A Mystery Package from Nestle

A mysterious package marked “Top AFL Secret” arrived at my doorstep this afternoon. Could Nestlé have mistaken me for Tom Cruise or David Duchovny?

The red label made the parcel even more intriguing. What secret does it hold? Will it self-destruct in 5 minutes?

The truth is in there. Love the simple yet eye-catching packaging that came with a balloon floating above the box.

There’s even a docket customized with my photo taken during Songkran in April this year! How very apt that this pic was chosen to fit the secret spy/agent theme. This shows the effort undertaken by the sender in researching my background.

But the photo was only a prelude to the amount of trouble Nestlé went through to know the person they are sending the package to. I was so tickled and amused by the Bio section that I was laughing from beginning to end. This is the first time I received something from a brandowner with this level of creativity and thoughtfulness to launch a campaign. By going the extra mile to know its customers, no wonder Nestlé is at the top of the food chain.

*Drum roll…* Ta-da! The contents inside the box. It was another surprise as I was expecting the parcel to be a food hamper of the company’s household brandnames such Kit Kat, Milo, NESCAFE and Maggi noodles among others. But no! It’s a call for a holistic approach to health and nutrition through the T.A.G. principle in order to enjoy an Appetite for Life (AFL).

Enjoy an Appetite for Life (love the double meaning in the phrase) is Nestlé’s latest campaign to reinforce its promise to deliver good food and a good life to Singaporeans by reminding us that sound nutrition, an active lifestyle and connecting with people around us are tenets to great health and overall wellness.

The 3 items in the box each represented the T.A.G. principle to enduring health. ‘T’ is for Togetherness where sharing a good meal or snack with friends and love ones strengthens our communal bonds and social ties. The t-shirt sent to me were size ‘S’ instead of the often over-sized ‘M’ or worst still, ‘L’ sizes that I’ve been given for events. Either my preference for tight tees is very obvious or Nestlé and its PR company once again showed how meticulous they are in knowing their target audience.

‘A’ is for Activity to keep the body and mind in good shape through exercise and continuous learning. Based on my ‘Agent Profile’, I’ve been assigned the mission of completing an activity, which is to spend an adrenalin-pumping day at Adventure Cove Waterpark! Nestlé must’ve known that I haven’t been to this theme park and marked this as my mission. Fantastic!

‘G’ is for Goodness and a shoutout to eat well to ensure we get adequate nutrients. Eating well is more than just about having fresh, nourishing food but eating everything in moderation. There is no such thing as a good or bad food but a good or bad diet! It is okay to indulge in an occasional chocolate or ice-cream, but balance is the key.

Not that I’m a big-time blogger or social media blockbuster but amongst the campaign launches I’ve had the privilege to be included in so far, ‘Appetite for Life‘ has to be one of the most interesting and fun in terms of concept, mechanisms, copywriting and execution. I think it’s a great case study in marketing via social media engagement.

Normally, I prefer not to announce commercial promotions on this blog because I would like to keep things I talk about heartfelt and grounded in direct personal experiences. Afterall, this blog is not a classifieds listing. But I really enjoyed and appreciate the creativity and attention to details in this marketing exercise. So here’s what the good folks at Nestlé has in store for Singapore netizens and shoppers these coming months…

GIVE-A-BASKET, SURPRISE GOODIES & PREMIUM GIFTS!

In conjunction with Appetite for Life, Nestlé has launched a ‘Give-a-basket‘ campaign where you can send colleagues, friends, love ones and even strangers virtual baskets of Togetherness, Activity, or Goodness and you or your sendee get to win a real basket packed with Nestlé products weekly!

To take part, simply LIKE Nestlé Singapore Facebook page and click on ‘Appetite for Life’ to start sending baskets of delights from now till 31 October 2013!

What’s more, in the month of June 2013, shoppers of Nestlé products at Giant or Sheng Siong outlets islandwide stand to win Nestlé goodies baskets at any time of the day!

And from now till July 2013, every S$25 purchase of Nestlé products at NTUC FairPrice, Cold Storage, Giant and Sheng Siong entitles shoppers to exclusive premium gifts such as food warmers and glass bowl sets.

If there is any good reason to enjoy an Appetite for Life, the time is now!

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Day 365 : Sexpressionists

I almost didn’t recognise them with their clothes on. LOL. It was surreal to chance upon Alvin and Vivian in front of Lot 10, Kuala Lumpur. The infamous famous Malaysian couple was interviewing people on the street about sex for an upcoming documentary on Alvivi Youtube channel.

