The Best of Intentions
So, as some of you already know, I gave up smoking when I went back to the USA last month. I really, really enjoy smoking, but it’s a young man’s game and at 50, it was catching up with me – shortness of breath at the gym, less endurance, perpetual cough and all the other fun stuff that plays out over 30 years of voluntarily sucking down arsenic-laced carcinogens.
So, since I am not smoking anymore, I have been trying to continue to “flip the script” and try to get healthier. Part of that well-intentioned endeavor includes trying to eat more nourishing food and less processed/sugary garbage. You can’t turn back the hands of time but you can try to make them pummel you down with less ferocity. To that end, I have resumed my usual Philippines routine of salads (thank you Daro Market!), lean chicken and fish and assorted vegetables. And since Lyn moved in, she’s been cooking up a storm and trying to accommodate my desire for less fats, salt and sugars.
Enter the Nutribullet
A few weeks ago, an amigo noted that they were selling Nutribullets at Lee Plaza. He also said that he was going to get me one for my 51st birthday but squashed that idea once he realized that they were fake (counterfeit). Now, for those who don’t know (like me at the time), Nutribullets are powerful little blenders that are designed around transforming nuts, fibrous greens and tough fruits into palatable and nutritious smoothies. They’ve been running the ads for a while (As Seen on TV!!), and I can remember seeing them for years on the TV back in the United States (where a lot of people are now fat…..).
Even though I was told they were fake, I was still intrigued. Lyn and I mounted up on the Click (PLEASE try not to get the visual on that…) and blasted down to Lee Plaza. The table where they were presenting the Nutribullets was right outside the Lee enterance, and having done a bit of research on counterfeit Nutribullets, I was able to verify that these were indeed clones.
Knowingly selling fake or counterfeit goods in the Philippines is a crime – it’s actually a violation of Republic Act 8293 which has something to do with protecting intellectual property. Given the amount of counterfeit crap that one encounters in the Philippines, however, it doesn’t seem that too many companies are worried about it. During my time here I have run across counterfeit iPhones, cigarettes, audio gear, clothes, sunglasses, sneakers…. You name it, and someone is cloning/faking it. For their part, Lee Plaza seems to have taken the safe route in order to skirt the law – They were not selling the fake Nutribullets directly and had leased out the table to a sketchy-sounding outfit from Cagayan de Oro, Mindanao, who assured me that these were real Nutribullets and came with a one-year warranty.
Anyhoo, to make a long story short (too late!), after discovering that the fake Nutribullets at Lee Plaza were 3,900 pesos (about $77 USD), I returned home and checked Lazada.com. Once logged on, I discovered that I could get what appeared to be the same exact “Nutribullet” for a bit over 2,000 pesos. Realizing that EVERY Nutribullet listed out on Lazada was fake, I took the plunge and ordered the cheapest one. My rationalization was that although I knew it was counterfeit and would likely explode, I also realized that Lazada has their own seven day money back guarantee, so if the Bullet detonated in my mug, I could always send it back.
The Proof is in the Pudding
My “900 Watt Nutribullet Pro” arrived four days later. After doing a little video on the unboxing in which I noted some of the It’s-Fake giveaways, I put the Nutribullet to the test and mixed up quite a few shakes. Since getting it, I have used it about ten times, grinding up kale, spinach, chick peas, apples, bananas, malunggay leaves and basically anything else that I can find around the house that might possibly be healthy. The Bullet clone has handled everything I have thrown at it thus far, and to this point, I have no real complaints. Like the RUSI Yamaha Mio clone I once had, however, time will tell. And until that point, I will always try to turn my face away while turning the Nutribullet on in order to avoid any plastic shrapnel that might occur from a sudden explosion.
Lyn and I enjoyed doing the video and we injected a bit of humor into it. I have always maintained that comedy is based on tragedy, and nothing is more tragic than ourselves.
Have you had experience with counterfeit goods in the Philippines? Leave your story in the comment section below.
And until next time, my fellow dreamers, never forget: Caveat emptor!!