There's something a little sad about the fact that shopping has become the Western world's favorite leisure activity, but I guess if we're trapped in a post-capitalist consumer society the best we can do is follow Paul Lukas's advice and treat the corporate wastelands of our industrial decline as playgrounds and art galleries beyond the scope of shrinking government entitlements and endowments. In Inconspicuous Consumption
the fetish value of the obscure and bizarre products that occupy the back shelves of supermarkets is explored in loving detail. If you wish to know the pleasures of sauerkraut juice, toothpick dispensers, and adhesive nipple covers then this collection of articles from the zine Beer Frame
should be your Baedeker to the land of ironic shopping.
From School Library Journal
YA. A short, enjoyable book that will have teens reading chunks aloud to their friends. Its premise is that we take many interesting/bizarre/obscure commercial products for granted and don't even notice their presence. Lukas offers a page or two of his takes on 105 of them, as well as the amusing results of his efforts to learn more from the manufacturers (the addresses of all of which are given in the back). The author has a true eye for kitsch and writes in a breezy, humorous style. Did you know that the gizmo used to measure your shoe size is called a Brannock device? Ever considered using an Etch-a-Sketch to write an untraceable ransom note? Familiar with the concept of bottled water for cats and dogs? A fun read?be forewarned, though, that there appears the occasional obscenity used as an adjective.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.