Monday, August 19, 2013


A fascinating (and seemingly endless) stream of "dirty secrets" from  people who work in various industries that they think consumers have no idea about. All this must be taken with a barrel of salt , but a few of my favorites:

I work at a US lobbying firm, and I'm sure no Redditor would be shocked to hear that US legislators are ignorant. You might be surprised just HOW ill-informed a lot of them are, though. Like the Congressman who believed David Cameron was a member of the Socialist party. Or the one that asked me why we called it Russia now, not the USSR. Or the Senator who told me he'd grown up drinking sea water, and it was healthier for you. Or the governor who thought all Jews were killed by Hitler. The list could go on.
75% of people on twitter are fake. I used to work for a social media company, and spent all day creating and acting like people online to connect people to our clients and make them fans of their music/food/whatever. We also had a "blast" program where we could tweet stuff out from accounts to create trending topics. So most of that stuff is organized.
Former paramedic here. I've never once checked, judged, or cared whether you had on clean underwear. Your parents lied.  
ex-Panera Bread employee here. EVERYTHING is microwaved, all soups and pastas come in frozen bags, reheated for the customer. pastries and breads come in "half-baked", bakers just slap on some frosting/fruit, and heat it up. it's all fast-food quality food, but with a good reputation. plus it was terrible to work there.  (*see below as well)
 Video editor here for reality TV. It's fake for the most part. They usually do multiple takes of the "reality" scenes that are staged beforehand. The most recent egregious use of this is Duck Dynasty. They pass the show off as reality tv and they actually have table readings for that show before shoots. Not saying that reality TV isn't sometimes entertaining. I'm just saying that you shouldn't be fooled into thinking that this is actually reality and the camera just happened to be there when these people were doing what they normally do.

My takeaway is not horror at the idea of such atrocious behavior behind my back. Indeed, it's amazement that the economy and culture that is America can absorb and overcome all these outrages.

*Restaurant food: not what you think. Even in France.
If you’ve ever wondered why French classics such as a “moelleux au chocolat” or a “tarte tatin” tastes suspiciously the same in Paris restaurants, it’s probably because it is. About a third of French restaurants say they use industrial food, and Fasquelle and other officials fear declining standards at the nation’s 150,000 restaurants threaten a tourism industry that represents 7 percent of France’s $2.8 trillion economy.
“The odds are sadly good you’ll be eating a pre-prepared dish or two if you dine out at the low to mid-level of the Paris food chain,” said Alexander Lobrano, author of “Hungry for Paris” and former European Editor of Gourmet. “I fervently hope that a law with real teeth will be passed in France, since it would not only go a long way to preserving the country’s distinguished gastronomic reputation but also reward those chefs who work so hard to prepare ’real’ freshly cooked food from quality ingredients.” [More]
Does it really matter, anyway? If the consumer is unharmed and satisfied, doesn't that imply that our internal standards don't match up with our external pretenses?

Maybe life is more like pro-wresting than we think. At every level, we just decide to believe. More and more, truth has become subjective, and something we manipulate to achieve our desires.

Whatever, it seems to work.

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