How many times has this happened to you? December 1, 2010 9:32 PM   Subscribe

Hello there. Sorry if this is inappropriate, but I'm looking for a post from some months ago which was a mash-up of a bunch of the "How many times has this happened to you?" moments from infomercials. People who can't tie their shoes, can't open jars, can't cut an onion, and like that. Can someone remember?
posted by Trochanter to MetaFilter-Related at 9:32 PM (35 comments total) 16 users marked this as a favorite

Here you go!
posted by biochemist at 9:35 PM on December 1, 2010


Thanks, it's close, but this was actual bits from actual popeil type ads or infomercials. As Seen On TV!
posted by Trochanter at 9:39 PM on December 1, 2010


I don't know if it's ever graced the pages of Metafilter, but here's your video.
posted by John Cohen at 9:39 PM on December 1, 2010 [3 favorites]


We got that B roll?
posted by longsleeves at 9:45 PM on December 1, 2010 [3 favorites]


That one's really close. So close it might be it. But I think I remember this one being more about the complete ineptitude of the poor people. That one's great though, and I will send it to the person I wanted to send the other one to.

Thanks for your help!
posted by Trochanter at 9:45 PM on December 1, 2010


Another one similar to John Cohen's, but with a Beatles soundtrack.
posted by danb at 9:47 PM on December 1, 2010 [8 favorites]


Another one similar to John Cohen's , but with a Beatles soundtrack.

Wow, that looks hilarious based on the first few seconds, but I had to turn it off to prevent it from forever tainting that song for me.
posted by John Cohen at 9:48 PM on December 1, 2010


The Beatles soundtrack one is it. Thanks to every one.
posted by Trochanter at 9:50 PM on December 1, 2010


The other links are good, as well.
posted by Trochanter at 9:51 PM on December 1, 2010


I love the one danb linked. At 0:36, someone tries to open an egg into a pan, but misses the center of the pan by a good eight inches, dumping it into the bottom of their gas stove. What product could possibly help you if you can't arrange simple objects in space while fire is involved?
posted by 0xFCAF at 2:40 AM on December 2, 2010 [10 favorites]


I think it sucks that you thought you had to preface your post with an apology.
posted by crunchland at 5:30 AM on December 2, 2010


Obligatory BennyHillified version of danb's link above.
posted by hangashore at 5:31 AM on December 2, 2010 [2 favorites]


Thank you for this - it indirectly led me to the glory that is the Hawaii Chair.
posted by mippy at 6:39 AM on December 2, 2010


What product could possibly help you if you can't arrange simple objects in space while fire is involved?

That sounds like the start of one of those ads.
posted by Trochanter at 6:42 AM on December 2, 2010


The one John Cohen linked to is the one I think of as definitive; it was mentioned once on mefi in a comment by Mikey-san, in response to a post about the one danb linked to.

Everything is Terrible is a wonderful thing. It's probably been linked too much on the front page already as a result, but I'm awfully glad it exists.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:13 AM on December 2, 2010


At work, we have two people whose job it is to watch all the infomercials ever broadcast on UK TV. I eagerly awaited the arrival of the Slap Chop and the Sham Wow for product testing.
posted by mippy at 7:34 AM on December 2, 2010


e. What product could possibly help you if you can't arrange simple objects in space while fire is involved?

That would be the EZ CRACKER.

I know this cause once, as is my want, I was up late working with the TV on and that commerical came on and said "And we've all done this..." and I just snapped and shouted NO! NO ONE HAS EVER DONE THAT IN THE HISTORY OF MAN! And woke the whole house up.
posted by The Whelk at 7:47 AM on December 2, 2010 [8 favorites]


I kind of feel bad for informercial fodder inventions. Because they're perfectly nice little inventions in many cases—someone, somewhere, surely finds cracking eggs annoying, maybe they have limited manual dexterity but want to cook eggy breakfast for themselves, and the EZ Cracker might be just the thing for them, etc—but the requirements of the genre conventions force them into a loathesome overselling of the whole thing.

Like, if there was a way to put on a five second commercial that was just one shot of the EZ Cracker cracking an egg and the words "hey, this is a thing that exists that you can buy if you want it", bam! No condescending re-enactments, no peppy background music, just, hey: it's a thing. It does a thing. You can buy it. Tiny little demonstrative ads. Less Popeil, more Wario Ware.

But genre conventions are what they are, and so it's always this "How easy is it?" "So!" song and dance that'd make the internal combustion engine look like a cheap gimmick.

