THIS One Should Have Been Freshly Pressed – FiftyFourandAHalf

Have you ever sent a post out into the blogosphere, absolutely convinced it was going to be Freshly Pressed?  And then it wasn’t?

You’re not alone.

I’ve asked some fantastic bloggers to select the post that had them muttering,”THIS One Should Have Been Freshly Pressed.”  I’ll present a new one each week.

I’ve got a separate page set up so you can see all the great submissions once they’ve run, but first…


Today’s offering is from Elyse @ FiftyFourandAHalf.  Her about Me page says “At fifty-four-and-a-half, my funny bone holds me up more completely than all the other bones in my body.  I depend on it to get through the 21st Century.”

Elyse is funny, true, but so much more.  She’s also a passionate advocate for causes in which she believes.  Be sure to check out her blog after you read:


Corrective Packaging

Shampoo bottlesThe problem became clear to me when I was naked, wet and in someone else’s shower.  Too late, I realized that I had forgotten my shampoo and conditioner upstairs in the guest room.

As problems go, this one wasn’t huge.  There was an assortment of products right there on the back of the tub.  At least eight bottles of stuff.  But I didn’t know what was in any of them because I have presbyopia.  Because I’m old.  Ish.

Presbyopia.  Sounds like a terminal disease or a religious sect, doesn’t it?  It’s neither.  It means my eyes are aging along with the rest of my generation.  Mostly, I see fine with my glasses.  But mornings are impossible:  first, I hobble out of bed, my joints cracking like pinecones in a fire. Once I get into the shower, I can’t tell the difference between shampoo, conditioner and body wash.  I make mistakes.

And it’s not just in-shower products.  And it’s not just in the morning.

I can’t tell my day from my night creams, so presbyopia may actually endanger my life.  The day cream has SPF to keep me from contracting skin cancer, which is vital to me as an Irish-American still awaiting my first tan.  The night cream has something in it to make me look years younger.  I’ve been using it since 1987, and if it worked as advertised I should just now be developing acne.

I don’t want to get them confused.  But I do.

Women with sagging butts still want what hasn’t relocated to look nice, you know.  In fact, it becomes increasingly more important as other body parts fail.  And we want to know that we are using the right stuff in the right order.  We need the “turn-around” cream first and then the regular moisturizer.  In that order!  We can no longer afford to do it the other way around by accident.  And we tend to shampoo first and then condition.

Products designed to be used by wet naked people who aren’t wearing their glasses in the shower should have HUGE printing.  They do not.  It is completely unfair.

No.  It’s worse; it’s discrimination.  Ageism.  Chauvinism.  Some “ism” or other.  This packaging bigotry prevents aging folks from making intelligent choices, minimizes their independence, and undermines their confidence.  Sometimes, it also makes their hair sticky.

It’s “Boomerism.”  Boomerism is “the practice of ensuring through packaging that Baby Boomers, who never were as great a generation as their parents because there were no Nazis for US to fight, will feel inept while grooming.”  Boomerism.  You heard it here first.

I blame the packaging industry for my distress.  I should sue.  Or go into assisted living.

Twenty-somethings – the folks who obviously design these labels – they don’t have presbyopia.  They can’t even spell it.  We aging boomers still have some cash to spend (at least until they take away our Social Security).  We need assistance:


The first company that trades on this need will reap HUGE REWARDS.

Imagine the advertising campaign, filmed in a low grade blur:  An attractive 50-something Diane Keeton-type takes off her glasses, steps into the shower, and squints at the 10 bottles on the back of the tub.  She chooses a bottle.  The camera shot changes to one of just the shower curtain.

“This doesn’t seem right,” she says, after applying something to her hair.  Her hand reaches out for her glasses and they disappear back inside.  We hear:

“Oh No!!”

She can now see that she’s just massaged Nair Hair Remover into her scalp.  The camera moves to a lineup of legibly labeled products on her sink, next to her glasses.

Now, this is my idea, my design.  So any of you advertising folks need to know that I expect a percentage of the excess profits from products that cannot be accused of Boomerism.  And I know just what I’ll do with my share of the proceeds.

I’m getting Lasik eye surgery so that I can read my stupid alarm clock.

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About pegoleg

R-A-M-B-L-I-N-G-S, Ram...Blin!
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85 Responses to THIS One Should Have Been Freshly Pressed – FiftyFourandAHalf

  1. Nice to know that other people start their days with joints cracking and eyes squinting. Sigh.

  2. Elyse says:

    Thanks for another shot at glory, Peg! You are a bloggin’ buddy beyond all buddyhood!

    • pegoleg says:

      Thanks for classing up the joint, Elyse!

