Drop Me a Note / by Courtney Mehlhaff

Today I bought a pack of Halls cough drops, due to the fact that my body just finished doing battle with a flu bug the likes of which it had never before seen. I'm pretty sure that its legend will be passed down through generations of white blood cells, whispered in a tone of reverence and awe. In short, I spent the entire weekend splayed out on my couch, aching to the tips of my eyelashes and grateful (as always) for the invention of Imodium and ibuprofen.

However, now that I'm fully rehydrated and have once again graduated to solid foods, I have a lingering head cold and cough that demand soothing. As I opened my pack of honey/lemon-flavored drops, I noticed a peculiar branding effort. On the wrapper, in addition to the Halls logo, were printed several short messages, presumably intended to be inspirational.

I've seen this trend on individually wrapped items before, most notably on Dove chocolates. I find the little notes a tad redundant for that product. I don't need a pep talk, Dove. I already have your chocolate. In fact, if a pep talk was enough, I wouldn't even need the chocolate. But for the moment, I feel just peachy with this slab of fat melting in my mouth.

Anyway, here's what the Halls wrapper said, with my reactions:

1.  Keep your chin up. This I understand. It's motivating, and it implies that you feel my pain.

2.  Conquer today.  A little more vague, but generally uplifting.

3.  Dust off and get up.  All right, already. We get it. You're not taking any excuses. You're our middle school gym teacher. So quit yer hackin' and climb that effin' rope already!

4.  Inspire envy.  I'm not so sure about this one. What exactly are people supposed to envy? My inflamed nostrils?  My watery eyes?  My general lack of focus due to sinus pressure?

5.  Don't try harder, do harder!  Yoda-esque this is. And maybe kind of dirty.

6.  You got it in you.  I don't know what "it" means. The cough drop? Courage? Mucus? Plus, in addition to being grammatically incorrect, it's way dirtier than #5.

Halls, I see what you're going for here. You've got so much wrapper space, and you're using it to try to make me feel even better than your lovely mentholyptus has already accomplished. But I think you could improve.

Tune in to the next entry for phrases that might actually ring truer with someone who's ill.