What the infomercial market needs is a Dogme 95 movement.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:58 AM on December 2, 2010 [3 favorites]


I think it sucks that you thought you had to preface your post with an apology.

That was because I was worried I'd missed something really obvious when I was searching for it myself.

You've tried googling...

Pours coffee on self.

You've tried binging...

Hurts back pulling up pants.

posted by Trochanter at 7:59 AM on December 2, 2010 [8 favorites]


You've tried Alta Vista...

*man falls off cliff face*

You've tried Wolfram Alpha...

*woman scratches out half-complete algebraic formula in frustration

You've even tried Yahoo! Answers...

*man at primate enclosure being pelted by feces*

posted by cortex (staff) at 8:00 AM on December 2, 2010 [16 favorites]


Or maybe we've instilled enough of a culture of fear and ridicule that people are afraid to post stuff here. "Smug explanation of what's wrong with your questions," indeed.

Yay us.
posted by crunchland at 9:26 AM on December 2, 2010 [1 favorite]


>You've tried binging...

Hurts back pulling up pants.


Binging followed by hurting your back pulling up your pants? Sounds like my dad on Thanksgiving.
posted by xbonesgt at 10:09 AM on December 2, 2010


For the record, that lady was trying to cut a tomato with a regular knife. You need a serrated knife for that!
posted by radioamy at 10:38 AM on December 2, 2010


help! i keep putting my snuggie on backwards so instead of a smock I have a bathrobe and the thing is then i can't go to the bathroom with my snuggie on and i am still cold when I lay on the couch to watch leno.
posted by not_on_display at 11:44 AM on December 2, 2010 [2 favorites]


I think it may already have been made clear, but no one has specifically said so; yes, MetaTalk is the place to ask where/how to find an old MeFi post or AskMe question, Trochanter.
posted by deborah at 1:14 PM on December 2, 2010


I really wish that the products being hawked in the clips in that compilation were somehow mentioned, because I have some of those same problems :(

Especially the part at :56 where the girl's shirt keeps coming open, and that's a difficult problem to google for.
posted by Ashley801 at 2:27 PM on December 2, 2010


Just for you, Ashley801 (warning: annoying in so many ways)! Or for the Twilight fan on your Christmas shopping list!
posted by The corpse in the library at 5:21 PM on December 2, 2010 [3 favorites]


I just watched the EZ CRACKER1 commercial. They crack that bastard egg open a total of 20 times in less than 2 minutes. It's sort of mesmerizing.

[1] NOT RACIST
posted by 0xFCAF at 10:49 PM on December 2, 2010


Good god that Camisecret web page is annoying. The design, the pop-up on close dialogs (2 of them!), the insinuation that showing cleavage is automatically offensive. Everything. Argh!

(NB, If the problem you're having is in fact your tops occasionally gaping and revealing a "sideways" view that you'd rather not offer Ashley801, then I'm told that the fashionista answer is toupée tape to hold the material down in the right places.)
posted by pharm at 3:17 AM on December 3, 2010


12/3/10: note to self: must corner market in toupee tape
posted by not_on_display at 11:02 AM on December 3, 2010


Probably not appropriate, but I laughed my fool head off.
posted by sneebler at 3:13 PM on December 3, 2010


The best part about the canonical video is the "Give Up" chorus near the end.
posted by ErikaB at 3:33 PM on December 3, 2010


For the record, that lady was trying to cut a tomato with a regular knife. You need a serrated knife for that!

Is this a troll? Because this is one of the most wrongly wrong things ever said on the internet.

You don't need a serrated knife for anything, except for cutting bread and aluminum cans.
posted by Dr Dracator at 2:35 AM on December 4, 2010 [1 favorite]


Well, a cheap/dull serrated knife will go through a tomato a hell of a lot more easily than a cheap/dull non-serrated knife. Speaking from experience as the owner of decidedly cheap, relatively dull knives. Something rough to break the skin makes the difference between gliding effortlessly into that little globe and trying to convince a straight, non-laser edge to just pierce it magically. All squishing the tomato down and getting nowhere.

I realize the correct culinary answer here is probably "by better knives or sharpen your cheap ones", but I don't spend all that much time around tomatoes.
posted by cortex (staff) at 8:14 AM on December 4, 2010


It is an agreement that serves you and the tomatoes well.
posted by The Whelk at 9:06 AM on December 4, 2010


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