Saturday, 22 July 2017

The Poetry of Labels

I've just been cleaning the oven with a product that, the label assures me, 'laughs in the face of baked-on food. Without the need for rubbing, scrubbing or agitating, it dissolves stubborn baked-on grease, oil and fat within minutes... Simply sponge or brush on and after five minutes wipe off for [a] gleaming, sparkling oven every time.' The Directions include the soothing injuction, 'Leave to dwell for five minutes.' I like that 'dwell'...
  Needless to say, far from laughing in the face of baked-on food, this cleaner sighed weakly and capitulated. Even with a deal of rubbing, scrubbing and agitating, it left behind a black impasto of rock-hard gunk, from which only the major promontories had been rubbed, scrubbed and agitated away. Not a gleam or a sparkle to be seen, and if there was any laughing, it was the gunk laughing in the face of the puny oven cleaner that promised to much. I covered the bottom of the oven with a patented liner (that also promises much) and hoped for better days.
 

6 comments:

  1. A marketing world that promises so much and then disappoints! A Quisling of a cleaner. Recalcitrant triumphalist gunk and a geography of frustration. I think this is a paradigm of modern life and that there's material here for a mini-series.

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  2. NaHCO3 + a little H2O. Make a paste and lash it on. Pour decent malt whiskey and settle down with a comfortable Compton-Burnett. Sleep soundly and, come morning, drift down toward the kitchen. Take a little vinegar and clean off the paste from the previous day and, bingo - new oven. Cost in lucre? 70 pence tops. Score effort out of ten? - about two. Satisfaction level out of ten? - eleven. Sell Reckitt Benckiser shares now.

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  3. Damn - yes, of course! Sodium Bicarbonate! I even have some in the cupboard. Thanks for the tip, Mm - duly noted.
    I think the Poetry of Labels could well become an occasional series, tho few labels rise to the level of that 'dwell'...

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  4. Hasn't Mrs Nige learnt how to do this?

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  5. This is me giving a bitter laugh.

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