      • Elyse says:

        It occurred to me, that you should call this feature “Freshly Pegged” and do a badge. I for one would wear it proudly.

        Of course I couldn’t ever figure out how to make one, so …

        • pegoleg says:

          That’s another great idea! When I crafted my obituary I foretold that WP was going to rename the honor Peggly Pressed. I’ll get my tech guys right on it.

        • Elyse says:

          And WP should listen, but not wait until you’re dead. Because certain things just won’t be as much fun then. At least not for the remaining few!

  3. k8edid says:

    I am at my son’s house and terrified of the shower…there are at least 20 bottles of stuff everywhere.

    I love this post and don’t know how I missed it the first time. Nicely done (and your hair looks fabulous.)

    • Elyse says:

      It’s a dangerous time, Katy. Be careful. May I suggest a special prescription diving mask?

      The post is very old, so almost nobody saw it, because I had hardly any blogging buddies when it came out.

  4. Yes, I agree…this should have been Freshly Pressed! Very funny indeed!

  5. Brilliant idea with the Nair. This one definitely shoulda been FP. Maybe you should retitle it, “Hey Doc! Corrective Packaging!”

    My eyesight is failing at such a rapid pace this year, it’s really scary. I can’t even take vitamins or medicine anymore as I can’t read the microscopic print on the bottle even WITH my glasses! I have to ask Jim to read it and he’s the same age as me. Why aren’t his eyes bad like mine? It’s just not fair.

    • Elyse says:

      Oh dear, Darla. You’re suffering from Boomerism and you’re not even a boomer! Perhaps it’s GenX-ism, although I leave you to Trademark that one.

      My husband recently made me buy one of those old hag pill cases with the 4,329 different compartments so that I can keep my meds/vits/supplements straight. Oy. I am ready to be reincarnated as something/someone with good eyesight. An osprey, perhaps. They make me feel like Maine!

  6. mistyslaws says:

    Brilliant post. Indeed, the WordPress gods missed out on this gem for sure.

    I am near sighted, so I can actually still read the small print in the shower. Also, I make sure I get different brightly colored bottles so when I am still zombiefied in the AM, I don’t have to use too much brain power to figure out that THIS goes on first and THAT goes on next. Then again, there have been conditioner FIRST instances where my brain synapses just are not firing, but that’s a whole other issue not having to do with vision, so obviously I digress.

    • Elyse says:

      Thanks, Misty. And it is hard being a woman with hair in the shower, good eyesight or poor. Thirty years ago I showed up at my high class DC office with one half of my hair looking greasy. I was late and hadn’t rinsed all the conditioner out! Now, frankly, I do 2-in-1 to avoid as many shower mishaps as possible.

  7. mercyn620 says:

    Great post. I solve the dilemma by figuring out what to use before stepping into the shower. With glasses on, I choose what to use and place the bottles in a corner I can reach. Of course, then I forget which is shampoo and which conditioner. But at least I don’t use the Nair!

    • Elyse says:

      Thanks, Mercy. I don’t have a problem when I’m home, but when I am elsewhere, well, it ain’t pretty.

      But I swear I care less and less as I age. Now I’m simply grateful if I don’t use the Nair. Because time and my thyroid condition are taking care of that just fine, thank you very much!

  8. ntexas99 says:

    I almost enjoyed reading this, except that the whole time I was squinting, because my “good” glasses are in my purse, and not on my nose … my purse is in the kitchen, not next to my desk, and we all know that traversing from bedroom to kitchen without named “good” glasses on nose is a dangerous and ill-advised activity first thing in the morning, especially when there are sleeping dogs scattered like speed bumps along the way. Even though my eyes were squinty, and I was hovering too close to the screen, I still managed to smile at your Boomerism. Fun post, Elyse!

    • Elyse says:

      Thank you so much, 99! And please, don’t ever endanger yourself for one of my blog posts. For one of Peg’s, well, that’s a different story. But not for mine!

      I can’t figure out why the term “Boomerism” hasn’t caught on. Especially now that Congress wants to cut all our programs. Another bit of discrimination, I’d say.

  9. mo says:

    This cracked me up. I remember once about 45 years ago, my dear Grandmother put toothpaste in her hair, she thought it was the tube of Brylcreem. Poor thing, we never let her live it down.

    • Elyse says:

      Oh, poor Granny! I think, though, that I would have been making fun of her for using Brylcreem anyway. The toothpaste would simply have been a bonus.

  10. Go Jules Go says:

    Ha! Fantastic post, Elyse! (This feature is SO GREAT, Peggles…have I mentioned that?! Ha. That’s funny because I have. So many times. Should I put it in larger font?)

