As classes resumed at that large university on the Montlake Cut… …30,000 undergraduates returned to campus. I like to visualize 30,000 people as the entire population of Walla Walla. I also like to picture them all plugging in their dorm fridges simultaneously, causing a tangible – visible spike on the utility grid. However, before they can plug in, they need to order their fridges from Amazon and wait a few days for some poor sucker to schlepp them those final fifty fucking feet to the mail room. In the past couple weeks, I got to move these refrigerators (I got to move these color TVs)
The packaging for this retro mini Frigidaire features a ghost bike in the vignette portrayed on the side. I can almost hear the designers and photographers sitting around a virtual conference room table discussing the look they’re going for here: an interior shot of an imaginary apartment or dorm room. The bike to them is just an accessory to the intended look & feel. They “ghosted” it for their purposes. But to me it’s a ghost bike and I had to double take and pause for a moment because I take ghost bikes seriously. I’ve seen too many of them on the streets of Seattle, but that’s another story.
When competing for consumers’ attention, gaining a split second pause is effective marketing. A double take is a win. Getting a gut feeling out of a potential buyer is gold. I guess that’s what the ghost bike did for me. In addition, my grandmother had a full size fridge like this, with the pull handle, the real thing that this retro is throwing back to, which gives me some sort of appreciation. The built-in bottle opener is also a plus. I’m not in the market for a minifridge, but this marketing got my attention both before and after I schlepped it across campus.
* “Bankrupt on Selling” -Modest Mouse