Monday, September 13, 2004

Red Neck Floaties

This past Friday morning I’m at work and on hold with AT&T customer service and since I had nothing better to do at the moment, I started reading the “Fill-Air” inflatable packing that came in the box with the cell phones we just ordered when I noticed something that made me laugh. On the bottom of this “bag of air” was this symbol that states that you are not to use it as a flotation device. Now, this little bag of air isn’t much bigger than my hand. Yes, it would float, but what idiot would begin to think that this little bag of air would actually be useful in saving their life in an emergency? Seriously, if I was standing at the edge of a pool, and someone was drowning, I don’t see my self saying “here I’ll save you!” and tossing them this bag for them to use to stay afloat. The thing is, if it’s printed on the bag as one of many cautionary items, then at some point some redneck idiot got the bright idea to duct tape them to their child’s arms for their child to use as floaties in the cement pond.

This got me to thinking about other “warnings” I see printed on day-to-day items. Take for instance, toner. You know the powdery stuff that you put in copiers and printers. Our toner bottles at work say, “Do not eat”. Now what intelligent person would look at a bottle of toner and think “you know, I’m kind of hungry and that toner sure does look good. I think I’ll go get a spoon.”? HELLO! But again, if it’s printed on the bottle, then someone had to have tried it and probably tried to sue the company when they were surprised by the unpleasant outcome (I’m sure we’ve all heard about the lady who sued McDonald’s because she spilt hot coffee on her self, hence the phrase “caution HOT” now seen on their coffee cups.)

Yes, I have done some stupid things in my life – tossing a cigarette lighter in the fireplace to try to get my logs to light being at the top of this list – but I am generally a sensible person and I should have known better. I should have thought through the process and used what little I know about physics and gravity to know that when that cigarette lighter got hot and exploded, it was not going to stay put and it would go somewhere (thank goodness I had the common sense to close the screen to the fireplace). Scientists say that we only use 10% of our brain, but seriously – I think some people are using the wrong 10%.

1 comment:

Grant said...

I try to only use 2% of my brain. But it is amazing what warnings we have on products these days just to avoid lawsuits.