Thursday, February 21, 2008

I do whatever my Rice Krispies tell me to

Thank goodness I have a blog. All of the big questions that have burned in me for so many years can at last be asked, not to mention illustrated with high quality digital images.

Why does breakfast cereal packaging seem to be calculated to stir up the religious fanaticism that clearly lurks within American hearts?

Breakfast of the ancient Israelites!

Breakfast of Thich Nhat Hanh

and of vegan Buddhists everywhere!

Potato chips, pasta sauces, frozen dinners, canned soup, cake mix - no other packaged food product even comes close. Why breakfast cereal? There must be a reason. Probably the same reason that the the bumper stickers/t-shirts/buttons that proclaim "I do whatever my Rice Krispies tell me to" are so uncannily funny.

Or maybe I spent a few too many years in graduate school studying Religion.


YDH said...

Religious people take advantage of moments when you are captive to evangelize.
On planes:
Normal Person: What are you reading?
RP: The Holy Bible. Would you like to learn about it?

At Christmas Dinner:
RP: Would you like to find out about God?

At High School Commencement Addresses:
I met a very important friend my sophomore year in high school. blah blah.

The reason should be clear.

Berberella said...

finally, an update !! i'm celebrating spring break by trying to get back in diss revision mode !! so have naturally been checking here when i can't bear to keep trying to get back there .. .. i love the banner and am so pleased to see the little plastic chipkali headlining.
another burning question to ponder: which do you think would melt faster on a hot tawa: that guy or amul cheese (the can wala) ? ? xxxxAndrea

heuretic said...

I think the packaging of breakfast cereals stems from the particular (American) ritual of breakfast eating. That is, one doesn't necessarily stare at a package of pasta while at the table eating dinner. Yet cereal boxes often accompany us at the breakfast table and give us something to pore over while the caffeine takes effect.

cb said...

I totally agree on the captive audience thing. Do you think that it's that old protestant work ethic that keeps us reading our cereal boxes? A post-enlightenment revulsion for the unreasonable body - if you read your breakfast cereal box the gross physical act of eating the cereal will be redeemed?

More importantly, the chipkali would definitely melt before the can-wala amul.

chelle said...

Funny, I just noticed the Ezekiel breakfast cereal this week too. I can't believe you actually bought some!