Friday, August 7, 2009

Hail to the Ch-Ch-Ch-Cheif!

If you watch Home and Garden TV, which, like another substance I used to rant about in my radio days, is highly addictive and extremely dangerous, you’ve seen the ad. HGTV seems to me to be a lot about homes and not very much at all about gardens, so apparently the people who placed the ads must not watch HGTV and thought they were going to reach plant-lovers.

I’m talking about the ad for Chia Obama.

We saw it again last night, and my wife said “they MUST be kidding - this is so….disrespectful, so wrong”. A chia head modeled after the likeness of our new President. Chia pets came to moderate popularity in the early 80’s, using cheaply-made clay figures, which you smear with paste containing chia seeds, and, the thing sprouts chia hair.

The first chia in the likeness of a human was in 1995, when the San-Francisco based company introduced “Chia Guy”. Prior to that, the chia figures were mainly cartoon characters. To think that they’d put out a likeness of our 44th President and hawk it as “Chia Obama” was nearly too much for us to take.

Most everyone knows the jingle that goes with the TV ad..”cha-cha-cha-chia!!!!”. The ad usually runs most heavily around Christmas time, although I can’t imagine who would buy and give such a thing as a present. Which is why my wife and I were somewhat skeptical that the ad we’d been seeing on HGTV wasn’t real.

Some sort of joke from the nastier wing of a certain political party, which attracts folks like Karl Rove and that Limbaugh person, is what I speculated. But having drawn paychecks from the media for all our professional lives, my wife and I knew no political party spends that kind of money, when there’s no election at stake, and on a channel that never carries any political programming.

The most controversial thing on HGTV is that show where prospective home-buyers narrow it down to three potential properties (House Hunters), and you try and guess which one they’ll actually buy.

So I went on the internet in search of the truth, and within a few moments had placed an order for the Chia Obama. I selected the “Determined Obama” one. There’s also a “Happy Obama” model. Twenty bucks gets you one.

After you order the Chia Obama, you can take a survey, asking you which historical American people and things the chia folks should put out next. The list includes 14 choices, from JFK to Ronald Reagan, from the Liberty Bell to the Statue of Liberty. You can vote for as many as you like.

I’ve had a Davy Crockett Coonskin Hat, a Daisy Red Rider BB Gun, a hula hoop, a Pet Rock, a mood ring, a Pound Puppy, a Cabbage Patch Kid, a Beanie Baby, and probably every other fad that’s come along. But until now, I’ve never had a chia pet. Nor a Chia Obama.

Hail to the cha-cha-cha-Chief!

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