Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Generic Products: A Pictorial

Generic Soda

I am such a fan of generic soda, it's kind of retarded. I would make out with it, had it lips on it's cruel, metal mouth. In fact, I'm drinking generic soda RIGHT NOW, though sadly not the fine specimen of soda pop genericness you see pictured above (as this is not the suburbs, three decades ago). No, I'm currently taking care of some Big Fizz Cola, which is available at your local Rite Aid for a measly 79 cents and whatever dignity you've got left. It tastes like flat Jolt mixed with that Dr. Pepper lip gloss from when you were ten, but more specifically, it tastes like a motherfucking bargain. And for good measure, I've cut it with some generic brand vodka... Popov, from a plastic jug bought on sale while the liquor store clerk looked at me with a mixture of anger and pity. Yeah, yeah... for a grown-ass man, my drink choices sure are pathetic and speak to a life spent in efficiency apartments in the bad part of town. Whatever. BARGAIN!!!

Generic Cereal

People will try to tell you that the worst thing you can do to a child is punch them in the face while drunk or destroy their self-esteem through years of psychological torture and emotional abuse but the people who try to tell you that are fucking morons. The absolute WORST thing you can do to a child is bust out the Malt-O-Meal when he or she has friends at the house for a sleepover. "Oh, now, it's the exact same cereal... it's just cheaper!" Right. And you should plan on spending that money you've saved on Little Johnny or Susie's therapy bills after their entire class snaps on them all the way through graduation because they're the poor kids on welfare who's parents spent all the Honey Nut Cheerios money on crack rocks, so they had to buy the junk in bags from the bottom shelf, which, it should be pointed out, is totally the same stuff the janitor uses to clean up puke, it's true, Tyler's older bother told me so. Ask ten sixth graders which is scarier... the entire Saw franchise, or Mom offering their friends some Honey Nut Scooters... and you'll have nine sixth graders screaming, "not the bag... anything but THE BAG!!!" You'll also have one sixth grader who says he doesn't care, but fuck him... he lives with his grandparents and smells like sour milk.

Generic Medicine

It's pretty much all I buy, but that's only because I'm broke and too fat to get away with shoplifting the good stuff. Look, I know it's just like the cereal... basically the same as the name brand, but more affordable and whatever... but, I don't know, I feel like it probably doesn't work as well as it's more spendy counterparts. Like when heroin dealers cut their smack with baby laxatives or baking powder... I just kind of assume that the manufacturers are skimping on the actual drugs and putting in, for all we know, bleach or anthrax or the ground up bones of Navajo warriors they found in the factory sub-basement. What I'm trying to say is this: Generic medicine is most likely cursed like the house in Poltergeist and we're all going to get sucked into an inter-dimensional void because we use it all the time, or at the very least we're going to get attacked by a creepy clown puppet.

Generic Pickles

Alright, I know these aren't generic pickles, strictly speaking. They're foreign pickles, and weird ones at that... seriously, what's that white, honeycomb-ish thing, besides deeply troubling? But here's the thing... do you have any idea how hard it is to find a picture of generic pickles? I searched for HOURS (several minutes) and found nothing. Nada. Zip. Pictures of gourmet, hand-crafted, virgin caressed pickles jarred by monks and farted on by The Jonas Brothers? Sure! Tons of them. Whole organic farmer's markets worth. But what of the pale, limp pickles in a smudged glass jar with a crooked label? What of the Val-U-Gherkin? The internet is oddly barren of any photographic evidence of such a product and I think that speaks to a larger, class-based conspiracy to keep down the blue collar worker by... withholding... pictures of affordable food... okay, look, I haven't worked out all the details yet, but know that the conspiracy is vast and probably involves aliens.

Generic Beer

A thing of the past, sadly, like the snap-brim fedora and a general faith in our nation's government. But can you imagine how great it would have been to wander into a Pathmark or a Tom Thumb or a Ralph's and pick up a sixer of low-quality, barely-drinkable cat pee for the price of a McDonald's hamburger? My god, the 1970s were a hobo drifter's paradise, all shabby jackets and post-Nixon anxieties and the rise of pornography and amazing, crappy beer. What a wonderful time to be alive and have no standards whatsoever. Seriously, I'm building a time machine and growing out a thick Fu Manchu-style mustache.

