A Christmas Story—tongue sticking to frozen flagpole

    I’m a humor writer. At least I include a light touch of hidden humor in my blog posts. Not today. Today I am a consumer safety advocate a/k/a troublemaker for Target.
    The glossy Target ad in my residential mailbox this week features a young boy sticking his tongue to a frozen flagpole. His blue knit cap and red scarf are dusted with a snow-look. His dark eyes look toward the camera, not the pictured reward—steaming hot Swiss Miss Milk Chocolate with as much calcium an 8-oz glass of milk at the sale price of $1.19. In cold-weather areas, the hot chocolate may be delayed while he waits for emergency paramedics from the local fire department.
    So, you say, how does this make me a consumer advocate? Easy, I say. I didn’t toss the ad. I called Con-Agra, the parent company of Swiss Miss, and questioned whether this conglomerate had authorized the Target advertisement. Not an anonymous complaint. A real let-me-know-the-answer inquiry complete with name and email address. So far, so good.
    I called my local Target because a freeze is predicted for the San Francisco East Bay (can you believe that?). The manager refused (yes, refused) to accept my call. According to his anonymous spokesperson, this ad is on TV so there can’t be a problem!
    Warning: Don’t try this at home (or anywhere else) was not on the ad. In the absence of that warning, and after you’ve seen A Christmas Story, send your emergency bills to Target with a copy to Con-Agra. Don’t forget to include your receipt for Swiss Miss hot chocolate.

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