Every so often Smug Scout sees a product that is so Smug that it all but takes her breath away. This happened to her yesterday in Silver Lake where she went to observe the self-righteously Smug local color. She was waiting on a line that barely crawled forward (all the better to attract hype-seeking hipsters) at a Smug coffee source called Intelligentsia, when she spotted a hand-stencilled sign advertising “Cold Pressed Fresh Raw Juice Made by the Juice Maids 16OZ $9.50.” Underneath the sign was some yellow-green liquid in a Mason jar that had a tiny label attached to a piece of string; the string was hand-tied in a jaunty little bow. The label read “Spirit in the Sky” and listed the ingredients: “cantaloupe, orange, basil, lemon ♥.”
Obviously every aspect of the product naming, advertising, pricing, packaging, and appearance signals Smug. Smug Scout happily shelled out ten bucks. Smug Scout could just drink her cute Silver Lake spiritual juice and stop right there. Too bad Smug Scout has a few questions.
- Why are the makers called Juice Maids? Were they formerly milkmaids who went vegan? Are there eight of them like in “The Twelve Days of Christmas”? Smug Scout is amused by the idea of eight virginal women cold pressing her fresh raw juice. That is a large crowd surrounding a Mason jar. She wonders if they ever fight.
- Smug Scout understands that cold-pressing is important because pacifists do not want their gentle fruit and vegetables cut and ground by some savage blade, but why did they have to add “fresh raw”? Might we have otherwise expected the fruit to be rotten, moldy, buggy, and disgusting? Might we have otherwise expected the fruit to be cooked? Smug Scout does know that cooked fruit in a Mason jar is not called juice. It is called backyard artisanal organic jam and costs much more than $9.50.
- What is that elusive fifth ingredient? Smug Scout imagines asking the Juice Maids for an answer to that (completely sarcastic) question.
- Smug Scout: What is that elusive fifth ingredient?
- Juice Maid: Love and spirituality.
- Smug Scout: That sounds like two ingredients.
- Juice Maid: You need both of them.
- Smug Scout: Only if they come in a Mason jar with a bow tie. And a shot of organic vodka.