humor, life lessons, mindfulness

A Bird In The Hand – for $19.99

“Right now I’m having amnesia and deja vu at the same time.  I think I’ve forgotten this before.” — Steven Wright

My challenges with sleeping are the stuff of family legend.  I fall into the arms of Morpheus every night, so exhausted that I don’t even remember that this is exactly the state in which I found myself the night before.  Ah well, there’s a lot one can learn at night – or not.  When I turned the tv on Saturday morning, I realized that absolutely nothing has changed since 1964.  It was kind of like ‘Groundhog Night’.


You can still buy Ronco knives for $19.99.  And though K-tel is no longer offering records that are requisite for any connoisseur’s collection, Time Life can send you a complete set of Motown cd’s for one low price.  They’ll even send you ‘The History of Time Life Books’ for free!!  But there’s more (the night is long my friends).  Want to make the perfect omelette?  They’ve got one – and as hard as it may be to believe, you will never serve a wilted, torn omelette again.  It’s also ideal for crepes and grilled cheese sandwiches, though not at the same time.  Apparently, there’s no need for scrubbing when you’re done either,  just rinse (cleanliness is a concept open to personal interpretation).  How I have lived without this gadget, I’ll never know.

I saw infomercials for hair removal systems, hair growth systems, wrinkle reducers, lip enhancers, shapewear that eliminates bulges, shapewear that provides bulges (if you want or need certain areas, um, pumped up shall we say), ten minute work-out programs which absorbed twenty-five minutes of air time,  mini veggie choppers, a multi-use colander which can also serve as a deep fryer or convenient cooked pasta remover (you’ll never have to haul the heavy pot to the sink again).  Personally, I think it also could be used with home highlighting kits – put it on your head and pull the hair through the holes.  Learn yoga, another language and how to be a better lover (perhaps with the organization system on sale, you can do all of these things at once).  Lose the weight that has settled around your mid-section, gain the six-pack worthy of  Adonis.

The best part about these products is that if you order immediately, you get a second one free (plus shipping and handling).  I guess that’s fabulous if you have hoarding tendencies, like to layer your shapewear or just have $20.00 that you’re itching to spend.  Given that these come-ons haven’t changed since I was a kid, I wonder what it says about us?  That we’re so easily seduced by consumerism that we’ll buy anything?  That we really do believe that one can click their heels three times and have magical results?  Perhaps we’ve never fully resolved our child-like naivete?

Or maybe, it’s just that programming in the middle of the night has always been – and will continue to be – just awful.  My new approach to early, early, early, mornings?  Pick up “War and Peace” and hit myself in the head.




35 thoughts on “A Bird In The Hand – for $19.99”

  1. You should have called me; I was wide awake, dreaming parched-mouth dreams of Himmler showing up at my door, worrying about my accountant, worried about my dogs, worried about my next book. Coughing my head off. I’ve always thought that these middle-of-the-night consumerist lures are ad buys strategically placed because they count on our blurry/bleary middle of the night worries. I once came home from college to find that my stepfather had bought a complete set of Ginsu knives because they “cut through steel.” “Why are you cutting through steel,” I asked. He shrugged and walked away.

    1. Laughing..and remember that after cutting through steel it could still slice a tomato? I always wondered about that.. I’m sorry you’re still coughing and miserable – definitely need to do something to avoid dreams of Himmler though. xo

  2. Ahh, my dear, you have *such* a way with words! I feel your pain–though I’m not often up in the middle of the night, I have on occasion found myself channel-surfing in despair, wondering how that little electronic gizmo could *possibly* eliminate the need to ever shave my legs again or how I would manage to make it through the next day without the mighty suction system of the “Blanket Saver” on my team! :-/

    Someone *just* this morning recommended a book to me that I’m going to check out called “Unconscious Branding: How Neuroscience Can Empower (and Inspire) Marketing.” Perhaps it will reveal the power behind the siren call of that pulsing bluish white light at 0-dark thirty. And I, too, have always wondered how in the heck those knives could tackle a tomato after shaving through steel! 😉 oxxo, l

