Wednesday, March 28, 2007

I am the almighty consumer

Behold my opinions on your products and services!

American Laser Centers
I had my I-just-won-$300-worth-of-services-in-a-drawing-even-though-I’m-not-very-hairy consultation last night. Call me picky, but a high-end spa should be in a building with a fancy—or at the very least consumer-friendly—lobby. American Laser Centers told me over the phone they were in the 900 N. Michigan building (which they were sure to remind me was the Bloomingdale’s building) but I should use their entrance around the corner at 60 E. Delaware. Guess what? 60 E. Delaware is a fricking parking garage across a fricking alley behind the Bloomingdale’s building. Lying laser losers! The laser center offices are on the top floor of the parking garage, but to get there you have to wade through a rubber-clad lobby (for easy hosing down, I assume) past the machines where the teeming masses pay before they return to their cars, and you have to ride in what is basically a freight elevator to get there. Not the best way to make first impression. And you really have to dig to get the perky consultationist to cough up the fact that there’s no zero-sum procedure you can get on a $300 gift certificate. In fact, the minimum I’d have to pay for anything is a whopping $800—to kill about 50 stray hairs on my back. Bring on the tried-and-true boyfriend with the clippers! Total time finding the office: 15 minutes, once I realized the utilitarian parking elevators offered the only access to the high-end laser center. Total time before I abandoned my consultation: two minutes.

Minwax® Wood Finish™ Stain Marker
We spent the weekend finishing up the guest bedroom, which included taping off and painting all the baseboards and windowsills. But while we used the very same brands of tape and paint doing the very same work in the master bedroom—which turned out fabulous—when we peeled up the tape from the guest-room baseboards, we discovered to our horror that the paint had seeped under the tape both up the walls and onto the floors, which I remind you we just spent $2,000 refinishing. We can obviously retape and repaint the walls (another weekend shot in the ass) but we weren’t sure what to do about the floors … until I remembered that Minwax makes little stain-filled magic markers that have worked wonders on dinged-up furniture in my not-so-distant past. So after last night’s aborted adventure in laser hair removal, the boyfriend picked me up and we headed to Home Depot to buy this week’s collection of necessities: a stain pen, a 1/4” ceramic-tile drill bit for installing a curved shower rod, and custom-cut blinds for both freshly painted bedrooms so we can finally start walking around naked again. And the moment we got home—before we were even out of our coats—I was on my hands and knees, scribbling wood stain onto paint ooze and watching it magically look as though nothing had happened. Minwax saved my floors and my marriage!

The boyfriend’s ex bought us a his-and-his Sonicare electric toothbrush kit as a housewarming gift, a gesture that could be subject to a wide range of interpretations but we choose to believe it was meant in a here’s-to-a-lifetime-of-healthy-gums kind of way. My last three dentists have implored me to get a Sonicare, but I always balked at their freakishly high price. And now that I have one and use it religiously and spend my days in a reverie of pearly smooth teeth and cherub-pink gums, I vow that from this day forward I will always date men with wealthy ex-boyfriends travel the world preaching the miracle of sonic tooth polishing. Not only does Sonicare give you a two-minute gum massage (which is strangely invigorating) but it keeps your teeth in such a state of smooth shininess that you wonder how non-Sonicare users ever get kissed. I mean seriously: non-Sonicared teeth are like angora sweaters after a windy day at the beach. Sonicared teeth are like dry-erase boards fresh out of the box: You can’t help but run your tongue over them all day. Get a Sonicare and get a little tongue!™*

*Proposed product tagline. Subject to copyright approval. All rights reserved.

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