Friday, March 11, 2011

Stupid Product: The Slobstopper

As I write today's Stupid Product post, I'm happily wearing a cream colored shirt I found at a local thrift store for just a couple of bucks. I only buy light colored shirts at thrift stores, because I have a propensity toward spills, and if I'm going to ruin a shirt, I feel better if it didn't cost me $30.

My ex-husband used to say he was going to buy me a bib, and for good reason. In ten years of marriage, he never made good on that threat, probably because he knew I'd never wear it anyway. I may be prone to food related accidents, but I will never, ever wear a bib. My reasons boil down to simple logic.

Premise: Bibs look stupid on anyone who is not a baby.
Premise: I am not a baby.
Conclusion: I will look stupid if I wear a bib.

I don't like looking stupid, so there you go.  I buy my shirts at thrift store and buy my pre-treater by the gallon at wholesale clubs, instead. I think most people are with me here. Unfortunately, that didn't stop the makers of the Slobstopper from creating this.

You know what I love about these commercials? The "Has this ever happened to you?" disasters and calamities. I'm sure there is someone on the face of this earth who has dumped an entire cup of coffee on his shirt in this way. I'm just not sure it happens very often...certainly not often enough for the commercial announcer to ask in such a conspiratorial tone.  Just once, I'd like one of these commercials to show something annoying but fairly normal happening.  A bit of chili dog sauce on the collar...maybe a drop of mustard on a tie.

Also, can someone tell me what an "unplanned accident" is?  Does this imply that there are planned accidents?  If you plan an accident, do you need a Slobstopper, or is it only supposed to be used for those accidents that occur without warning or foresight and are, uh, accidental?

And then there's the requisite "hot chick" who walks by as our protagonist douses himself with coffee.  She shakes her head in disdain at this sad sack with a drinking problem, but when he drapes himself in a big, blue bib, she smiles like she's just found Prince Charming.  This is not real life, Slobstopper.  In real life, if a girl saw a grown man completely incapable of drinking an ordinary cup of coffee without a man-tarp, she'd question the authorities that allowed him a driver's license.

A quick check of the Slobstopper website tells me this adult bib sells for about $15, with another $6 tacked on for shipping. That's $21 so you can look stupid in the comfort of your own car.  Considering all the hot chicks you won't have to take out to dinner, I guess you can say it pays for itself.

The website purports to have a blog attached to it, but there's not much to find there.  There's a little one line post excitedly saying the product might make it onto the Ellen show.  Considering Ellen gives these types of products the same treatment I do, it's safe to say these people have never watched her show.  I guess no publicity is bad publicity?

There's a testimonial page set up.  It's completely empty, but it's there.  I suspect no one has submitted a testimonial because infants and toddlers can't read or write, and adults using this product probably don't want to be identified.  Keep trying, though, Slobstopper.  Maybe you should get that guy with the coffee to write one.  It really worked for him!