Non-Generic Cake

I recognize that this isn't in keeping with the stated theme of the post... in fact, it's the exact opposite; a seemingly generic product (cake) given a name brand (7-Up) for no reason other than to create mass confusion amongst a population suddenly forced to consider the possibility that baked goods can taste like soda pop. I mean, sure, you COULD make an argument that the cake most likely contains 7-Up as one of it's ingredients... and, hey, you might be right... but I think we all know what's really going on here. Remember the pickle conspiracy? Well the powers that be got sick of smelling like brine all the time. They've refocused their energies into the brave, new world of power-branded pastries. Be on guard for Campbell's Soup Muffins and Gillette Fusion Lemon Bars and Ace Bandages wrapped around crullers as jackbooted fascists take over the world!!! Somehow. Again, I really haven't thought this through all the way to the end. But, oh yes... it's happening.


Blogger jason quinones said...

a time machine!! awesome! is it a delorean?? lemme know when it's finished so we can go back to 1970 whatever and get piss drunk on pathmark beer, sneek into a showing of deep throat, and then off to plato's retreat.

9:57 AM  
Blogger AndSheWas said...

We are opposites in some ways - I hate generic soda and love generic cereal. I did a blog post back in April praising the taste of Foodtown Cocoa Peanut Butter Spheres, but hating on RC Cola. Is that generic? And Faygo, I like Faygo, but is that generic?

10:36 AM  
Blogger ML said...

the powers that be. :) way to go.

10:41 AM  
Blogger Lioux said...


I'm mailing you a check for $20.00.

This post concerns me.

11:01 AM  
Blogger mmyers said...

There used to be an aisle at Winn-Dixie (in my youth) that was only generic products and they were all white packaging with black letters. And one of them was just labeled "Beer". I knew, when I was old enough, I would drink "Beer". Sadly, I never got the chance.

11:43 AM  
Blogger Subway Gal said...

7-Up cake?? I had to look twice because I thought you photoshopped that pic. That sounds just awful!!! But please tell me you, or someone you know, tried some because I'm dying to know what it tasted like.

12:37 PM  
Blogger Clinton said...

Jason... I'll keep you posted. Gotta give my 'stache time to grown and I need to find enough denim from which to make a lesiure suit of ulitmate luxury.

And She Was... Don't misunderstand me, as an adult, I love generic cereal. Buy it all the time. It's only bad when you're a kid because of the shame and beatings that come with it. Also, no prizes.

ML... Smiley back at you.

Lioux... Hooray, free money! Confidentially, I'm going to spend it all on ham.

Subway... Can't say I've personally had 7-Up cake, but I bet it's one of those things that's WAY better than it sounds.

1:20 PM  
Blogger Clinton said...

Mmeyrs... Sorry, skipped right over you. Yeah, man, why don't they bring that back! The look is classic and the price is right. I mean it's disgusting, I'm sure, but still.

1:21 PM  
Blogger Todd said...

Two sentences into this post, I thought "He'd better talk about generic beer." Thanks for not letting me down.

Totally agree about the cereal. I still remember that horrible day when my mom brought home fake Fruit Loops. I cried.

Lastly, The Wife recently brought home Krasdale brand macaroni and cheese spirals. That too was a sad day.

1:34 PM  
Blogger brookLyn gaL said...

Popov? That takes me back to my high school days!

1:48 PM  
Blogger Big Daddy said...

I'm with Mmyers.

Our local grocery store had the generic aisle and everything was white with black text.

I'd wish they'd sell it still.

It's all cool and minimalistic and would compliment my kitchen perfectly.

4:35 PM  
Blogger Big Daddy said...

I found a pic of generic Beer!

4:37 PM  
Blogger Megkathleen said...

If what you say is true about the generic medicine is true I am potentially in a lot of trouble...I think to be safe I should see if I can trade in my generic birth control for the real stuff after work today.

6:07 PM  
Blogger Heavy B said...

Dude, I heart the Malt-O-Meal corporation and their crack marketing team, responsible for the blue kangaroo and his side kick l'il oatie. (Punctuation theirs)

Also, those giant bottles (3 litre, holla) of like 0.89 soda were a vital part of my undergrad experience.

7:07 PM  
Blogger blythe said...

i miss stop and shop so much. their products weren't half bad. probably because they're euro. in the meantime, tell us more about your middle school experiences with dr pepper flavored lip gloss. i think that's what blogs are really for.

3:00 PM  
Anonymous Let's said...

If you're ever in France, there are a couple of generic beers there that might interest you:


I've never actually come across the first one, but you can often find the second at a common supermarket called G20, and possibly a few others. It comes in small, squat bottles, like Kronenbourg and the other cheapest brand-name beers, and sells for something like two or three euros less than them for a twelve-pack.

Several times I was tempted to buy some, especially when I was really low on money, but somehow I never worked up the nerve.

8:18 PM  
Blogger Margarito said...

Her bags are unique. I loved that she draws her inspiration from a wide range of things.So funky that 7 up inspired her collection. Love that her Generic Viagra real form.

1:35 PM  

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