When I was a kid, my favourite mealtime yummysnacks were those little pizzas. You know the ones – you buy them frozen in a kind of mini tower of pizzas (I’m not going to make that joke) in a long plastic bag. Anyway, I loved those. Still, I’ll get the occasional lunchtime yearning for a mini pizza, crinkle-cut chips and baked beans. But I won’t act upon it.
You see, when I was a student and had not had a mini pizza for quite a while (opting for a far healthier diet of pot-noodle based cuisine), I was suddenly inspired for a ‘treat’ and purchased a mini tower of yummy little pizzas. As I popped a couple under the grill, I noticed an extraneous word on the packaging. Sandwiched between the lines ‘Cheese & Tomato’ and ‘Pizzas’ was the word ‘FLAVOURED’ in a smaller font. It was weird, it really stuck out. It bugged me. If it’s cheese and tomato pizza, of course it’s going to taste of cheese and tomato. Something was afoot.
Upon talking to some clever and interesting people, I learned that there had been a change in food labeling laws. My yummytime treats had been renamed as it transpired they contained not enough cheese or tomato to legally be called ‘cheese and tomato pizza’. I can’t remember what ingredients the evil greedy poor-swindling wankstains who made the product had actually swapped the cheese and tomato out for because I’ve never so much as glanced at the product since. Since then I’ve noticed the seemingly-extraneous-but-actually-very-very-helpful words crop up all over the place. Those rubbery cheese slices you put on burgers became in some cases ‘cheese FOOD slices’ and Chinese chicken became ‘chinese STYLE chicken’. I like this. I’m a fan of the not-actually-extraneous-legally-required-words.
I think we should extend it to the media.
The Sun would become a ‘news flavoured paper’
The Sunday Sport – ‘newspaper textured pornography’
Fox News would be ‘journalism style right-wing propaganda’
It’s easy, really.