FRITO-LAY: Thank you for calling Frito-Lay, this is Alice. How may I help you?
JOHN HARGRAVE: Hi. I was eating a bag of your Puffed Cheetos the other day, and I noticed that you say they are "dangerously cheesy."
JH: I have a six-year-old daughter, and I'm worried about her eating something dangerous.
FL: [Chuckle] That's, uh, that's an advertisement. Our marketing department thought it was catchy. Cheetos are not threatening, or dangerous, at all.
JH: Do they contain shards of glass?
FL: No. By "dangerously cheesy," we just mean they are very cheesy.
JH: Do Cheetos cause cancer?
FL: No. Rest assured, you have nothing to worry about.
JH: Will they explode in your mouth?
JH: So they don't explode with cheesy flavor?
FL: [Pause] Is there anything else I can help you with today?
JH: It's just that "dangerous" is such a dangerous-sounding word.
FL: Sir, it's just an advertisement.
JH: So you're advertising that your product is dangerous?
FL: No, no. If it was dangerous, the FDA wouldn't allow us to keep the product on the market. We follow all FDA regulations.
JH: Okay. You're absolutely sure your Cheetos are safe to eat?
FL: Yes sir.
JH: Even if my daughter is extremely allergic to cheese?
FL: OK, then, yeah. I wouldn't recommend you give her that product.
JH: One bite and she goes into anaphylactic shock. Do you know what that is?
FL: No. What is that?
JH: She can die in three hours if we don't get her to a hospital.
FL: OK, well this is a cheese product, ma'am. I recommend you don't give her that.
JH: So they are dangerous?
FL: They're not dangerous. [Flustered] They're not dangerous. If she's allergic to cheese, she could get sick from that. But they're not dangerous.
JH: I really wish you'd make up your mind. Your packaging says it's dangerous, then you tell me it's not, then you tell me it is.
FL: I never said it was dangerous. You're misleading the conversation. You just shouldn't give it to her if she's allergic to cheese. We have patients that are allergic to gluten. They shouldn't eat any of our products that contain gluten.
JH: It just seems like there's a little confusion over there at Frito-Lay on whether it's dangerous or not.
FL: No, it's not a dangerous product. If it was dangerous, it wouldn't be sold to consumers.
JH: Well, I would also think it wouldn't say the word "dangerous" on the front.
FL: It's, it's ... it's all advertisement. It's just another way of saying they're extremely cheesy.
JH: You wouldn't say "fatally cheesy." Because people might think that you'd die.
FL: Okay, I'll pass all this along to our marketing department.
JH: I'd appreciate that. I mean, why not just call them "deadly cheesy"?
FL: Sir, I understand this is a problem FOR YOU. I will be sure to pass your comments along.
JH: "Asphyxiatingly cheesy"?
FL: There's nothing I can do on my end as far as you feeling that way. But I'll be sure to document this call. Thank you for calling Frito-Lay!
JH: Hang on Alice. One second. I've got another call coming in. Can you hang on?
[I put down the phone for approximately two minutes, and Alice patiently waits]
JH: I'm sorry, that was the doctor on the other line. It was the allergist. We just got my daughter's allergy tests back, and good news. She's not allergic to cheese after all.
FL: Okay. Well then, it's up to you whether you want to give the product to her or not.
JH: Great, so they're not dangerous?
JH: He said she was allergic to something called gluten?
FL: OK. [At the end of her rope] OK. All right, well, you may not want to give this product to her then.
JH: You're really flip-flopping on me here, Alice.
FL: I'll be sure to pass your comments along. Thank you for calling Frito-Lay, and you have a good day. [Hangs up on me]