I admit that the title is both a dead giveaway and an absolute abomination of an earworm, but…oh I don’t have an excuse for either.
Ah the “makes a great gift,” known less for how great the product actually is, and more for how the commercial sticks with you after so many years. The commercials never need updating, just use the existing footage and jingle and slap on the website address and any new versions of the existing product. Cost effective and…
And speaking of electrical outlets that allowed the turning on and off of anything with the clap of your hands, have I got a product for you!
And no, it doesn’t involve images you can’t bleach out of your eyeballs, Old Couple In The Dark!
Or this image burned into your brain.
Great Grandma’s favorite!
Today’s commercial takes the love of gardening and the ability to do so indoors, and makes the flower pot the attraction. We know how well The Clapper did (or didn’t) work, so I can only imagine how well this one went over.
Sing it with me, friends, because you can…and the song is stuck in your head…
Ah yes, the Chia Pet. Boasted as “the pottery that grows” and “makes a great gift!”, this was the other item you never knew you needed, and the gift you bought someone who had everything, including that Chia Puppy you bought them for Christmas last year.
No, I’ve never received one of these, and quite frankly, I’m shocked with everyone who knows me. Who seriously overlooks this type of novelty when they think of me?
First created in September 1977, and trademarked in October 1977, the Chia Pet was being imported from Mexico, and caught the attention of Joe Pedott while he was attending a housewares convention in Chicago. The Chia Pet is produced by Joseph Enterprises, which totally explains why people in Clapper commercials are watching Chia Pet commercials. The product was simply a terra cotta pot shaped like an animal, with the first animal introduced being the Ram in 1982.
That Ram was the beginning of a novelty that has seen the Kitten, Puppy, Bear, Bull, and even…a tree.
I also remember the Chia Herb Garden, which I thought was stranger than a Chia tree that was marketed as something to keep your Chia Pet company.
These days, the classic Chia Pets (which now include an Alligator, Frog, Turtle, Pig, and Hippopotamus) are still manufactured, but have also expanded to include licensed characters sprouting a tuft of Chia. Bob Ross, Estelle Getty, Scooby-Doo, Garfield, Shrek, Looney Tunes characters, SpongeBob, and Former President Barack Obama have all gotten the Chia treatment.
You could even grow Chia chest hair on Richard Simmons!
How did I miss this one?!
What I didn’t miss? Saturday Night Live parodying the whole craze of growing Chia!
How was Chia Flat Top never a thing?!
During the holidays, I usually spot these along a back wall past electronics and near the seasonal department at Target. The temptation has always been there to try one of these, but I’m aware of the utter disappointment of Chia Pets. That’s not really a spoiler alert, you’ve undoubtedly came to the realization that this product can’t possibly be great. Somehow, the whole industry has managed to sell 15 million units as of 2019, mostly around the holiday season. Joseph Enterprises even sells replacement seeds and Chia seeds in bulk as a nutritional supplement, and the herb garden is still made.
When I was in sixth grade (1994-1995), my class had Mr. Vaughn. He was a great teacher, hands down one of my favorites. Several of us got him ties – he loved novelty ties, and I remember buying him a Looney Tunes tie from Caldor for Christmas. But one of my classmates got him a Chia Pet (I think the Puppy or the Pig, I don’t remember), and we all laughed when he opened it. I remember mentioning it in seventh grade during religious education (I went to public school, so I went to CCD until eighth grade), and my classmate Vince, who was in my sixth grade class the year before, laughed and said “I was the one who gave it to him!” That was the first, last, and only time I knew someone who was gifted a Chia Pet. Unfortunately, Mr. Vaughn didn’t keep it at school, so we never got to see the wonder of an animal growing a tuft of Chia.
Of course, this is the point of the article where I share the wonders of the product or service I’ve discussed at great length. I could have hunted down the more recent commercials (I’ve seen a some in the last few years), but for me, there is only one Chia Pet commercial, in the same vein of there only being one true Clapper commercial. Of course, that commercial shows this commercial, so it only makes sense that we’d follow up that genius product with the original commercial for this product.
This will be stuck in your head all day!
I’d love to know your Chia experiences, and how well (or not) your Chia grew. And if you ever had a Chia Herb Garden, tell me what that was like?
Was it ever as lush and incredible as the commercials made it out to be?
Time lapse makes it all so incredible, don’t you think?
Have a fantastic Flashback Friday, and a great weekend!