    The Nair commercial idea is GENIUS! BTW, I actually DID get Lasik eye sugery so I could read my alarm clock. Also scuba dive without prescription goggles. That’s good motivation, too, right? (I went scuba diving once.)

    • Elyse says:

      Jules, you’re right — being Freshly Pegged, as I have officially dubbed it, is even better than being Freshly Pressed because you get comments and likes from the really important folks in the ‘sphere.

      As to Lasik, I’m not ready. I solve the Nair problem with keeping my legs nice and furry. I solve the alarm clock problem by throwing it across the room. I solve the scuba diving problem by drowning.

      Whatever the problem, where there’s a will there’s a way, don’t cha think?

  11. Another great post, Elyse! As I am up for an eye exam in a few days, I know it’s going to be miserable, as I am forced to buy different glasses and contacts for every activity. I’m sure glasses with mini-wipers for shower use will be next on the agenda.

  12. You got this right, Peg–why wasn’t this Freshly Pressed?

    And you got this right, Elyse–I’m very tired of squinting. It’s giving me wrinkles (well, more wrinkles) and the false impression that doing do will help me see that bloody small print more clearly. It’s cruel and if they don’t start making products with larger print, the least they could do is provide a handy magnifying glass that won’t fog, chip, or break in the shower. If they can make a man’s hooter stand at attention for over 4 hours, they should be able to do that! ;)

  13. Honestly, I would love to know who makes the executive decision to select what is FP’D, because I’ve seen some…you know…not so worthy recipients.
    I am crying with laughter of course since, just this morning SOMEONE in this house put 2 white bottles next to each other in the shower and I had to get out, get my glasses and get back in just to wash my hair with shampoo and not conditioner.

    • Elyse says:

      It’s happened to me twice. The first time it wasn’t a particularly good post. The second time I was fairly proud of it. Was it my best? Hell no! Maybe they should ask us to notify them when we’ve done something we are particularly proud of. Maybe I should suggest it to them. Maybe I should just shut up.

      The WP thing that really bugs me is the posts they put on when you hit “Like” or “Follow.” I don’t even know what they list for mine (do you?) but given the fact that I get an occasional polite “Like” from someone for a crap post, and the posts I see listed for folks I know well, I’m pretty sure they aren’t showing us in our best light.


      Sorry about your hair and eyes. I actually buy the 2-in-1 now to avoid mistakes.

  14. Audrey says:

    Great post! The FP gods really missed this one…
    I’m 25 and already have trouble with mixing up my shampoo and conditioner. Right now I blame it on not being a morning person but at the rate I’m going, the future is not bright.
    All that to say, if you need investors in this boomerism line of large font products, count me in!

    • Elyse says:

      Audrey, I take checks in any amount, any old time.

      Perhaps we need not just large fonts but talking shampoo bottles. Never mind — automated anything makes me want to hurl. Not such a good thing when one is trying to get clean.

      Thanks for stopping by.

  15. Haha! You’re totally right about the large print! that’s a brilliant idea! Sadly, at 35, my joints have been cracking for two decades, and my eyes failed when I was 8. But I manage by making out shapes and scents. I am terrified of the next four decades.

    • Elyse says:

      Oh, Single, your poor joints. And your eyes. Whoever said the body is a temple was an idiot. Mine is more like a ruin.

      As long as you can laugh during the next 40 years, you’ll be fine. Ish.

      I just checked out your blog — mid comment, no less. ADHD? Perhaps. Squirrel.

  16. aFrankAngle says:

    Pure Elyse style … thus possibly on the way to FP-dom. As for that commercial, a 67-year-old Diane Keaton would be fine because most people don’t realize her age. Thanks for the chuckles at the expense of reality.

    • Elyse says:

      This one qualifies as “Vintage Elyse” as it is one of my very first posts. An instructive one, too, because I showed drafts to two different people who both said, ummmm, that’s not funny. It was a good writing lesson that just because I think in my mind that something is funny doesn’t mean it translates.

      And Diane Keaton will always look fine, won’t she. Amazing woman.

      But this won’t be Fresh Pressed — I am very proud that it has been Freshly Pegged!

      • aFrankAngle says:

        Freshly Pegged sounds like a great honor … so Congrats!

        Meanwhile, what is funny in our minds doesn’t always work … especially for those of us that have a quirky sense of honor – the one that many have a hard time understanding until they get to know you.

  17. Good choice! Definitely Freshly Pressed material. You really have to wonder about those people sometimes.
    I think we should all just keep a magnify glass hanging from a rope in the shower. Kind of like a soap on a rope. What do you think?

  18. El Guapo says:

    Boy, if I had a dollar for every time I was naked and wet in someone else’s shower, I’d probably have bail money for the first incident by now.
    Congrats on being Freshly Peggged!

