Mother did her darnedest to teach me how to package and present ideas, concepts, and myself to the world at large. Decades later, I can still package my person in such a way that perceived imperfections are minimized. I know to present good news first and bad news in the best light possible.

Others could have benefited from her instruction. I am thinking of the geniuses that shrink-wrap eye shadow make-up pencils in heavy plastic. Peering closely, you can see a stripe of dashes that seem to imply you could zip it open along those lines. But you can’t—not even when you shred your (non-existent) fingernails trying to tear along the dashed line will the plastic costing split apart. I resort to Exacto blades and curses. Fortunately, eyeliner and eyeshadow pencils last a very long time, so I don’t have to deal with this too often.

There are other packages with not only shrink-wrap the cap, but once the cap is finally off, you find another barrier such as a foil or foam sealer lid. These are easier to remove. Not neater, but easier.

I bet there is a special place in hell for the developers of the blister-pack style of packaging and if there isn’t, there should be! I refer here to the sadistic merchants of migraine nostrums. How mean is it to be whimpering in pain and nausea, or weakened by non-stop sneezing and coughing, only to discover that relief is secured within a hermetically-sealed blister pack? When you finally manage to peel away the foil backing, poke through the paper backing under the foil (with non-existent fingernails in my case), then extract the pill/capsule, only to have it fly through the air, bounce off the counter top and roll under the cabinet before coming to rest within an aged dust bunny.

There is but one company that flies in the face of this practice. Some brilliant person realized that if the plastic part of the blister pack was lightly textured, the covering paper and aluminum layers come off more easily. AND, if between each dose area they left an area unsealed with perforations, that allowed for a clean ‘lip’ to grab and peel back, exposing the pill becomes an easy matter.

If I could find out who designed the Generic Alendronate Sodium (generic equivalent of Fosamax for bone loss) packaging, I would tout their genius to the world. I would tell the other pharmaceutical companies, “Look! THIS is how you do it!” and urge them to pay this person a fortune so they, too, can reap the benefits of customer satisfaction. It is the Mac of the prescription delivery world because It. Just. Works.

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