Up until a couple of years ago, whenever I jumped on a flight to a faraway destination, I would take delight in perusing through the Skymall catalog found in the seat pocket of every airline seat. It would usually be situated next to a barf bag and the safety instructions card. Occasionally the Skymall catalog was front and center.
The Skymall catalog contained all sorts of oddities, such as a bicycle helmet with laser lights to regrow hair on balding men or blow up neck pillows for those contortionists who felt they could get a good night’s sleep on their flight from Peoria to Lubbock or mirrors that let you try on a mustache like the one pictured above.
Quality, solid offerings for the discerning capitalistic society.
Last week I came to the realization that ads on Facebook or Instagram or Twitter are basically electronic versions of SkyMall. With just a few quick clicks of my mouse and solid records of my last bowel movement, and any other personal information the platform can glean out of my interaction, for a low $599 I can have an Android tablet that lets me take notes and nothing else.
I then further realized that “Shark Tank”, the once popular television show where innovators grovel for funding for their latest get-rich-quick scheme, is really just the king of SkyMall with some extra drama to give the whole experience an edge. For those struggling with the aforementioned bowel movements, the inventors of Squatty Potty groveled for millions of dollars of funding from the queen of QVC, so you can raise your legs to Jesus while taking a dump for only $69.95.
I bet you didn’t see that on your last airline flight.