee wonder, while out at night, you will be able to entice the special person you just met home for breakfast coffee. What happens in between is, of course, your choice. World domination can be yours, if you own a French coffee press. With all of those factors in your favor, how can you not buy one? Cost is no object.

Speaking of cost, I don’t know about you, but I have limited funds. If someone says to me, “Only ninety-nine dollars a month” I say “No thank you.” Marketers seem to think everyone’s a kazillionaire. But if you’re not, it’s okay because, they can then suggest a credit card, so you can spend money like one. After you do, there is another marketing company suggesting a service, to get you out of debt fast, for a small fee. Talk about selling ice cream to Eskimos. Excuse me, but I go to a debt company because I have spent too much. I don’t have a small fee! But somehow, no matter how foolish it is in the real world, it makes sense in marketing world.

Another good marketing ploy is the demonstration. You’ve seen the displays where someone has the miracle cleaner. It cleans everything, if it’s on the display. Of course, this one small bottle is concentrated, so it will last a thousand years. You take it home. Now I’m not saying it’s not a decent cleaner. It probably is. But I am saying that nothing on the silly display is actually in your house. Consequently, you put this bottle under the kitchen sink with all the others you bought when you heard they would clean everything.

Well, I have to go now, I just heard about a stunning new product which actually make my kids eat vegetables. This one has to be legit, it says so right on the display. 


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