Monday, October 24, 2011
Ridiculous Warning Labels for the Moronic and Law Suit Happy
I’m always curious about the assumed IQ’s of those who consume certain products. If the producers thought they were dealing with a target audience that had more common sense than say….Amelia Bedelia then they wouldn’t print such ludicrous instructions on packaging.
I just opened a container of Bonta Emilliane cheese gnocchi, flipped it over to find the cooking directions and laughed out loud reading “remove from package before consuming.” Really? I shouldn’t just aggressively sink my incisors into the thick plastic that encases the dumplings? Was this an actual problem in test markets? I can imagine the dialog.
“The product seems to be well received…so well in fact, that test groups are eating it… package and all. I guess we’d better address that in the instructions so the pygmy brains won’t sue us.”
A few years ago, when James and I flew back to Georgia from California I saw a large hand-written sign above a water fountain inside Enterprise Rent-A-Car. It read “turn water lever and THEN lean into stream of water.” I wonder if people were complaining to management that they weren’t getting any water at first so they had to place instructions reminding them to turn on the water before expecting to be refreshed. Details!!!
One of my favorite idiotic instructions was on a globe I bought for my son Andrew when he first became interested in geography. In small letters floating in the middle of the Indian Ocean read “not to be used as a navigational device.” Seeing that warning made me want to pretend I was lost and take the globe into a gas station somewhere along the interstate and ask the attendant to show me how to get to I-95. But he or she probably wouldn’t get it (as with most of my humor) and explain to me in a deadpan, bored voice that you can’t use a globe as a navigational device. “See it says that right here below Sri Lanka.”
I always love it when buying a new pair of shoes or a purse, to find those miniscule packets of silica gel. I’m not sure what silica gel is, but I’m almost positive that it has nothing to do with silk or ca. But in bold letters on both sides of the packet, read the words “SILICA GEL…DO NOT EAT.” Like I’m in the habit of eating mysterious foreign objects. “Hey what’s this? I’m not sure, but I think I’ll eat it and find out.”
The only people I know who put things in their mouths to learn about them are babies (and those with oral fetishes.)
Here are a few other absurd and comical warnings/instructions I found on rinkworks.com.
- This product not intended for use as a dental drill (on an electric rotary drill). A warning for those who don’t have dental insurance, but no lack of that good old DIY spirit that American was founded on.
- Do not drive with sun shield in place. (on a cardboard windshield shade). “Why can’t I see the road?”
- Do not feed to fish. (on a bottle of dog shampoo). Why just fish? Does that mean it’s okay to feed to wombats, terrapins, guinea pigs and falcons?
- Not intended for highway use. (on a wheelbarrow). I can understand this warning on a riding lawnmower or a golf cart, but who gets the gumption to push a wheelbarrow down I-5?
- Do not eat toner. (on a toner cartridge for a laser printer) I’ve been hungry before, but never THAT hungry. Is it okay to drink it? I don’t see a warning label telling me not to.
- May irritate eyes. (on a can of pepper spray) YA THINK??!?
- Warning….may contain nuts. (on a package of peanuts) It MAY Contain nuts? Are these people sure about anything?
- Do not use orally. (on a toilet bowl brush) Just stick with your toothbrush from now on.
- For use by trained personnel only. (on can of air freshener). And just what is the training program like to become a certified air freshener sprayer? Is it difficult? Can I get in?
- Caution! Remove infant before folding for storage. (On a portable stroller) That is…unless you want to fold your infant and store him in the closet with the stroller. Sounds quite convenient.
- Warning! This product moves when used. (on a Razor Scooter)
- May cause drowsiness. (on Nytol sleeping pills) Can someone really sue for being drowsy?
To laugh at more absolutely ridiculous warning and instruction labels, visit http://www.rinkworks.com/said/warnings.shtml or http://www.forbes.com/2011/02/23/dumbest-warning-labels-entrepreneurs-sales-marketing-warning-labels_slide.html.