Posted by: roamingolivia | November 18, 2010

Two things British people should know about

I was talking to David about the technological advances in lighting – like new lamps that you touch, and they turn on and off (rather than looking for a light switch, which is obviously really difficult). “Oh, that technology’s been around for a long time. What about the Clapper?”

“The what?” he said.

“The Clapper – you clap to turn your lamps on and off.”

We discussed this for a while, but it made me realise that either David specifically or, more worryingly, everyone I know in the UK missed out on this trend. Lucky for y’all, there’s YouTube, a weird storage place for things that were shown on TV before the internet was really invented:

It’s weird how boring that commerical is, right?

And within seconds, my mind had linked the Clapper to Chia Pets. I don’t really know why, although they did appear in weird TV adverts at around the same time. David didn’t know about Chia Pets either! Oddly (or not), other people associate these two things together, and so if you look up the Clapper on YouTube, it automatically suggests you may also want to watch the Original Chia Pet commercial as well:

So, British friends – do you know about these things? Or did you miss out?



  1. Nope, the Clapper never made it over here, I don’t think. We had something like Chia Pets (though not Chia, obviously, which I’d never even heard of until a minute ago).

  2. Does this mean they don’t know about the Shamwow or the “I’ve fallen and I can’t get up” commercials as well?

  3. I had to look up Shamwow but totally remember that. And I’ve fallen and I can’t get up! There are so many things to teach them.

  4. In was just about to ask if you had Big Trak, then found out there was a Soviet version (second insight of the day after finding out evil George Soros speaks Esperanto)

    Presumably nuclear powered.

    But as a rule we’ve always looked snobbishly (though in reality enviously) at the tack available to our American cousins. We just slated it because we couldn’t have it. Like bananas and dental care.

  5. Wait, I don’t understand. The BigTrak was a toy, right? Not an actual tank?

  6. Bizarrely, my cousin who works in retail TV was responsible for the introduction of the Shamwow into the UK. And the Snuggie (although in the UK it’s unappetisingly called the Slanket)

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