15.Nov.2009 Review: The Clapper

1986.

“Top Gun” edged out “Crocodile Dundee” for tops at the box office.  The new television drama “L.A. Law” cleaned up at the Emmys.  Bill Buckner dashed the hopes and dreams of Boston Red Sox fans with a crucial fielding error that led to the Mets winning the World Series.  And, just over a hundred miles south of Shea Stadium, an impressionable 9-year-old boy saw this commercial for the first time:

Fast forward 23 years.  The elementary school child has grown into a man with the mentality (and, arguably, intelligence) of an impressionable 9-year-old boy.

Imagine the exuberance of this man-child at the prospect of scoring a free Clapper!!!

“Free” meaning no money out of pocket.  Of course, folks don’t just walk up to strangers on street corners and hand them Clappers… unless those strangers are extremely lucky sons of bitches.

No, my (yes, I am the aforementioned man-child.  I’m pretty sure that you had gathered that, but…. you know…. for clarification’s sake) Clapper was earned… by playing games and answering trivia questions at The Game Show Network website.  It’s a pretty sweet gig, in all honesty.  Answer a few trivia questions each day.  After a month or two, free Clapper.  Or gift cards.  Or charitable donation.  Or magazine subscription.

I figure I may as well pick up some free shit from GSN while waiting for the energy bar to refill on Mafia Wars.

So, earlier this week, the grandfather of contemporary as-seen-on-tv products was in our hands.  We waited until Friday night to hook it up.  Clappers, we correctly assumed, are much more engaging when you’re at least a six pack deep.

At first, we were having problems operating the Clapper.  The device is programmed to respond to noises at half-second intervals.  I had trouble with judging the appropriate length of pauses.  I have no rhythm.  Much like this guy:

After a few unsuccessful attempts, we were able to turn the lamp on.  Then off.  Then on.  Off again.  On again.  This repeated until we grew tired of our new toy… some four hours and two pairs of sore hands later.

Entertaining as it is, there are some negative aspects of the Clapper.  For instance, I’ve been nursing a cold for the past couple of weeks.   I wake up daily to brief but intense coughing fits.  This morning, as I cleared my airways, the light turned on.

Cough on!  (*hack* *hack*)  Cough off! (*hack* *wheeze*)

We may need to find an alternative way to gain the attention of our pets when they do something wrong.  Before, we could give warning claps (“Cooper!  Stop clawing the couch!” *clap* *clap*, or, “Winston!  Stop eating your own excrement!” *clap* *clap*).  Now, inadvertently powering on appliances is an unwanted by-product of scolding the animals…..which we have to do almost constantly… especially the doot-eating dog.

Lastly, when Jeff Carter scored a shorthanded goal midway through the third period to pull the Flyers within one, it looked like we had a strobe light in our living room.

Claponclapoffclaponclapoffclaponclapoff

Claponclapoffclaponclapoffclaponclapoff

Despite all its little foibles, I think the Clapper’s an absolute blast.

It’ll make you feel like a 9-year-old kid again.

Or, maybe I’m just a little too easily amused.

Where to Buy: I wasn’t able to find an official site.  The closest I came was  here

Price: ranges from $18.95 to $29.95  (0r, 11,250 Oodles)

Are you on the Game Show Network site collecting Oodles constantly? : No more than 15 minutes a day.  If I did, I wouldn’t have time to play a great multi-player version of Boggle here or answer multiple choice questions to help curb world hunger here.  Oh, yeah, and there’s Mafia Wars.

(Photo source: http://www.life.com)

Comment Pages

There are 2 Comments to "Review: The Clapper"

  • Deana says:

    hilarious!!! i too was a baby of the 80’s and loved that strange and fun “Clapper” commercial!!!

    Glad to hear it came to use for your flyers game!!!

  • Jeremy says:

    Hey, Deana!

    If Giroux would have scored on that shot that ju-u-u-u-st went wide, the Clapper may have malfunctioned due to overuse.

    I couldn’t have the television hooked up to the Clapper during sporting events… I just couldn’t.

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