Having gone through the whole media frenzy about their now defunct sex blog, Sumptuous Erotica, it’s great to see that they treat the debacle and critics as water off a fduck’s bareback. Then again, if one dares to post personal nude photos, genitalia close-ups and love-making videos in a public blog for all to see, especially in this conservative part of the world, what else is there that one could not stand up to? This couple has balls!

Losing his prestigious ASEAN scholarship to read law at the National University of Singapore (NUS), Alvin and Vivian are now back in Kuala Lumpur and living together. They tried to pitch a reality show about sex in Asia but of course, no studios dared to take them on and wanted them to steer away from the whole sex thing if collaborations are to be considered. Kinda like telling McDonald’s to not sell hamburgers because they are not health food. But Alvivi decided not to receive media castration and armed with their own camera and tripod, set up an interview point at the busiest shopping district in Kuala Lumpur, and got people thinking about their views about sex.

They asked if I would like to be interviewed but I was in a hurry to collect my lugguage from the hotel before heading to the airport. Besides, I won’t have much to say about sex for I hardly have any! My cobwebs are legendary amongst friends.

In the States, Sex and the City is a huge hit, in Asia, it got the couple into big shit. Meeting them was a sexciting surprise as I felt like I know them already from their nude photos and headlining news stories. Alvivi came across as sincere and personable in our brief chat and I think their self-confidence and guts are uber sexy!

Whatever the future holds for Alvin and Vivian, I wish them well and may they have a rewarding life together. Lights, camera, mirror, shoot and shoot! 😉

Day 334 : Gangnome Style!


Christmas carols have invaded our malls for a fortnight now and everywhere I looked, shades of the coming yuletide season shimmered, glittered and glowed. Everywhere. But my office.

That’s until my colleagues discovered these cute fold-it-yourself paper gnome from 3 Eyed Bear, a creative website that shares innovative handicraft paper creatures for free. Besides this gnome, called The Snorfs, there are many other kawaii-until-can-die model designs. They are really cool and relatively easy to make… just click on the design, print, cut, fold and glue.

So my colleagues made a bunch of them to infect the office with some Christmas cheer and I sneaked a photo before they got scattered around the different departments.

Christmas is celebrated to commemorate the birth of Jesus although Christian purists question the legitimacy of 25 Dec as the day He was born and in the same breath, decry Santa Claus’  pagan DNA.

But to me, Christmas is really a celebration about YOU… about us. The reason we have a date to celebrate the birth of Jesus is because God so loved us that He gave His only Son to redeem our sins. It is for us that Christ was born. It is for you that He came.

Since we are the reason for the sleigh bells to be ringing and Rudolf to get a red nose, it makes good sense for Christmas to be about celebrating the people in our lives as much as in remembrance of the One who came for our lives.

This way, it doesn’t matter if one is Christian or non-Christian for you are worth celebrating because someone loves you. Even if it feels like no one on this earth gives a sh*t about you, there is the One who sacrificed His Son 😀

Day 330 : Freez-zard

The clock on my elongated wall-desk told me it’s 9.30am when I woke up. It’s a Sunday. I loathe it that I cannot go back to sleep after I have woken. Unless I’m dead drunk the previous night, I lack the ability to sleep in on a weekend.

Tired of fighting wakefulness with cooling the room, soft music, and lavender oil in the aromatherapy burner, I dragged my dreary ass to the bathroom. What shall I do today? Okay, let’s cook a soup, lotus root soup. Sounds good. Let’s see what ingredients we have in the fridge and what I need to go market for. I converesed in my head as I brushed my teeth.

After splashing away the slumber, I proceeded to the kitchen and opened the refrigerator. What I saw grossed and froze me…

Wahbiang! There’s a dead lizard in my fridge… Or is it drunk from the stash of booze huh? So skin-crawlingly gross!

Wahlau… at a loss for what to do. Better take some photos with my Casio Exilim ZR200 first as I’ve not encountered something like this before. How did this crawlie get in there? So cham… become 冰冻僵尸.

After getting all CSI with the unfortunate bugger at the location of death, I placed it on a tissue paper to take some more shots before wrapping its body in it. But as I was shooting, I noticed that the lizard twitched! Was it coming back as a zombie??

I recalled from some National Geographic docu that cold-blooded mammals such as frogs, lizards and geckos can sometimes halt their metabolism during winter and reanimate in spring. So I warmed it up with my hands.

Ta-da! The Nat Geo theory was right! It defrosted and came back to life.

This species is the Four-Clawed Gecko commonly found in homes. As its name suggests, the gecko has four digits on its front limbs, but five on its hind legs. The gecko can grow up to 12cm in length and is one of those vocal ones that can make pretty loud noises.

