Popular Science Showcase

April 25, 2008

The following column is also going to appear as a Bowl of Cheese podcast later today. Enjoy.

The coffee table in your house probably has on it a magazine or two. The publications are there either to impress visitors, to give you something to flip through while your partner is watching Top Chef or American Idol, or a mix of both.

The magazines in my house run the gamut from UTNE Reader to Scoot Magazine, but that’s to be expected from a writer. Some of the most dog-eared periodicals are Mac|Life and Popular Science because I frequently refer to back issues for tips and tricks on all things electronic and Mac.

I even have a subscription to Boston Magazine and Yankee just so I can keep up to date with local events and the pulse of the region.

From the regular columnists to the special features, each of these mags offers a wealth of knowledge to its readers. And even the advertising sections serve both a financial and societal purpose.

Take Pop-Sci for instance (and yes, Pop-Sci is an acceptable abbreviation for Popular Science…it’s not as cool at NatGeo, but it’s a start), they have a Popular Science Showcase in the back of each issue.

There you can find work tables, 500,000 BTU torches, geodesic dome homes, extra-wide shoes and even human pheromones. That’s right, sex stuff in the back of Popular Science – who woulda thunk it?

Well, I take a special interest in the pheromone ads because the woman who pitches this stuff to geeks like me is Dr. Winnifred Cutler. That’s right, probably a relative who is both a doctor and a renowned creator of the 10X™ Formula to boost your sex appeal. Outstanding.

What’s even better is that Dr. Cutler’s 10X ads have been in the Popular Science Showcase for decades! It’s said (in the ad, so get your grains of salt ready) that Dr. Cutler co-discovered human pheromones in 1986 and received her Ph.D. from UPenn.

Best of all, the research and the product must be valid because in my opinion, Winnifred Cutler is as ugly as a horse.

Add it all up. The ad runs for years. The pitchman is a woman who could pass for a man. The design of the ad could have been done by a fourth-grader. And the testimonials are from a guy in Oklahoma and another in upstate New York, with the best quote being, “The stuff is like catnip. Too many women come after me.”

It must work. The final proof is that Dr. Cutler has updated her look after years of appearing in the ad with a 1964 hairdo. She’s now updated it to a ravishing 1983 look that probably makes all the delivery men growl.

So, if you’re looking for love and need some increased attention from the opposite sex, grab a Popular Science Magazine from the local bookstore. The 10X ad is right in the back.

Or if you’re just looking to impress your guests, get a few issues and leave them on your coffee table open to the Showcase pages. There might be one or two friends who are enamored of the spiral staircase kits or the Super Z Hustler Turf Equipment mower, or even the 4-minute ROM exerciser.

But I’m sure Dr. Winnifred Cutler will do her part to entice some eyeballs toward the magic of 10X and the power of pheromones. Now that’s some popular science.

Also enjoy these before and after photos of Dr. Cutler. What a makeover!

That’s the OLD photo. Here’s the new one.

Interestingly, the ‘alternate text’ box where WordPress allows me to upload photos offers as alternate text for any photo – “Mona Lisa”. That’s ironic.

Keep reading!