Consumer Science Project

Has anyone out there had a good or bad experience with a product and actually written feedback to the company? Does the company even care or respond? What level of love/hate is required to get a response?

I wondered about this in college and picked several products to submit an opinion about. “Wondered about” is code for “had been drinking and was reading the back of a pizza box”. Also, “submit an opinion about” is code for “make up a strange or uncomfortable story about”. Being a poor college student I was inspired by discount brands like Ramen, Malt-O-Meal, and Totino’s Pizza. Basically, anything that was good after a late night of beers.

My three feedback letters would be good, bad, and indifference. I chose randomly and arrived at Malt-O-Meal = Good, Totino’s = Displeased, and Ramen = Luke Warm. The letters were somewhat over the top and meant to garner a response.

Disclaimer: If you have a problem with letter(s) content then please contact the fictional character who wrote them. This was about a decade ago.

Ramen Noodles:


 

Dear Noodle People,

Did you know you can cook these in a couple of Solo cups in a crappy microwave? Me either but you can. What exactly is oriental flavor? I get chicken, beef, and shrimp but I have yet to find an “oriental”. Just a heads up, Asian is the correct term I think. A good friend told me that oriental is a type of rug so does the soup taste like rugs? I guess rug flavored soup is better than people flavored. Nevermind… but the Solo Cup thing is true.

Sincerely,
Ramond Soso


 

My hypothesis here (they won’t respond) was correct because Raymond didn’t voice any real opinion or problems. The Noodle People had no reason to respond. On to the next product.

Totino’s Pizza:


 

Dear Totino’s Assholes,

I am a former customer who, I am happy to report, you just lost. Your discount pizza was the only reliable thing in my life. At an agreeable $0.75 and just enough calories to keep me alive, I enjoyed this product almost daily. This all changed for me last week when your dirty corporate penny-pinching shylock bastard accountants decided to dial back the cheese topping on your traditional personal sized pizza product. The cheese was simply not there. I have seen more hair on a frog’s ass than I found on my pizza that night. Thanks to you, my life is in ruins. RUINS!

My fiancee wanted a quick snack before she had to leave for work at the gas station. I promised to make her something before she left and, dumbass me, took your stupid pizza out of the freezer and without looking tossed it into the oven. I thought I could trust you. She comes flying in late and when she takes the pizza out she looks at me and says, “Where the hell is my cheese?”
I tell her, “I didn’t look and I thought there was some on it.”
She tells me, “You never pay attention to anything and it is because you don’t care! You probably threw the cheese away or ate it yourself you fat bastard!”

I can’t tolerate backtalk like that and long story short I’m serving ten months at County lockup. Because Totino’s can’t be bothered to check the cheese. Is there not a machine to check topping coverage? You better believe it will be a cold day in pizza hell before I ever forgive you for this.

I don’t know how you people sleep at night. I hope you don’t.

Suck it,
Inmate #36432


 

This letter did get a response. It was a form letter apologizing for any lapse in quality and inside the letter were two, seventy five cent coupons. For the record, I still like Totino’s pizza and they have always had a justified amount of cheese considering they cost seventy five cents.

There was nothing strange about the first two responses and I awaited eagerly the response to my third letter.


 

Dear Malt-O-Meal,

I am honored and humbled to be your customer. I know you don’t seek fame and recognition because I see your lack of advertising and corresponding low prices. However, I try and give credit where it is due and your delicious value-priced cereal may have saved my life.

You see, about three months ago I decided to go on a weekend camping trip to the local state park. Actually it wasn’t a camping trip as much as the only place I have found to park my car on my two days off from work as a cook at Ruby’s Diner. I lost my apartment because I spent my rent money on alcohol and scratch-off lottery tickets. I won $300 and tried to turn it into a poker career but I was drunk so that next morning I found myself without pants and a note taped to my butt that said I sold my car for $25. The twenty five dollars was stuck to the side of my leg and it took me a second to find it. Anyway, December in the mountains is kind of cold so I went to the Goodwill with my twenty five dollars and bought pants, a poncho, three socks, and a pair of underwear. I had seven dollars left and I knew if I was going to survive as a hermit in the State park that I would need at least a week worth of food to get me started.

This is where you get the credit for your unselfish service to humanity. I entered the local Wal-Mart and went directly to the cereal aisle. Any good survivalist knows that energy dense Froot Loops are the only way to store energy for survival. According to the serving sizes I needed two boxes which I found out cost $4.35 apiece. Highway robbery. I began the slow walk of shame to the Ramen Noodle aisle but just before I left the cereal area I spotted bags of cereal instead of colorful boxes. On the second row was a huge bag of Fruity O’s for only $3.12 apiece! No pretentious parrot or jungle mazes on the back of the package. Just wholesome and falsely colored sugar hoops. I could have cried from joy. I bought my rations and even had enough change for some double bubble.

My seventh day into sleeping in the attic area of the restroom building a windstorm knocked down a huge pine tree that crushed my legs. The park ranger on duty didn’t check the restroom for three days. The Malt-O-Meal sustained me like a mother penguin regurgitating chewed fish for its young. I survived and was able to file suit with the State for negligence. I was awarded a large sum of money and I never have to work again. I can even afford name brand cereals but guess what? Only Fruity O’s for me.

Since corporations are recognized as individuals under our tax code, I have started a petition to have Malt-O-Meal recognized as a saint by the Catholic Church. You deserve it. You save lives and make a difference. God bless you Malt-O-Meal.

Sincerely,
Lucas Mooney


 

This letter got a response as well. Once again it was a form letter but this time it said something generic about valuing loyal customers and inside were two coupons for seventy five cents off any Malt-O-Meal product of my choice. Ironic? There was also a keychain that had M.O.M. printed on the top and the keychain was a beer bottle opener. I guess the difference in response for rage vs love is a tool for opening beer.

Maybe the customer service department did read the letters and sent me a smart-assed response.

This is all fairly pointless but most of the things I did in college were. Fun but pointless.

Did anyone else out there ever get bored and write fake product letters for fun? Yeah high five! No one? Okay.

-Underdaddy to the rescue.

8 comments

      1. For some reason, that reminded me of the “King of the Hill” episode where Peggy gets a job in the Alamo Beer customer service center.

        (Tangent…ignore as needed)

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  1. I write random letters, but they are most often of the “angry at city officials” genre: i.e., why don’t the lazy cops who sit across the street from my daughter’s school give speeding tickets to people who are, I don’t know, speeding through a school zone while unsuspecting children walk home? Sadly, I was not invited to the Police Officers’ Ball last Christmas.

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