Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Not viral marketing

My fantastic wife bought me a Norelco shaver in 1998. It lasted until late 2005, dying of a battery or charger problem, at which point I bought a newer, cheaper Norelco. These are the shavers with the three rotating heads, advertised as "lift-and-cut." The new shaver died of a battery or charger problem within a few months. So I went online an bought a factory reconditioned Braun shaver for only $50.

Let me pause to introduce a binding, one-party contract I have invented. (No doubt someone else has really invented this and there is already a standard for it). I'll call it the Non-Endorsement Contract. Under the terms of NEC, I pledge that I have received no compensation, monetary or otherwise, in exchange for the product review I make in this post, and will not receive any such compensation within one year after this post, and that this pledge is a contract between myself and all readers, such that any reader(s) who can prove in a US court that I am in breach of the pledge is entitled to $10,000 US in damages from me, at which point the contract is void and no other parties have standing, which limits my liability to $10,000 total.

I make this pledge because a certain working girl frequently mentions a certain brand-name product in her steamy blog, and I always wonder if she is being paid to do so. I'm not, and I back that up with the NEC contract. I urge her to do the same.

Anyway, while I waited a week for the Braun shaver to arrive, I grew a short beard. Always in the past when I've grown a beard, due to camping for example, it has hurt to shave. My skin burned and felt tender and raw.

I shaved the week's beard with the Braun, which uses a strip head, not rotary blades, and it didn't hurt a bit. Not at all. I guess "lift and cut" is another way of saying "pull and punish." Marketing often labels a drawback as an asset. (For example, illegal warrantless spying on Americans is marketed as a "terrorist surveillance program.")

And the Braun is much easier to clean than the Norelco. I just pop off the screen and tap it in the sink, then briefly turn on the shaver and discharge the whisker bits into the sink as well. The rotary blades of the Norelco require using a brush, and the whisker bits tended to accumulate within the complex housing for the triple heads regardless.

Norelco bad. Braun good. Guaranteed by NEC.

Left grip is 21 pounds (20, 21, 19), right grip is 73 pounds (60, 73, 58).
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