Christian Schneider

Author, Columnist

The Sliding Scale

If you happened to be in the West Side Madison Best Buy last night, I was the crazy person over in the TV section laughing to himself.  You see, I still have a TV in my kitchen that just runs on an antenna – and I broke the rabbit ears on the old one, so I needed to get a new one.  As I scanned RCA\’s selection of antennas (they come in all shapes and sizes now, apparently) I noticed they had a quality rating system on each box, to tell you how good that particular antenna was.  And the system they use to rate the quality of their antennas is thus:

Standard

Good

Great

Excellent

Superior

and finally, Ultimate.

Aside from \”Standard,\” how are any of these any different?  Is \”Superior\” really better than \”Great?\”  Shouldn\’t they be more honest and move the scale down, so the lowest one is \”Really Crappy,\” the next lowest one is \”Not as Junky,\” and the middle one is \”Standard?\”  I mean, they\’re trying to say each one of their products is good, while saying some are better than others.

This reminded me of the report cards my daughter gets from her pre-school.  If they\’re really good, they get an \”O\” for \”outstanding,\” but if they\’re horrible, they get a \”D\” for \”developing.\”  As in, \”Your child has not developed out of being a knucklehead.\”  I, for one, would welcome a more honest grading system – I think five year olds can handle it.  Except when my daughter came home with all \”K\’s\” – for \”knuckleheaded.\”

1 Comment

  1. I personally hate the new expiration labels on food that say “best when used by Jan 30.” What does that mean? Is there a sliding scale now for food expiration – best when used by Jan 30, sort of OK when used by Feb 6, serve this to your in-laws by Feb 13, unrecognizable by Feb 20?

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