Some of you are familiar with the man on the right. He is the symbol of Quaker Oats. He was a staple in my house, part of my youth. For years I saw his face all over town.
Like the Brawny paper towel guy and the Marlboro Man he was just one of those people that were people from the neighborhood, my homies.
Homies or not, I really didn’t pay them too much attention. I didn’t smoke or use paper towels, I was an exceptionally clean kid. Just as my mommy. As far I was concerned the Quaker was close to invisible to me, a non-entity.
But as you grow older life has a way of throwing things at you and I slowly became curious about who the guy was and how he came to be the symbol for Quaker Oats. One day I decided that there was no good reason not to call the company to see if they had someone there who could answer my questions.
So I looked up their telephone number and telephoned their customer service department. I went through three customer service agents to try and find the answer to my question and each time met with disappointment.
One of these days I’ll have to share the transcript of those calls but not right now. The bitter feeling I have is too deep. I wasn’t able to fulfill my quest, I didn’t even come back with a shrubbery.
But I haven’t completely given up. One day I’ll find out his name and you rest assured that on that day I will expose the Quaker. Let’s see if that wipes that smug grin off of his face.