To help it regain mobility quicker, I stroked it for some time with my finger to accelerate its blood flow. It seemed really comfortable with me. I’ve not observed a live gecko so intimately before as they are usually high up on the ceiling and nimble on escaping capture.

I think the Four-Clawed Gecko looked so beautiful and especially cute when it licks its snout with its little tongue. So tempted was I to keep it as a pet but decided against the idea as I don’t want to end up killing this fragile thing from lack of knowledge about its care.

After it has fully recovered, I freed it by the stairwell outside my apartment. What was yuck at first sight quickly turned into a really lovely close encounter of the weird kind.

I hope it will visit me again… and stay out of the fridge this time!

Day 325 : Catching Paradise

What a party the clouds are having today! Joining my many Facebook friends who turn into errant MET services with their photos of glorious sunrise / sunset / cloud formation on days such as this, I took a shot too of the cotton parade.

I wanted to use the shot for today’s photo-of-the-day but problem was, I already had quite a few of such photos in the FUNicating series. A lamp post silhouetted against a blue sky can be visually arresting but I had a hard time connecting with it meaningfully.

The notion of ‘sea of clouds’ spoke very strongly to me as I looked at this shot so I thought, to make things different, how about I spin it around and let it be where a sea should be… under the feet. As soon as I rotated the photo 180 degress, suddenly, the lamp post resembled a hook to me… a fishing hook… about to dip into the sea of clouds to fish for something. For angels? For god? For loved ones? For hope? For dreams?

How about all of the above?

So I decided it should fish for heaven as these things reside in there right? When you hooked heaven, you’ve caught yourself a peace of paradise!

The original image. I was going to call it “Your light is not needed yet”.

Day 205 : Lollipop for a Monday

Mondays are like having that time of the month every week. Seemingly sucking on a cousin to the Torch Ginger plant, it’s extraordinary that a snail climbs so high. Hopefully it’s an omen that things will be looking up this week. Doesn’t it look like the snail is enjoying itself tremendously on the stick?

How about chasing the Monday blues away with some red hot action? Have a suckyoulearnt Monday 🙂

Day 166 : Eroticart

WARNING : THIS POST CONTAINS CONTENT OF A SEXUAL NATURE AND NOT MEANT FOR ANYONE WHO HAS NOT MET HIS/HER GENITALIA. THE AUTHOR WILL NOT BE HELD RESPONSIBLE FOR YOUR ACTIONS AS A RESULT OF VIEWING THE IMAGES HERE. FOR ADULT MINDS ONLY PLEASE.

Few things have the ability to make me blush but an accidental encounter with a recent issue of IdN magazine had me turning beetroot. I am surprise our Singapore board of censors are finally showing signs of repentence by allowing issue v19n2 (Visual Orgasm) of IdN to reach our magazine racks. I think our anti-nation building birthrate is the result of our all-too-successful attempt at keeping Singapore sterile between the thighs and minds that the authorities eventually realised we need nationwide sex ed-ttraction to turn on friskiness again.

But artistic eroticism should not be viewed in the same blood-pumping vein as pornography. Creators of the works would have us believe it’s an interpretation and reflection of our world through the medium of genitalia. For after all, who can demounce, totally, Sigmund Freud’s observation that many motivations behind human behaviours are actively or remotely seeded by sex?

The adage that sex sells is the first commandment of every marketer’s bible notwithstanding, puritans would fight to death this abomination of morality. I used to be one of those who refuses to relegate myself to the truth that basic human sexual instinct drives many of our actions and thoughts.  “There’s more to life than sex,” used to be my snub-line at those sex-crazed types. Yes, there is more to life, such as presidency, golf, teaching, being a civil defence chief, celebrity, etc.

So in recognition and celebration of the power that human sexuality (often a subset of love) wields, here are some erotic art I stumbled upon by artists Jamie McCartney and Joseph Tailor that had me secretly flipping the pages of the IdN’s Visual Orgasm…

Titled ‘100’, the piece is dubbed the Great Wall of Erections with the artist taking casts of 100 men in their full glory. I wonder what the artist had to do to get this standing ovation of a piece.

The Great Wall of Vagina is a series of vaginal casts taken of hundreds of woman. It’s a library of the clit.

Hard as an Armadildo. LOL. Care for a ride?

The real Pussy Cat.

Uh-oh… controversial image here… but I think this image reminds us of the humanity of the person portrayed here.

All images are gotten from IdN’s website and here’s a video with artist Jamie McCartney talking about the inspiration and message behind his works using sex as a medium.

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