I have been known to declare advertising as genius, which disgusts a friend of mine. I think his reasoning is that I can't fathom you being one of those damn capitalist pigs who loves marketing. But perhaps it's misleading for me to say genius because I don't mean it with positive the connotation it usually has. I mean genius in its most diabolical and manipulative form. "Hey, Courtney, this isn't Illuminations. What gives?" Well, we're going to talk about cereal- "What is this, Currently Eating?" Bruh. Stay with me. I'm making a genre stew here. Besides, I didn't finish. We're going to talk about cereal boxes.
As an ex-dumb-teenage-anarchopunk on the DIY-everything mindset, my more ~mature~ self recognizes that isn't evil; it is, in fact, necessary. But I do find it very important to be an informed consumer. This is probably why I'm so often fixated on the format and nuances of supermarkets.
I love going into supermarkets as a faux cultural anthropologist. I especially love the cereal aisle. Next time you head into get groceries, do me a favor and take a stroll in this magical land of subversive technique. Let's start with the children.
Every cereal mascot adorning the box of a kid's breakfast will have downcast eyes. Why, you ask? These cartoon fellas are guaranteed to make eye contact with anyone, say, 4'9". That is, children will smile right back at the crazed white rabbit smiling down at them and as simply as that, brand loyalty is established.
But kids are impressionable, and we adults are smarter than them, right? Next time, take inventory of what's at your eye level in the cereal aisle, because I can assure you it won't be the $1.50 knock-off Frosted Flaki-os. It'll be that good shit; I'm talking Cheerios' latest variation, Mini Wheats of every flavor, Trix with those downcast eyes. Lining the top and bottom rows will be the knock-offs and cheaper stuff. But a word to the wide: There is a VERY small difference (if any) between knock-off and name brand cereals.
Also, a parting fun fact: Studies show you're likely to stick with the brands that got you as a tot. Spooky,eh?