Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Talking tampons...

Yes, more bothering.

A while ago, I bought a box of tampons. Not my usual ones but some other brand as I'm currently in a financial tight spot, need to be frugal and they were on sale.

So, there I was in the privacy of my own bathroom. I open the box and select one. Hmm, there's writing on the wrapper, I wonder what it says? I was anticipating 'this end up' or similar but my eyes were met with, "You can do it!".... wtf? I know I can do it. I've been menstruating monthly for over 25 years, I know what I'm doing here you stupid, patronizing tampon.

Just to see, I select another one and it reads, "All you can do is your best." Oh, give me a fucking break! I want feminine protection here not psychotherapy. I dump the contents of the box out onto the counter and see that there are all sorts of comments.

One not included in the above photo was "Work it out!" When I read that I instantly thought about that constipated accountant joke* and seriously wondered what I might be getting into if I used this product.

But work it out is exactly what I did; it wasn't difficult.

I'm suppose to read these little slogans and feel the love and associate that lovely warm feeling to this product and then when I'm in the store buying my next box of tampons I will remember the nice words that these talking tampons uttered and the warmth that I felt and purchase this product again. And again. And again.

Most advertising bothers me but this sort of insidious, intrusive marketing really irritates me. I don't want to live in a world where some of my most private moments (that I am discussing openly on the internet) are contaminated with attempts to manipulate my mind.

On the plus side, these talking tampons reminded me of an interesting documentary series I watched a few years ago called 'The Century of the Self'. It describes how those in positions of power can use the theories presented by Sigmund Freud to manipulate the masses. Much of the documentary is about Freud's nephew, Edward Bernays who was one of the first people to use Freud's theories in advertising to manipulate people's consumer behaviour. And I've decided to try a DivaCup.

Here is a short snippet from the documentary but I recommend watching The Century of the Self in its entirety; it's fascinating. I'm trying to find a version with subtitles or CC. If anyone knows of one, can you let me know.

Update! I deleted the embedded video as it seems to interfer with the comment feature. And! I found a transcript of the entire documentary. Not as good as CC or subtitles but better than nothing.

*How did the accountant cure his constipation?
-- He worked it out with a pencil.


  1. too full of snot to think properly. Disappointed you hadn't found a box of tampons that talk. Not just writing..

  2. In Canada:


    In the USA:


    Doesn't talk. Works a treat.

  3. I'll sit this one out.

  4. aaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!

    my eyes!!!! my eyes!!!!!!!!!!!

    good god woman, post a warning for us delicate, sensitive souls..... dj

  5. I notice ages ago that a certain brand have "have a happy period" branded all over them

    Who do they think they are kidding , who possibly thought that was a good idea?

    There's also a tv ad showing mother nature bringing "your monthly gift"

    OMG you've got me so worked up now GRRRRRRRR


  6. Hi Z,

    I've been having thoughts of designing some talking tampons to send back to the ad wizards who came up with the idea... a box of tampons with slogans such as... "up yours!" and "shove it!" and what not... lol...

  7. UK


    Mine's called Mildred...

  8. Hey I was wondering what happened to my comment. I'll try again:

    Too funny. Can you imagine if the "inspirational" slogans had been written by PMSing women? Ha, ha.

  9. Oh my gosh you had me in stitches laughing at this post. Whoever thought of slogans on tampons should be shot.

  10. This is good stuff. I want in. Found your blog though SpeakUp Librarian. I havent laughed that hard in a long time. Thanks. :)

  11. Hey Amy Kay! Welcome to my blog!

    "I want in"... that's a very appropriate slogan! :D :D :D

    I have visited your site before... I recognise you! ...from the blogosphere I mean! I will go re-visit yours now...

  12. Am I losing it? Didn't you use to have a blog Amy Kay?