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Ormond Beach Observer Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012 6 years ago

Sensory overload: Put a sock in it


You know those times you go out for some sock shopping but you get so frazzled by all of the gimmicks and run-around from sock manufacturers that you start feeling light-headed and, before you know it, you’re passed out on the floor and a stocking boy has to stuff you inside a cart and wheel you back outside for air?

Me either. But apparently, this is an epidemic in the sock-shopping world. Lucky for us, though, Publix has come to the rescue.

Leafing through a recent sales circular, I came across an ad for a product that aims to serve as the vaccine to this plague: No Nonsense Socks.

Finally! I thought, grazing my fingers lustfully over the page.

Now, these are obviously not your everyday socks. These are socks — sans the nonsense. These are socks for people who have had enough of the tsunami of sock marketing out there. Socks for simple feet, wholesome, family-oriented feet who flat out don’t subscribe to the crass advertising adage that “sox sells.”

If you’re looking for antimicrobials, move along. If you were hoping for low-cut athletic style, this is not your day. And don’t you dare even think about asking for multiple colors.

These socks come in white, just white. If you’re so self-involved that you want black or, God help us, argyle, No Nonsense doesn’t want your business anyway.

I flipped to other pages but couldn’t help imagining the back of this sock package. It was official: I was in a new sock state of mind:

If you’re anything like us, here at No Nonsense Headquarters, you believe in simplicity. What you’re holding in your hands, well, they’re socks. You put them on your feet. You put them under shoes. They’re made of fabric, probably some elastic. If you put them on your hands and sew button eyes on them, they can be used as funny puppets — although this should not be done in excess, being that it borders so closely to nonsense.

This direct style of branding got me thinking about how everything should be named in the grocery store.

Cut the Crap Cookies. These are everybody’s favorite snack. Under ingredients on the back of the box, it says: Sugar, other stuff. In nutritional information, just: You’re kidding, right?

Pussyfoot-Free Fried Chicken. Low-Malarkey Milk. Don’t Be a Putz Peanut Butter. The possibilities here are endless!

Today, everything in the store is about options. I can’t buy a carton of O.J. without spending an hour at home beforehand researching what’s smarter, drinking the juice infused with antioxidants or the ones with calcium or vitamin D. Forget adding all three supplements to one jug — we just don’t have that kind of technology yet.

Then there’s the organics, which is a word I still don’t fully know the meaning of. I can’t be sure, but after a little homework I’m fairly positive it’s just a nice way to say “more expensive,” although most organic products also usually come packaged with a free side order of superiority, which is a nice bonus.

And then you go down the Health & Beauty aisle, and you’ve got to have a cosmetology degree just to know what in the name of all things holy the shampoo bottles are talking about.

So it’s good to have a beacon of clarity from the folks over at No Nonsense — even though, let’s face it, they would completely despise this column.


For more from Mike Cavaliere's Common Nonsense, CLICK HERE.

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