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Monday, July 25, 2016

Virtual people, real food

Posted Thursday, August 9, 2007, at 11:58 AM

It's true. Virtual people are now making real food. The marketing concept hopes that the values of good old Mayberry, the setting of'The Andy Griffith Show" will translate into big sales. CBS Consumer products has given a whole new meaning to the words "TV dinner."

It's not an altogether new concept ... for years we've seen our favorite actors, sports figures and cartoon characters endorsing all sorts of things, even fictional or based-on-a-real person brands have been marketing staples for years. But this goes a step further.

CBS has launched a new line of "Mayberry's Best" foods. Yes, you, too, can get Aunt Bea's home cookin' in a can, or her biscuits in a box

The hope is that the buying public will believe they, too, can have a slice of southern comfort food by opening a can or box labeled "Mayberry's best."

Now Nearly everyone knows Aunt Bea had to be a good cook. Mayberryans were always cooking, or dining out, or picnicing, or preparing jams and jellies for the fair. CBS Consumer Products has even given a line from the show a new version of immortality by making it the product line's tag line "Eatin' speaks louder than words!"

But will it be good? Chances are, test kitchens have done their best, and some will find these tasty. As for me, I've never had anything that came out of a can that was as good as Mama's cookin,' but that's where this line has a better-than-average chance. Nobody's ever really had Aunt Bea's cooking, so who's going to argue that they didn't get it right?

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There was once a man named, or at least called himself, William Least Heat-Moon. That was NOT his real name. He was a professor at MU in Columbia. The same year he was divorced and lost his tenure, he packed his Ford station wagon, threw the trusted dog in the front seat and set about traveling the lesser roads around the perimeter of our country. He wrote a book about these purported "Travels With Charlie," and called it "Blue Highways." It was a totally interesting book telling of the adventures, misadventures, the people and most everything else of interest during his months long voyage in his dilapidated station wagon.

One thing in the book that I have not forgotten, even after all these many years, was his description of the many and varied foods he ate. Here he talks about the "three calendar" cafes. These are the mom and pop cafes that sport at least three large agri calendars on their walls. These are usually the Garst and Thomas seed corn calendars. At least you can get the picture. According to William, (I can't remember his real name), those were the places to eat that served food just the way Aunt Mabel used to make.

About the "Mayberry" foods. I think Barney Fife said it best, "lets nip it in the bud, nip it in the bud."


-- Posted by dundee43 on Tue, Aug 14, 2007, at 10:28 PM

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