When Something New Is Really Something Old In Disguise


Standing in the sandwich line at Potbelly, my friend suddenly reached out and grabbed a bag of Zapp’s Sour Cream and Creole Onion potato chips.

“Hmmm. Very interesting,” she said. “Creole onion. I want to see how these taste.”

“They are sour cream and onion chips,” I replied. “What do you mean you want to see how they taste?”

“But they are Creole onions.”

“Oh God, marketing victim, they are sour cream and onion potato chips. You’ve had them 100 times before.”

“Screw you. I’m getting them anyway.  

A few minutes later, we sat down to eat our lunch. With her hand in the potato chip bag, she looked at me and said, “You were right. They are just sour cream and onion potato chips.”

Packaging and marketing are important things to watch out for in every aspect of our lives, whether it is a new kind of chips or a new relationship.  Sometimes we assume that the new person in our life is better for us because they are totally different from the last person we dated. Only later do we see that we have chosen a different version of the same thing. Person #1 may have been insecure. However, person #2 was insecure with a great job, wonderful family, and financial security.

At the end of the day, different doesn’t always mean better. It just means that someone knew how to get you to take a closer look at what they were offering. To put it in other terms, they knew how to market themselves as the Creole onion instead of the onion.

Here are a couple of other examples:

On Relationships

Person #1: “I don’t want a relationship right now.”

Person #2: “I want to make sure that when I am ready to commit to the love of my life, that I am ready to give them my all, my everything, and that every aspect of my life’s vision can be fully extended to them and only them.”

On Careers

Person #1: “I hate my job.”

Person #2: “I am searching to find that one job that makes me excited about waking up in the morning and has me thanking the universe for being surrounding by my passion.”

Whether it is a product or a person, we can all be duped by neon lights, words, and appearances. It happens to the best of us. Having the wool pulled over our eyes enables us to get a little closer to finding what we are looking for. It is a lesson that teaches us to be aware of smoke and mirrors and to focus on what is inside of the packaging.    

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