anne_mikolay_120You've got to be kidding!

That's what I thought when I flipped the television dials and landed on a commercial for “Chia Obama,” the new “patriotic” Chia product.

“Now you can own a piece of Americana!” The television spokesman shouted at me. Express your patriotism! Display America's liberty, prosperity, and hope! Surely this was a comedy skit; I waited for Mad TV's Bobby Lee to appear on the screen. Was the viewer being punked? I laughed.

And then I stopped laughing. It wasn't Mad TV, or Saturday Night Live. It was a real commercial pushing a new, special edition Chia “pet” to commemorate the inauguration of our 44th president. There on the television were two busts of President Obama, one “Smiling Obama,” the other “Determined Obama,” both sprouting green grassy hair, and looking uncannily like Shrek. For approximately $18.00, plus shipping and handling, proud Americans can now own a questionable piece of Americana, “Chia Obama,” which includes a handmade planter, three seed packets, a drip tray, and instructions. The advertising copy says: Can you grow a “Chia Obama?” In the famous words of our president, “Yes, you can!”

An Obama opponent must have thought this one up! Perhaps a Republican, a member of the Obama “birther” movement, or an opponent of Obama's health care plan. Or perhaps it was Fox News Channel's Glenn Beck in a gesture of retaliation for lost sponsors after he publicly declared President Obama a racist. Who else but someone with an ax to grind with the present administration would design such an embarrassing caricature of our nation's president? I've seen Obama bobble heads, Malia and Sasha Cabbage Patch dolls, Hillary Clinton nut crackers, and countless Bill Clinton Halloween masks complete with cigar, but Chia Obama is the silliest presidential commemorative ever peddled to the American public. Is there anybody out there who seriously wants one of these things for something other than a gag gift? Joseph Enterprises, producers of Chia pets, must think the American public will buy absolutely anything. Why else would the company be pushing “Chia Obama?”

If you want a good laugh, go to youtube, search “Chia Obama,” and view the commercial. Or log onto www.chiaobama.com. Can you grow a “Chia Obama?” Yes, you can!

But why the heck would you want to?