by Jaclyn Moonbeam, DP Occupy Wall Street Correspondent
Tuesday, November 15th, 2011,
(NEW YORK) —When it comes to drumming up revenue to keep their movement alive, perhaps their 2012 “Occupy Wall Street Scratch-n-Sniff Calendars” were not such a good idea after all, according to the group's leaders Monday.
In increasing need of money for food, clothes and generators, Occupy Wall Street demonstrators compiled a “scratch-n-sniff” calendar for 2012, which the group has been attempting to sell since late October. However, according to sources, “scratching and sniffing” Occupy Wall Street may not be the quaint, aromatic holiday gift consumers should clamor for after all. The makeshift entrepreneurial attempt of the motley group has fetched them all of 23 sales nationwide since October 25th, when “Scratch-n-Sniff Occupy Wall Street” calendars first appeared for sale ($10 each) outside Zuccotti Park in lower Manhattan.
In their stocks remain nearly a quarter of a million calendars to be sold. And given their dismal sales so far, the prospects of the movement recouping the money it took to mass produce “Scratch-n-Sniff Occupy Wall Street 2012,” let alone generate enough profit (wait, did we say profit?!) to help fund Occupy encampments around the nation, does not look promising, say organizers.
“Needless to say, our 2012 calendars allowing people to ‘scratch-n-sniff’ our movement may not be the hotcake success we thought they would be,” said Senia Barragan, one of the chief organizers of New York’s Occupy movement.
Demonstrators in a total of twelve U.S. cities have tried to sell the 2012 Occupy scratch-n-sniff calendars, according to movement leaders. And in each participating city, from Atlanta to Oakland, to Chicago, to Seattle, an average of one out of every 1000 calendars has sold. Said Jaki Sinclair, chief organizer for Occupy Atlanta to Duh Progressive Monday, “We got our shipment of scratch-n-sniff calendars two weeks ago. Ten-thousand, total. And we’ve sold about five…no, wait, six! Which means we’re still left with 9,999. …Hey, returns: they’re a bitch!”
The overall problem, according to the few members of the general public who have bought the calendars, is that they simply are the most horrendous things any living creature on Earth could ever dare to inhale —ever—, producing odors so awful that a Hazardous Material crew was mistakenly summoned to Occupy Seattle last Friday after a purchaser of one of the calendars scratched and sniffed January in public.
“It was the worst thing I have experienced since…well, birth,” said Marlene Thompson, 45, who innocently paid the $10 for the calendar last Friday outside Cal Anderson Park in Seattle, prompting the HazMat crew’s response. Speaking from her hospital bed where she is recovering from the encounter, Thompson, a social worker and lifelong liberal Democrat who supported the movement, said she is having a tough time not reevaluating her opinion of the group since “sniffing its soul” last Friday.
“I saw these kids with their tents and their posters and their passion, and my heart went out to them,” said Thompson to Duh Progressive Monday. “And I thought it was cute they were trying to support themselves with these ‘scratch-n-sniff’ calendars. It really was. Then I actually bought one and smelled it –Jesus (expletive) Christ!”
Produced at great effort and cost to Occupy organizers around the country, the calendars feature the most endearing photos from the now weeks-long movement for each month next year. When scratched, the photos omit odors specific to them and of Occupy Wall Street in general. January 2012, for instance, features a young, long-haired gentleman in the midst of embracing a New York City police officer during one of the group’s routine “hug-a-thons” with authorities. It smells like halitosis, 11-year-old Birkenstocks, stolen clove cigarettes, and bleeding acne pustules, with a subtle whaff of indiscriminate nihilism and a hint of a complete ignorance of human nature.
NO RESPECT: “Occupiers” Ponder Reason for Scratch-n-Sniff Calendars’ Failure
According to a disappointed Barragan Monday, “We were trying to bring more people into our movement with these calendars. We wanted to give those who couldn’t join us that ‘Occupy look and feel,’ you know? Now everyone is complaining about how bad they smell, when to us, each month not only smells beautiful, but is true to the scene it depicts. We thought these (calendars) would be a hit. ...You just never know what the general public will relinquish its accustomed ignorance to and embrace. We might just have to fall back on our charming sense of selflessness and humble personalities.”
Rap star Kanye West, who agreed to appear for Scratch-n-Sniff’s April 2012, after a fee of $50,000, said he also did not know why the group he has supported so strongly for a half-hour one day has not had the success they expected with their greatest marketing ploy to date. Said West to reporters on his private jet Sunday, “It’s like, you know, people don’t know when they got something good going. These folks occupying Wall Street need support; they’re going broke and have come up with a creative way to support themselves. And it’s a shame their best attempt ain’t selling like they thought it would. I feel for ‘em, really.”
When axed by the Associated Press if he had purchased one of the Occupy Scratch-n-Sniff 2012 calendars himself, West said, “Wha..? Buy a..? Shit! I ain’t buying that stinkin’, rank-ass shit! Have any y’all smelled them?! —Jesus (expletive) Christ!”
Meanwhile, West’s month of April, according to Occupy calendar sellers, proudly exudes the aroma of a 1000-dollar bottle of designer cologne from the United Arab Emirates, combined with a distinct infusion of popularly overlooked hypocrisy, all atop of a dash of fleeting cause célèbre and the main bathroom in documentary film maker Michael Moore’s 2-million-dollar estate on Torch Lake, Michigan.
Cheryl Langer, who aapears in the photo for February 2012, adorably wrapped in a sleeping bag with an unknown (both to calendar producers and herself) shirtless gentleman, said even she, while still supportive of her movement’s efforts to raise funds for itself, did not “exactly relish” the aroma of “Occupy Wall Street Scratch-n-Sniff 2012”.
“It’s a good way to lose weight, I’ll give it that,” said Langer to Duh Progressive Monday, regarding the calendars’ smell. “Each month is so ‘unique’ in its odor, anything you may have eaten within the last few hours..? Don’t worry, you won’t be digesting it. …Scratch and sniff any month of the calendar and you’ll become an immediate involuntary bulimic. Trust me.”
February 2012, coincidentally boasts an exquisite blend for the Month of Romance, radiating an ethereal whiff of gang rape, some aftertones of scabies, Hepatitis C, dead insects, and a discrete hint of “Don't touch me! No, please! Stop!” —all of the smells that have grown near and dear to Occupiers’ hearts over the last several weeks.
With participants such as Langer even admitting failure of their largest and most contradictory attempt yet at making big business out of their anti-big business theme, the “Occupy” movement is finding itself depressingly poorer, colder, hungrier, and more desperate than ever to sustain itself.
Lamented top Manhattan organizer and admittedly demoralized Senia Barragan Monday, “Our one attempt at capitalizing on our anti-capitalist movement has failed. Just more proof no one can make it in this country. It’s just not fair.”
Added Barragan when asked if she was enjoying her scratch-n-sniff calendar, “Wha..? Me? –have one of those things? I ain’t buying that stinkin’, rank-ass shit! Have any y’all smelled them?! —Jesus (expletive) Christ!”