    1. Oh – how could I forget That Blanket Saver!! Interesting topic – the impact of neuroscience on marketing efforts. Not sure I could slog my way through, but my hunch is that it’s probably pretty interesting stuff!! xox,

  3. Oh, Lord, I have insomnia. I don’t think I slept 10 minutes last might. However, I no long have TV, so I thankfully do not have a hand hammered Chinese wok to replace the one that I lost, Victoria Jackson skin care products, and the pocket fisherman. I would love to have the perfect pancake pan, and who know you needed a special…not, wait!…two special pans to make meatloaf! But wait, there’s more…!!

      1. Mimi, I do not have TV, or a credit card. I can order nothing, but I can typo to beat the band! That meatloaf pan with the rack and all?? It’s to die for…LOL

  4. I’ve had this habit lately of waking up exactly at 2:57 AM. Don’t know why that specific time but there it is on the clock – or on my watch during power outages. I don’t turn on the tv – especially since the night I was almost tempted to buy that bake pan that gives you nothing but corner pieces for your brownies.

    So I end up on the new/old iPad finding brilliant articles that I can’t find the next morning.

    The other night I dreamt the solution to the world’s problems – had something to do with chinese food containers. That’s all I remember. This was after the 2:57 mark. Maybe that’s why.

    I’d give you three perfect pancake makers for a good night’s sleep!!!

    – J.

    1. I happen to make the best chocolate chip pancakes on the East Coast (having perfected them over the years of my sons growing up) – with a plain old griddle that I got at the supermarket. You are absolutely right not to turn on the tv – but I don’t think we’re supposed to used our iPads either..Nonetheless, at some point, I just give up and cede to the morning. I hope you catch some good zzz’s soon my friend..

  5. Britain came late to this trend, but late night shopping channels are now available. Good to have no television.

  6. Laughing out loud over your oh so succinct litany of late-night infomercial offerings. I am imagining your with pen and paper, writing a list of all the crazy offers of quick fixes. And once again, you succeed at taking something so day-to-day and transforming it into not only something that makes time with your blog better than any buy-one -get -one free deal! xoxo

  7. I have never had a problem sleeping, well not much of a problem I have the odd night when I go to bed and my brain will not shut down………..and I think of silly things………or write blog posts in my head but of course by morning I have forgotten the post………….lol Now till shopping channels well I have never spent more then a few minutes watching any of them…………

  8. Love this! Stick with me and I can get you addicted to all kinds of bad TV. When I was in your situation I found the joys of RuPaul’s Drag Race on LOGO. Good stuff.

  9. Mimi, I love this post! I’m shaking my head… it’s been AGES since I saw those kinds of infomercials. They sound EXACTLY like those of decades gone by. And they sound like they’d be fun to watch–in smaller doses–just for kicks. Not that I’d ever buy anything. (Ha!)

  10. Funny…and what about those shipping charges? i once got attracted to one of those infomercials and found that the shipping was more than the item being sold; it was an instant and lifelong turnoff.

  11. Ah yes, the early, early, early, early mornings … i know them well.

    Some people call it insomnia. Or maybe you just are one of those who can survive on little sleep. As long as you get a few hours and feel refreshed, it may be best to just accept it and realise that you are part of the creative elite along with Nelson Mandela, Margaret Thatcher, Bill Clinton, Barack Obama, Winston Churchill, Napoleon Bonoparte, Margaret Thatcher, Kevin Rudd, Thomas Edison, Benjamin Franklin, Leonardo da Vinci, Madonna; all of whom claim they are / were able to survive on 3-6 hours sleep.

    Just think, instead of watching the TV and all the adverts for those kitchen gadgets – you could actually be inventing them!!

    1. Wow – I love to be a part of such an illustrious, creative group! And typically, I write in my most relaxed state in those wee hours – the quiet seems deeper, the defenses are down, etc…Hmm…there may be a post in this! 🙂

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