5/15/2013 12:01:00 AM Harbor Springs...Now and Then
Cynthia Morse Zumbaugh
Do you know one of the indications that we, as a people, are not what we could be? The warning label phrases on everything that we buy. If you need to be warned to not use your hair dryer while in the bath tub or while sleeping, or not to stick your hand in a blender while the blades are going around, how productive a member of society are you? If it is necessary to tell you that a plastic bag from the dry cleaners is not a toy, perhaps parenthood shouldn't have been on your horizon; it is, after all, not only a plastic bag but one that is reeking of chemicals.
If you have to be told to aim your air hammer away before shooting it, to only hold your chainsaw from the right end or that the little bags of silica that are packed in with new shoes are not good for human consumption, perhaps you shouldn't be living without constant supervision. If your vacuum has to remind you not to pick up anything that is currently in flames, if you need instructions to know that you should avoid dropping your air-conditioner from the window and if someone needs to remind you that you should remove your clothes before ironing them, you may have a problem.
Seriously, who needs the packaging on your super hero cape for Halloween to remind you that this garment does not give you the ability to fly or the final instruction on a woman's hygiene product to tell you to pull up your underwear? I love the Dial soap package that says, "Use like regular soap." Duh. And one of my favorites, if you are tempted to use your hair color as an ice cream topping, I say go ahead and do it. Perhaps Darwinism will kick in at that point.
Moet Champagne instructs you to remove the label prior to microwaving? and most champagne bottles warn you to point the bottle away before popping the cork so you don't shoot yourself in the eye. Slush puppies caution that "ice may be cold" and, of course, coffee can be hot. Millions of dollars later, McDonalds now know that and share that warning. And some jigsaw puzzles now tells us that there is "some assembly required."
Do we need to have Nytol warn us of possible drowsiness? Isn't that why you would be taking it? Is it a surprise to see a notice on a carton of eggs that (shock and amazement,) this product may contain eggs? Here's a tip of my own; I'm guessing peanut butter may contain peanuts. Or one of my favorite labels, found on a jet ski, telling you not to check the fuel level with a lit match or an open flame. Finally, New Holland Tractors offer advice that we can all appreciate, as their warning label simply says "avoid death" with an adorable sketch of a person being crushed between the bucket and the tractor.
The real reason that this is so disturbing is two-fold. First, if the warning label is there, chances are someone actual did whatever it warns against and then because they probably sued the company after the fact. Combine a lack of common sense with no personal responsibility and you have frivolous lawsuits that result in the necessity of these warnings.
If someone gave me the choice of having Einstein's I.Q. but no common sense or a normal I.Q. with at least the sense God gave a goose, I'd go for the common sense every time. Common sense and ingenuity go a long way and based on the warning listed here, they are in short supply with at least a portion of our population. Couple that with a belief that your own irresponsible actions are indeed someone else's fault and "stupid" labels are the result. I wish there could be instruction in common sense, but I think you either have it or you don't.
Now that our good weather is returning, remember as you search for mushrooms that no one is running through the woods (yet) ala Alice in Wonderland, with eat me or don't eat me stickers. Be careful and only eat what you know is safe.
Before we get to all the birthdays this week, a couple of Happy Anniversary wishes going out, first to Jon and Gail Rhine on May 20th and to Jennifer and Scottie Juilleret on May 22nd. Many, many more for both couples.
Now, on to the birthdays. On Thursday, May 16th, Happy Birthday to Chris Benson and Jeff Bernhardt and on Friday to Diane Tippett Justice. Saturday we send birthday wishes to Kevin Olson, Justine (Tina) Jezisek, Crystal Rankin and Brandon Kresnak. On Sunday, Happy Birthday wishes go out to Terry Ranney, Scott Juilleret, Talina Corey and Rick Swadling. Monday, May 20th, we send birthday thoughts out to Mary Hartley and on Tuesday to Marcia Williams. Finally on Wednesday, May 22nd, Happy Birthday to Kassidy Hadix, Leigh Bandemer Cassidy, Glenda Kuhns Kramp, Josh Raese and Marc Svatora. Hope that you all have wonderful birthdays and great weather in which to celebrate.