Monday, November 03, 2003

Atkins is everywhere

What do Jesus and Dr. Robert Atkins have in common? Well, aside from the fact that I've celebrated the demise of each on my birthday, each also burst onto the scene with a whole lot of rules that ran contrary to wisdom, condoning eating as much pork as you want. And after each died, his belief system has spread like wildfire, particularly among Americans.

Atkins, like God himself, is now everywhere, and everyone wants on the bandwagon. Take KFC, for instance, which is now -- incredibly -- portraying itself as a high-protein/low-carb alternative. But before you pull a Jared and start eating one particular kind of fast food every day, at every meal, remember this: Kentucky Fried Chicken is still dripping with saturated fat, and if you eat it at every meal, you're still going to be one greasy bastard. Until you have a heart attack and die, anyway.

Nerds, too, have jumped aboard the good ship Atkins. A recent article describing the phenomenon explains it as nerds seeing the Atkins diet as more than a mere diet, but as a "body reengineering hack."

It seems to me that this might just be the way to market to nerds. If going low-carb can be seen as hacking your body to lose fat, somebody like The Gap might profit by convincing nerds that buying stylish new clothes is like hacking your wardrobe to upgrade your date potential. Or Proctor & Gamble could say that using a Swiffer is like hacking your floor to be less dirty.

I suggest that advertisers everywhere hack their marketing campaigns to overclock their nerd-selling coefficent.

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