In Search of a Totally Organic Experience

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The other day I washed my hair with herbal shampoo and nothing happened. No scantily clad men jumped out of nowhere to sing and dance and wash my hair. No screams and yells of pleasure as I lathered under the shower. Not even a tingle from the top of my head. To tell you the truth, I was a little disappointed. This isn’t at all to reflect negatively on Mr. Ng, but to be perfectly honest, at my age, I can use a thrill or two. I’m over forty, there’s a six-year-old in the house going through a whiny phase, and the New Year promises to be about as exciting as the old year.


At first, I thought I might not be doing it right so I consulted the directions on the back of the bottle. Lather. Rinse. It all seemed easy enough. Wait a minute … what’s this? Repeat. Ah ha! This must be where I went wrong—I forgot to repeat. The next time I showered, I followed the instructions word for word. I lathered and I lathered well. In fact, I built up quite an organic froth on the top of my head. I rinsed and I believe I did a pretty good job of it. There was no soap left in my hair when I was finished. And I repeated. Since I forgot this crucial step the first time and didn’t have the intended results, I was positive the key to a totally organic experience was in the repeat. But alas, it was not to be. My head felt clean enough, but I certainly wasn’t feeling the same way as the women in the commercial.


Perhaps the problem wasn’t me after all. Perhaps I had a defective batch. Maybe one of the key components was missing. I consulted the back of the bottle for insight. Did they forget to add the Yellow number 10? Could it be that there wasn’t enough Cocamidopropyl Betaine in the mixture? What if there was too much Guar Hydroxypropyl-Trmonium Chloride? I decided I should really bring this to someone’s attention. After all, if they’re pitching pleasurable results for this product, and my results were, at best, just ok, they should be informed. Again, I consulted the back of the shampoo bottle.


Under the heading “Questions?” was an 800 number provided for my service. I decided to give it a whirl.


“Good afternoon, Your Herbal Shampoo Company, Linda speaking, may I help you?”


“Yes, thank you Linda, you certainly may. I used your shampoo twice in the past couple of days and nothing happened.” Hopefully, Linda was experienced in these matters.


“Nothing, ma’am? Your hair isn’t clean?” Linda sounded quite perplexed.


“It’s very clean, thanks, and has quite a nice shine to it, too, but that’s it. I didn’t enjoy the shampoo in the same way as the women in the commercial.”


“Ma’am?”


“I didn’t have a total organic experience.”


“Are you serious?” All of a sudden, Linda didn’t sound so cheerful.


“I’m calling you to discuss this, what do you think?”


“Ma’am, it’s Christmas Eve, surely you have something better to do?”


“Let me think. My son is napping, my husband is shopping, the baking is done, the presents are wrapped, and the laundry is washed. Nope, I have some time to kill. Plus, the mere fact that I’m talking to you, on a shampoo hotline of all things regarding an absence of a thrill from your product might be indication that my life might be lacking a little something.”


“Apparently. Please hold.”


After listening to about ten minutes of pleasant holiday music, I decided that Linda wasn’t coming back. I entertained visions of her and the rest of the telephone operators enjoying a little holiday cheer as those of us with shampoo emergencies waited patiently for them to remember our existence. Reluctantly, I hung up. Dreams of about a dozen men massaging my hair as I cried out in pleasure were wiped from my mind. Perhaps I needed to find a hobby instead.


I may have decided to give up on my organic experience, but my quest for truth in advertising continues. A couple of nights ago, I had just finished washing my hair and was about to condition. A new bottle of conditioner sat on the shelf. It smelled heavenly, Fresh Mountain Strawberry. Hmmm … mountain strawberries?


“Hello, Your Popular Shampoo Company, how may I help you?”


“About your Fresh Mountain Strawberry conditioner, can you tell me what mountain the strawberries come from? Are they hand picked?”

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