Monday, August 12, 2013

Calgon Take Me Away

I see a lot of people on my Facebook news feed posting "Calgon, Take Me Away!" as a status message meant to indicate that they've got some frustration going on in their lives. The funny thing about many of the people who post that phrase is that so few of them are old enough to know where that phrase originated from. They just see "Calgon, Take Me Away!" as a means to express frustration. 

My response is often along the lines of:

I think that few people truly understand the repercussions of asking Calgon to take you away. Calgon took my mother away once. It was the mid-80s and her work pressures on top of her school pressures as well as having to deal with five rambunctious children had gotten the best of her. So, one day, she just exclaimed "Calgon, take me away!". And that was it. Calgon took her away. We spent months searching for her, trekking through dense jungles and navigating treacherous ocean currents in an attempt to find her. Months later, a number of leads finally panned out and we tracked her to the back room of an Asian laundromat located in the heart of America's largest cities. We asked her captor, Mr. Lee, what he had done to her. "Ancient Chinese secret!" was his cryptic response. And my mother was never the same afterward. So be careful what you wish for. I don't want you to end up calgone.

In all seriousness, for those of you out there who aren't old enough to remember, Calgon (short for "Calcium Gone") ran a successful ad campaign for their bath and beauty products where a woman endures a chaotic scenario, and, by virtue of exclaiming the magic phrase, "Calgon, take me away", is transported to a relaxing bath in a quiet room. Of course, Calgon didn't just make bath and beauty products. They also made Calgon Water Softener and scored yet more commercial gold with their commercial depicting an Laundromat owner claiming that he got the laundry so clean because of an ancient Chinese secret but is soon outed when his wife tells him they need more Calgon. 

Apparently, Calgon bathing products are still available. You can buy Calgon bath beads which feature a number of different scents. And Calgon Water Softener is still out there as well, although I think everyone is in on the ancient Chinese secret at this point.

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