Remember The Good Old Days, when you poured out your Wakey Flakes (if there actually IS a breakfast cereal of that name, this story has nothing to do with it) and a bit of plastic crap fell out with them?
My favourites were a series of little smiling “alien” chappies that came, in a variety of colours, with “Sugar Puffs”, circa 1962.
For no particular reason, their heads filled into their feet and their hands linked also. Thus you could make them into towers, daisy chains – hell, if you ate enough Puffs, you could make a waistcoat out of them.
They were particularly appealing, because as far as I knew, they weren’t part of any promotion – they just WERE.
Well, t’other day, I opened a box of Rice Krispies and another piece of plastic crap fell out. It was licensed by Disney – to advertise some mediocre product of theirs – and had been made in China.
Now you could be forgiven for thinking that little has changed in 50 years (apart from the fact that in ’62, the plastic crap was labelled Hong-Kong) but there WAS a difference. Mr Health And Safety had been at work.
You’ll note that at the top of this piece, I said fell out WITH. In ’62, that was true. But no longer.
At some point in the Seventies, despite there being NO reports of kids coming down with Yellow Fever (which doesn’t come from the Orient anyway) or getting little plastic aliens stuck in their throats, these bits of plastic crap began appearing wrapped in cellophane packets.
And now, it appears even THIS isn’t good enough for Mr H & S. This latest offering – still wrapped in cellophane – came not from INSIDE the pack of cerial, but rather from the gap BETWEEN the pack and the outer box.
Mr H & S needs to get a LIFE.