While shopping at the supermarket today, my daughter pointed out that you could now buy chocolate-scented rubbish bags. Chocolate-scented rubbish bags! I’m afraid it’s true. They are also available in strawberry, lemon, lime and lavender. I can understand citrus-scented products, after all, we’ve had lemon-scented floor cleaner and dishwashing liquid for some time, but chocolate-scented products are a different matter. It might just be me, but there is something very wrong about the idea of having your garbage smell of confectionery.
As far as I can see, the innovation is going to have two possible follow-on effects:
1. People are going to want to eat their garbage.
2. People are going to think of garbage next time they eat chocolate.
Either effect is surely undesirable.
I can’t help but imagine the sorts of things that might have been said when the company behind this product first discussed the idea:
Executive A: ‘How can we persuade people to buy more rubbish bags?’
Executive B: ‘We need to make them more attractive!’
Executive A: ‘But they’re rubbish bags! How can we make rubbish bags more attractive?’
Executive C: ‘We could make them look nicer! Y’know pretty colours and designs!’
Executive B: ‘And we could make them smell nice!’
Executive D: ‘And we could make them taste nice!’
Executive A: ‘Whaddya mean, taste nice? We don’t want people to eat the rubbish bags!’
Executive D: ‘Mmm…sorry, maybe I did get a little carried away…’
Executive A: ‘But I do like the other ideas – a new look and a new smell. What sorts of fragrances did you have in mind?’
Executive B: ‘Well, what sorts of things do people like to smell?’
Executive C: ‘Flowers! Perfume! Roast chicken!’
Executive A: ‘Fruit! Apple pie! Freshly-cut grass!’
Executive D: ‘Fish! Beer! Chocolate!’
Executive A: ‘Fish-scented rubbish bags? What a revolting concept!’
Executive D: ‘Yes…er…maybe I was getting a little over-excited.’
Executive A: ‘But chocolate! Chocolate-scented rubbish bags. You might be on to something there…’
I manage to resist my daughter’s appeal for chocolate-scented rubbish bags, and make a mental note to add the product to the list of ‘things I will never buy’.
P.S. For your information and amusement here is the current version of this list:
2. Golf clubs
4. Homebrew Kit
5. Global Positioning System (anyone who cannot read a map should not be driving a car)
6. Frozen spinach (making a bad thing worse)
7. USB Cup Warmer
9. Reef thongs
10. Meat-shaped soy products
13. Fishing rod
14. Any power tool