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how am i still alive?

not too long ago i was faced with trying to process/re-acquanit myself with all of the food in my pantry.  this happens every few years or so and is often driven by the discovery of some pretty old expiration dates by myself or even worse, a friend.i can ramble on about the reasons behind how this happens (e.g., never home, live alone, do not cook often) but upon bringing up this issue on Facebook i learned that i am not alone.

many many of us ignore expiration dates and we are all still alive!  this was thrilling news – but maybe a bit unsettling for those of you who i cook for if you are not of this mindset.

recently, a friend’s dad shared an article about the creation of a gelatin label that could help limit waste by more accurately determining when the food has actually spoiled/gone bad.  here are some highlights from Adele Peters’ article:

“The next time you start to toss an “expired” carton of milk, consider this: Dates on packages don’t actually have anything to do with food safety or FDA regulations. Instead, the dates are a somewhat arbitrary indication of when a manufacturer thinks food might be freshest, and most food will likely be fine for days or weeks afterward.


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is nothing sacred?

have you found yourself on a plane while having a super exhausting week and the flight attendant brings you your diet coke with just a little ice and you put down your tray to set your drink down and it is COVERED in an advertisement?  sometimes you just need a little peace.

my frustration with this might seem a little over the top but the extreme and creative lengths that companies are willing to go to in order to get their message in front of us sometimes can feel like an assault to the senses.

a last summer I noticed this gem in o’hare on the escalator heading up to concourse C.


yes, it is fair game like the giant stickers on the ground, but I feel like somethings should just be sacred. i dread the day i encounter toilet paper containing an advertising message or having the automatic paper towel, soap, and water dispensers talk to me. the technology is very much there now we just have to pray that these sorts of limits are respected….

while certainly there are some not so bueno product placements like what is listed above or when you are watching one of your favorite tv shows and they pause in a dramatic moment to acknowledge and appreciate the specific features of the car they are driving or how much they love the crunch of particular snack, BUT some just fit or are more believable because they are so well integrated.  some examples include…..

– james bond and his aston martin (but not his shift to the heineken in my humble option…)

– reese’s pieces in E.T. (brilliant!)

– junior mints in seinfeld (gotta love some kramer…)

what makes some work and others feel less successful?  seamless integration and being audience appropriate.