Monday, January 15, 2007

Why these things pop into my head at odd moments, I'll never know

This morning I was going about my business, doing my laundry, relaxing on a Bad Weather Day (the North Ruralville School District doesn't celebrate MLK Day, so God intervened with freezing rain and made sure we all got the day off anyway), when suddenly I remembered Freshen-Up Gum from the late 1970s and their commercial jingle that sang, "He didn't know/ The gum was loaded!" Freshen-Up had sugary liquid gloop in the center of the gum, hence the "gum was loaded" phrase.

Here's an actual recording of one of those commercials on the radio.

Got me to thinking... those commercials wouldn't fly today. Why? Because of the similarity between "gum" and "gun" that the commercial is playing on. In 1979, the anti-gun crowd hadn't completely soaked society with a fear of even the mention of a gun. Kids could still play with toy guns and not be mistaken for gangsters by the police... or have the gun confiscated by Mom and destroyed because "we won't have guns in THIS house."

A commercial about a "loaded gum" is just too incendiary anymore. Of course, we probably won't have to worry about it, since Freshen-Up Gum isn't around anymore (that I know of).

Oops, back up... you CAN still buy Freshen-Up Gum online at places like Hometown Favorites. Blow me down.

Oops, maybe not the best choice in idioms. Sorry.

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