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—Take a look. We put the picture's name on everything. Merchandising! Merchandising!
Yogurt (Mel Brooks) in Spaceballs

—Now available: Survivor: Pearl Islands buffs, the same designs worn by contestants on the show!

Who in their right mind would buy a Survivor: Pearl Islands buff? And who at CBS thought people would want to buy a Survivor: Pearl Islands buff? What good are they once this season ends?

—Yeah, that chair is from the Real World: Boston house. How cool am I?

Merchandising has really grown out of hand in this country.

At work, I'm working on a holiday gift campaign for the UCLA Store. One featured item is a $28 Christmas tree ornament that's basically a diamond-shaped piece of glass three inches on each side with a UCLA logo etched on it. There's also a $21 glass jar with a snowman painted on one side and "University of California Los Angeles" written underneath. Combined, that's $49 (plus tax) worth of glass with UCLA's name on it.

Glass.

I can see the appeal of UCLA apparel and mugs, but I don't understand why a public school needs to sell its own dog bones, oven mitts and dining sets for toddlers. This kind of creative merchandising is not only unnecessary, but also quite tacky.

Bill O'Reilly's website sells "Spin Stops Here" doormats, and according to O'Reilly, this item frequently sells out. When I look at a "Spin Stops Here" doormat, I think of a bargain bin at Wal-Mart. What, is a plain colored doormat too tasteful? So much, in fact, that you'd rather spend $50 (plus shipping and handling) on a doormat with "The Spin Stops Here!" and "BillOReilly.com" printed on it in ugly text?

Recently, we received a Buckeye E-Bike at work. The company who makes them wanted Licensing to approve a Bruin E-Bike.

One of the photographers at work assembled the Bike and it turned out to be nothing more than an electric scooter with Ohio State logos plastered all over it. Even the AC adapter has an OSU logo on it.

—Let's see here. To show my school spirit, I can A) buy an Ohio State t-shirt or B) blow $450 (plus shipping and handling) on an OSU-"themed" electric scooter that's impractical, really, for traveling anywhere. Hmmm…

We need to re-establish discretion in this country. There's way too much frivolous merchandise on the market. Retailers: Stop selling shit that you know is stupid. Consumers: Stop buying stupid shit and they'll stop selling it. Enough said.

EXITprint's regional design annual 2003

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