    • El Guapo says:

      Oh, and for freshly Pegging Elyse, you, Peg, have exquisite taste!

    • Elyse says:

      The thing is Guap, when we’re there naked and wet in someone else’s shower having fun most of us can still see well enough without glasses. It’s when we get old that it becomes a problem for many, many reasons. Imagine grabbing the pope on a rope instead of — oh never mind.

  19. Women sure do have it tough. I’ve got a bar of soap and a washcloth. No hair to deal with and wrinkles are not avoided – they give us guys character!

    Of course I kid, my anti-aging cream is right there next to my cuticle lotion.

    You were right, this should have been Freshly Pressed, but being Freshly Pegged is a better prize with a greater percentage of high brow readers.

  20. amelie88 says:

    Hahahaha Nair! Though by the smell alone I think most women would know to avoid the bottle. You don’t need small print to tell you that!

    • Elyse says:

      I guess the fact that I don’t know that gives me away, huh? I used it once in 1977 the morning before I went to the beach. OUCH!

  21. benzeknees says:

    Congrats on being Freshly Pegged Elyse! Since you have already been FP’d twice while a lot of us are still waiting for our first FP, this is a new experience for you! This was a great post. I will never have this problem since as I age my bi-focal eyes have become more pronounced. I may have to get the bottle right to the tip of my nose, but I can still read it. Great choice for a Freshly Pegged, Peg!

    • Elyse says:

      Benze, I somehow missed this comment. Thanks for your kind words. Being Freshly Pegged is so much better than being Freshly Pressed, IMHO. You see it is the quality of the people and the comments they make that makes all the difference. Really.

      And I have confidence in you, Benze. May you achieve both distinctions.soon.

  22. This one indeed should have been FP! How well I relate to this, just yesterday I got in my own shower and washed my hair with Conditioner, realizing I had made the wrong purchase at the store. Now I had to use soap to wash my hair and re-Condition it due to the harshness of the body soap.

    Ageism indeed.

    • Elyse says:

      Thanks Val. We all have our moments with these products, but the manufacturers don’t make it easy for us, do they.

      But the “stuff” had it’s revenge today — my husband keeps his stuff on one of those little shelves that hang over the shower head. Today his shampoo attacked me. Seriously! And it did it while my back was turned.

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  24. winsomebella says:

    That was a good one and by God! it should have been freshly pressed :-)

  25. The Cutter says:

    I had LASIK and I recommend it. One warning: Don’t do it just for the X-ray vision. To use the X-ray vision that comes as a result of the surgery requires such concentration and focus that it leaves you with a blinding headache. I’d only use it now in case of dire emergency.

  26. Luckily I’ve only got one bar of soap and one bottle of shampoo to worry about.
    Otherwise I’d get confused.
    Even if / when I can see them properly. :)

  27. Sandy Sue says:

    Loved this. Because it’s so sadly me.

    • Elyse says:

      It is hard to see oneself in a post, isn’t it Sandy Sue? But you know, I think these days that the only time I like the fact that I can no longer see is when I look in the mirror. Sigh.

  28. Great post! But you know I knew that way back when in your early blogging career.
    Yep this happens just as you described it. I’m another one of those who can’t read the shampoo from the conditioner while I’m in the shower–jump out to find one of those pair of glasses I have sprinkled all over the house and each car and purse.
    And still, when I can’t find those, I have to ask grandson “is that 1/2 or 1/4?” when I’m baking.

    • Elyse says:

      You are absolutely one of my very first blogging buddies. I don’t even know how we found each other, but I’m so glad we did.

      Isn’t it frustrating — the fact that we can’t read anything anymore? And they are making the print smaller and smaller … I don’t know how much they will try to put onto the head of a pin, but I fear it’s coming and we’ll have to read it!

  29. susielindau says:

    Hilarious! I have mixed things up before and one time my sharp eyed son pointed out that the Benedryll cream looked just like toothpaste!

  30. How funny – and how true (I am so grateful the marketing people made the shampoo top clear – and the conditioner top brightly colored…the conditioner is the one you can see even with all the soap and water in bleary eyes)
    Congrats Elyse! Freshly Pegged is the real thing!

  31. I am so surprised that there’s not a line of Boomer-inspired products. It HAS to be coming and — Elyse — you should be director of the beauty products division.

    • Elyse says:

      Why thanks, Hippie. I can’t believe there isn’t a whole host of stuff in easy to open bottles with clear labels. I mean, we Boomers still have some money. At least until they take away our entitlements.

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  35. lisakunk says:

    I think you are my clone. When I read what you write it sounds so much like me it’s eerie. Hmmm

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