So I go to this grocery store every week and at the check out, the cashier always asks me if I am interested in the “Deal of the Week”. It’s usually something dumb like Q-Tips, or maybe some TAMPONS or toothpicks, things I don’t use all that often. I’ve conditioned myself to just say “No Thanks” and carry on with my bagging. I think the store has a policy where you get the thing for free if the cashier neglects to mention it, and I sometimes wonder how many times a customer will wait quietly while their groceries are rung up and at the end of the transaction shouts, “AHA! You failed to mention the Deal of the Week. Hand over that Lip Balm!” I’ve never been in that particular situation and I think even if I were, I would just let it slide. I’m sure the cashier gets into trouble if that ever happens, and who wants to cause a commotion over hair elastics.
But this week was different.
The cashier held up the “Deal of the Week” asked if I wanted it, and before I knew what was happening, I said “YES!”
It was toothpaste. And you know, toothpaste is one of those things. It wasn’t on my grocery list for this week, but I’ve got teeth and I know I’ll eventually need to get some so if this nice lady is offering it to me and it’s the DEAL OF THE WEEK then I’d be an out-and-out fool to turn her down, right?
I got home and I looked closer at the product.
It was Crest, but it was some fancy “Sensitive Teeth” style with “whitening” stuff built right into it.
I knew there would be trouble.
First of all, I generally buy the cheapest toothpaste I can get. I’m not a slave to a brand. Most of the time, where I shop, the cheapest kind is Colgate, so that’s what I get. My wife, on the other hand, is an un-repentant Crest user, and balks at my thriftiness and thinks I should be consistent. Who’s right? Who’s wrong? Only one man can decide. Please stand as Judge John Hodgman enters the courtroom and delivers the obscure cultural reference.
So you’d think she’d be happy with the Crest, right?
WRONG. She doesn’t believe in the “whitener” toothpastes. She thinks they strip your teeth of its enamel and although you may enjoy some bright “Guy Smiley” style teeth in the short-term, you are doing long-term damage to your chompers and you’ll end up with grey teeth, and no one will want to kiss you or even hang out with you and you’ll die penniless and alone.
She’s rarely wrong in these instances.
To her, the basic mint paste is all she needs. She doesn’t even believe in gel. She thinks it’s “Show-Offy”.
Also, this “sensitive teeth” thing sounds like a racket to me. If you’ve got sensitive teeth, GET THEM CHECKED OUT, MOTHERFUCKER! It probably means you’ve got the tooth cancer and God have mercy on your soul. Buying some special toothpaste isn’t going to amount to a hill of beans as far as your sensitivity goes. (And maybe don’t use such cold water. Use lukewarm water when you brush. I think you’ll find it’s the coldness of the water that is bugging you, not your dumb toothpaste.)
Also: the taste. I don’t know if it’s because of the “sensitivity beads” in the paste, or the “whitening flecks” or some other dark alchemy, but the paste tastes funny. It almost has a Baking soda taste to it, which isn’t very pleasing upon the tongue. It feels like when you’ve ordered a regular Coke and they bring you a Diet Coke and it looks like Coke but it tastes weird, like watermelons? Yeah, this is the Diet Coke of Toothpaste, you guys.
And finally: the price. I paid $3 for this tube of toothpaste you guys, according to my receipt. It was originally $6, so I guess technically half price is a “deal” but who in their right mind would ever pay $6 for a tube of toothpaste? The same people who pay $6 for a dozen eggs, knowing that the chickens have been roosting on bean bag chairs or whatever, right? And it’s only 95 ml, which is on the small size of tubes, if you want to compare.
It reminds me of that old joke Woody Allen liked to tell about the restaurant. One luncher said, “The food here is terrible.” and her lunch mate said, “And such small portions!”
The toothpaste is terrible and there isn’t enough of it to justify the price.
So there you have it. I’ve got this tube of expensive, weirdly tasting, potentially tooth destroying paste, and I’m the only one in the house that will use it BECAUSE I AM IRISH AND STUBBORN. Nice knowing you.
How’s YOUR week going?