Monday, August 31, 2009

592 No Recession for Dogs

592 No Recession for Dogs

You may be eating out less often. You may have swapped your clunker for a more fuel efficient mini-car. You may have taken your summer vacation at a nearby park instead of that trip you wanted to make to Costa Rica. But the poochification of America continues in high gear and there's no recession for dogs.

It's not just the rhinestone collars and winter booties we're talking about. It's the "lifestyle." A dog's life? Bring it on. The latest example comes from our old friends at Mars Candy, the folks who make Milky Way and Snickers bars and M&Ms. Did you know they also make dog food? They do. And they have a new brand called "Cesar Bistro."

Here are some of the flavors: "Steak Tips Sonoma Style..." "Grilled Chicken Primavera," "Steak Florentine... in sauce." and "Tuscan Style Stew with Beef." There's one more, but the label in the ad is obscured. Something with "roasted beef burgundy."

What? How did dogs survive in the wild without this stuff. Can you imagine a cave puppy coming upon a chunk of mammoth meat and turning up his nose, demanding steak tips Sonoma style? Can you imagine that today? We live for our dogs!

Gourmet dog food for the dog who has everything?

It's easy to understand people wanting dog foods that are balanced or fight worms or fleas or whatever. It's perfectly normal to adjust a dog's diet between puppy-hood and old age. But steak tips?

Maybe the Mars folk are preparing us for an extension of the downturn. Pictures of this stuff are more appetizing than most of the dishes they make on the TV cooking shows. Thing is, it can't be cheap.

They are, of course, producing this stuff for us. It makes us feel like we're doing something nice for the dogs. Earth to Mars: The dogs don't care.


--Let's hear it for WEAF, the radio station that eventually became WNBC, also long gone, which aired the first radio commercial this month in 1922, a ten minute ad for an apartment house called Hawthorne Court in Jackson Heights, Queens. The realtor spent $100 for the ten minute infomercial. Hawthorne Court was the client, and among the first of a great New York City real estate tradition, the co-op apartment, tenant owned and operated.

--Beware of computer companies bearing gifts. Someone has sent the governors of several states laptop computers that hadn't been ordered -- and no bills came with them. Are these attempts to eventually collect the money or attempts to collect information, or both?

--They're having a "Grange Fair" near here, the 135th annual, oldest and largest of its kind in the country, we're told over and over again. Meantime, in Scotland, a farmer has paid a record $347,000 for an eight month old ram expected to sire millions of dollars worth of pedigreed sheep. Ah, farmers and their sheep -- no expense is too great for some.

I'm Wes Richards. My opinions are my own, but you're welcome to them.®
©WJR 2009

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