Wednesday, March 6, 2013

The 70's: Sick Was Better Than "The Cure"

Nowadays, some kids embrace being ill. A chance to lie in bed, sleep late, hang out on the couch in front of Disney XD, or XL or XFL or whatever.... so many options with all the electronic handheld gizmos available. I'm not saying kids didn't pull that crap in my day.

 Most of us are familiar with Ferris Bueller's "cold and clammy hands", Elliot from E.T.'s "thermometer in the lightbulb" trick, or you could just plain make it sound like you were congested, which worked best if you had a hyper-sensitive, or overly fearful mom. You had to be careful what you wished for, however. My own kids complain about the taste of OTC meds and cough syrups....and my wife and I try to tell them:

"You have no idea."

 Does anyone remember the toxic sludges and gritty concoctions and snake oils of our youth?:

 Now I do remember this stuff having a D tacked onto the end of it's if that gave it a military grade toughness that promised to kick your cold's ass, or maybe it was just "next level" Formula 44, for those heightened circumstances maybe you had Ebola or something...

or just felt like whining like the insipid, crying whelp in this video, oddly an adult...

 Vicks Formula 44D....for the oncoming apocalyptic supercold...Stay Ready. Contact the CDC.

Really? A gum, Mom? For my sore throat!!  Wow! It's Orange, too?  Great Lucifer's knee-pads!

Oh, God, it was awful.... and it did abso-freakin' lutely nothing for your throat...
Not one iota...
I swear that even those false-prophet, nothing but candy, Smith Brothers cough drops did more for that scratchy windpipe, if only by making you smile because they tasted so damn good. Aspergum were disgusting, not even remotely tasty enough to give you a placebo effect...Can't believe this trash made it past the testing phase....

I don't know what flavor these children's aspirin were, some quasi-orange, maybe?

....oh, right, that's it,..."BAD", they were "BAD flavored".

... and as if the taste wasn't enough, they kicked up a funky dust in your mouth that blew down your throat and gave you a strange powdered sugar cough (just in case your other symptoms were lonely, and you hadn't developed a cough yet, St. Joe's or Bayer children was there for you.), and once again, relieved no symptoms. I don't think it even lowered a fever....

Wow. The varied flavors were all bad in Sucrets. Horrible.
So you have to sell it somehow. You can almost hear some mad scientist marketing exec throwing the ideas out there: "If we put them in a tin, kids will think they're cool and can carry them around. Mom's will want them to put buttons and pins and shit in. Plus, if we individually wrap this crap, it gives it an air of class. Like Twinkies or Hot Pockets."

Too bad nobody thought to put something of medicinal value in there.

So, my point is OTC meds have advanced exponentially since I was a kid. There's Theraflu, NyQuil, Mucinex....and while not outright cures, the products do greatly relieve the symptoms. And the taste of today's items, while not gourmet finger sandwiches, is infinitely better than the stuff back in the day of "Super Friends", Underoos, and Colorforms.

 I would have rather gone to school than take that crap.

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