GARY D. GADDY
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Friday, May 6, 2011
Viagra and blue M&M's in unprecedented joint recall

McLEAN, Va. -- In an unprecedented joint-recall announcement Mars and Pfizer Incorporated have requested that consumers return to the place of purchase all blue M&M's and Viagra® tablets bought between December 25, 2010 and February 14, 2011.
 
Industry analysts say the recall is a result of a steady stream of consumer reports that both products were working much better than advertised.
 
"Best New Year's Day I ever had," said Emilene Snutter of East Chester, Pennsylvania. "Earl actually put down his remote at the end of the fourth quarter of the Rose Bowl with Wisconsin driving to tie the game.  At the time I thought it was the jalapeño dip but during NFL playoffs it became clearer.  After my sister-in-law, Earlene, came over for bridge last Saturday night, I figured it out for sure.  She won't touch a blue M&M.  Very traditional, you know."
 
"Anyway, after Earl emptied the candy dish," added Mrs. Snutter, "he was frisky as a squid on Sunday morning.  We barely made it in time for the sermon."
 
Others caught in the mix-up had a quite different experience.  Viagra user Robert McCann said, "I didn't get anywhere with Hilda, but I didn't care, the tablet just melted in my mouth not in my hand.  You woulda thought it was a dark Belgian chocolate not sildenafil citrate."
 
Neither media-savvy Mars execs nor the PR-meisters at Pfizer could provide an adequate explanation for the embarrassing snafu.
 
"We cannot comprehend how this could have happened.  While we share the same blue-dye manufacturer and the same trans-shipper, we do not understand at all how our products could have become interchanged," admitted Pfizer chief executive officer Ian Read.
 
"We are understandably very concerned, as both companies may lose millions in potential revenue," said Ryan Bowling, Director of Public Relations for Mars. "For this to happen just as consumers were beginning to accept blue M&M's as unobjectionable is very poor timing," he added.
 
"Blue M&M's, as many of you know, are manufactured at a separate location from the traditionally colored M&M's and some distance from the packaging facility," said Bowling.  "But that doesn't explain how they got switched inside the bags and blister packs."
 
Pfizer Incorporated, which is headquartered in New York, said that its Kalamazoo, Michigan-based Research and Development Division is warning M&M consumers about priapism (πριαπισμoς), a painful condition which can last for more than four hours, and has been reported among some Tollhouse cookie consumers.   To avoid long-term injury, it is important that the cookies be allowed to cool at least 15 minutes before eating.
 

The battle for the University of New Jersey
 
DURHAM, N.C. — Duke University filed a suit in U.S. District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina which asks that Rutgers University "cease and desist from referring to itself, or any of its constituent entities," as "The University of New Jersey." Duke's suit says that this is necessary in order to prevent confusion by the public between the two schools.
 
In its reply Rutgers University made its case for being The University of New Jersey by noting that it launched in the past semester a two-year initiative called Project Civility, which is aimed at getting Rutgers students and faculty to treat people better.
 
The Rutgers' program's organizer Kathleen Hull jokes that the program's name could be, "Project Civility: You got a problem with that?"
 
Rutgers' student government president Yousef Saleh says he'd like for students to be more thoughtful on the university's buses, especially with their cell phones, and to stop slamming their textbooks closed before class is over.
 
Off the record several Duke administrators said such a civility program was unlikely to be offered at Duke since if it were effective it would mark the certain end of the Cameron Crazies.
 
 
Gary D. Gaddy, on principle, refuses to eat blue M&M's.
 
A version of this story was published in the Chapel Hill Herald on Friday May 6, 2011.
 
Copyright  2011  Gary D. Gaddy  

Authored by Gary G. Gaddy at 12:01 AM EDT
Updated: Friday, July 15, 2011 4:53 PM EDT
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