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Digging For Cereal Prizes

September 10th, 2013 Leave a comment Go to comments

I’m not sure when this practice started, but it has to stop.  Right.  Now.

What I’m all up in arms about is the fact that cereal companies are getting into the habit of placing their prizes inside of the cereal boxes, but packaged and placed along side the interior cereal bag.  This, IMHO, completely strips away the thrill of digging into the cereal itself and hunting for the elusive toy.

We all had our own special ways of extracting the prize from inside a freshly opened box of cereal.  As a child I preferred the “push in against the side to create a hand space, then dig in from the bottom” method.  Others opted for the less refined but more sophisticated “wait until the prize falls out naturally” approach.  If you weren’t hip to either technique you could find a large bowl and dump the entire contents and simply pick out the prize.  This last approach was deemed the cowards way of obtaining that coveted prize, and was considered bad form around our household ;-)

But I guess this is all becoming moot, with Kellogg’s now pre-separating the prize from the cereal itself, these and other self-taught prize extracting techniques might go the way of Pound Puppies, Speak & Spells, and “flesh” colored crayons.  We’re denying future generations of children by not allowing them the pleasure of digging deep into a box Froot Loops, bits and pieces of cereal oozing out of the box as they stare at the ceiling in total concentration, hoping to feel their way to the prize that looked so cool printed on the outside of the box.

*Sigh*  It’s an example of another small of piece of my childhood dying by carefully measured increments.

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  1. May 27th, 2009 at 14:28 | #1

    I preferred to just dump the whole carton out and then sift through the cereal. I don’t think my mother appreciated that approach. Destroying a perfectly good box of cereal for a 25 cent toy did not make anyone happy.

  2. September 10th, 2013 at 01:55 | #2

    There were no toys in cereal in my day but I remember young son plunging his fist inside the packet and bringing out the latest cheapo gift. The look of joy on his face was good to see. Now that we’re in a sue-able society I guess the manufacturers have to be extra cautious. Sad.

  3. September 10th, 2013 at 06:42 | #3

    “We’re denying future generations of children by not allowing them the pleasure of digging deep into a box….”

    AMEN! Again, it’s that ‘instant gratification-world’ we live in now.

    God, I recall how happy and excited I would get, opening a fresh box of cereal and eagerly anticipating the prize inside. In fact, I can remember that excitement right now as I type this, like it was yesterday.

    “I preferred the “push in against the side to create a hand space, then dig in from the bottom” method. ”

    Meeeeeee too! And I would dig and dig until I felt something and then YANK it out.

    Oh how fun!!!

    Great post, buddy! Brought back super memories :)

  4. September 10th, 2013 at 15:01 | #4

    Well, THAT’S no good!! Where’s the fun in that? I suppose it’s the litigation thing again, isn’t it? You can’t have the remote possibility of someone tipping it out into there bowl and failing to see it, can you? I mean they might mistake it for a cornflake and try to eat it and then breathe it in and choke. It is practically indistinguishable from a cornflake or a froot loop, after all!

    Good grief.

    By the way, you forgot the fourth method. Open up the cereal box and the inner packet, then carefully shake with the box slightly tilted and the prize rises gently to the top!

  5. September 10th, 2013 at 22:38 | #5

    Jen :

    I preferred to just dump the whole carton out and then sift through the cereal. I don’t think my mother appreciated that approach. Destroying a perfectly good box of cereal for a 25 cent toy did not make anyone happy.

    It doesn’t matter that the toy costs only 25 cents. It’s a matter of pride that you got it! Heh…

  6. September 10th, 2013 at 22:40 | #6

    Valerie :

    There were no toys in cereal in my day but I remember young son plunging his fist inside the packet and bringing out the latest cheapo gift. The look of joy on his face was good to see. Now that we’re in a sue-able society I guess the manufacturers have to be extra cautious. Sad.

    Yes, I believe you’re right. It’s all about CYA, which leads to packaging toys separately from the cereal. I’m just waiting for the day when they put a warning on the box proclaiming “Caution! Toy inside!” :-(

  7. September 10th, 2013 at 22:41 | #7

    Ron :

    “We’re denying future generations of children by not allowing them the pleasure of digging deep into a box….”

    AMEN! Again, it’s that ‘instant gratification-world’ we live in now.

    God, I recall how happy and excited I would get, opening a fresh box of cereal and eagerly anticipating the prize inside. In fact, I can remember that excitement right now as I type this, like it was yesterday.

    “I preferred the “push in against the side to create a hand space, then dig in from the bottom” method. ”

    Meeeeeee too! And I would dig and dig until I felt something and then YANK it out.

    Oh how fun!!!

    Great post, buddy! Brought back super memories :)

    *Exactly*! As soon as my grubby mitts wrapped around the toy in question I too pulled it out, spilling cereal all over the kitchen. I didn’t care. Because back in the day the toys were actually cool and fun.

  8. September 10th, 2013 at 22:42 | #8

    Jay from The Depp Effect :

    Well, THAT’S no good!! Where’s the fun in that? I suppose it’s the litigation thing again, isn’t it? You can’t have the remote possibility of someone tipping it out into there bowl and failing to see it, can you? I mean they might mistake it for a cornflake and try to eat it and then breathe it in and choke. It is practically indistinguishable from a cornflake or a froot loop, after all!

    Good grief.

    By the way, you forgot the fourth method. Open up the cereal box and the inner packet, then carefully shake with the box slightly tilted and the prize rises gently to the top!

    That, my friend, is the equivalent to a computer hack. You were one of those bright kids, weren’t you? ;-) Heh…way to think outside (or is it inside?) the box!

  9. jenny_o
    jenny_o
    September 11th, 2013 at 10:19 | #9

    Hah! I’m with Jay on the litigation effect! I can’t remember ever getting stuff in cereal but my kids did, and it was a constant war about who was going to get it :( But, hey, I remember getting stuff in laundry detergent! Woo-hoo!

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