Recently, I fell prey to a colon cleanse scam. This isn’t the first thing I’d want to admit to, but this blog is pseudonymous, so I’ll spin a yarn.

Now there are plenty of resources—most obviously a Google search—which would have revealed Bromalite pills to be a scam. But in the headrush of an impulse buy, I suppose even the best of us can be shortsighted. And I ain’t the best of us.

Many have complained about this company. Still, one more blog post detailing the fraud will only better the consumer world. So here’s the story:

I was reading the Free Press, when I noticed an ad for a colon cleanse “review board.” This board studied the effects of many cleansing products on the market and rated them, scientifically. I clicked on the ad and arrived at their site. In their own words:

“Our firm is a watch dog group in the health products industry located in Michigan.”

Oh, I thought, in Michigan. I live in Michigango on, I said with my mouse.

On their webpage, there were three products rated. I chose the second one, Bromalite, and clicked on it, taking me to their page.

If I paid only five bucks for shipping and handling, they would rush me a free trial of Bromalite, which guarantees to push fifteen pounds of waste out of you in three days. 

So I gave them my debit card number. 

Great fool was I.

Now. Before you buy this crap, consider what I have found:

At the bottom of their webpage, where a terms of use contract exists on every website you visit, there is a link to the actual terms of your agreement. That is, the terms you agree to when you order your pay-for-shipping-only bottle of pills. That link reveals a rather comprehensive—albeit incomprehensible—contract, which is packed to the gills with legal jargon and bullshit, allowing them to charge you $69.95 if you fail to cancel your “subscription” within twelve days of placing your order. After another month, they bill you again.  

I only found out about this after they sent me the second bottle, whereupon I drove straight to my credit union to cancel my card. 

There, I found that I could contest these sorts of things. Visa would deal with the company and replace the money in my account until they judged that the company’s withdrawal as unlawful. The lady in account services showed me that Bromalite had tried to withdraw $69.95 the day I ordered their product. That is not what they said they would do. Rather, they would bill me the full cost only after my twelve-day free trial period had ended. 

Their first try didn’t work. Only the $5.00 I agreed to pay went through. However, I found that they had successfully withdrawn $69.95 not once but twice on later dates. This was also in violation of their own terms that stated they would wait 30 days to bill you again. 

If Bromalite had stuck to the arrangement, I might not have any legal rights to my money. The contract certainly stipulates so. But they got greedy.

All is still in the subjunctive as I await Visa’s judgment. In the meantime, I have looked into the whole racket. 

The colon review board is merely a deceptive advertisement. Nothing of the sort exists and certainly not in Michigan. Doubtless, your IP address dictates where the make-believe watchdog organization exists. 

Additionally, the three, reviewed and ostensibly separate brands all operate on the same basic swindle. The logos of CNN, Fox News, and other “as-seen-ons” litter each website. Of course, the ads never tell you at what time or on what program their products were featured; and if you’ve watched enough late night television, you will have seen all manner of ludicrous shit pedaled.  

On top of all that, I’m pretty sure the pills don’t even work. At any rate, I’m afraid to take them. They sit  on my dresser as a small monument to my own gullibility.

But “The large print giveth and the small print taketh away,” to quote the good Mr. Waits.

More on small print…

Lately, I have been sweating a lot, so I decided to try a different antiperspirant. At the store, suddenly “clinical strength” antiperspirant is available to the prescription-less masses. (Oh boy, oh boy)

The Old Spice clinical strength comes in a cardboard box, unlike regular sticks, and each unit costs $8.00. The boxes could hold four sticks of regular deodorant, but the product itself weighs only 1.7 oz.

The active ingredient in the “clinical strength” is Aluminum Zirconium Tetrahyrdrex Gly 20% (anhydrous).

As I soon discovered, it’s the same damn ingredient as any in antiperspirant. In fact, Arm and Hammer makes a pleasant smelling antiperspirant containing that ingredient at a 19% mixture, weighing 2.8 oz., and priced at $2.18. All it lacked was a large sexy box. 

Don’t fall for this clinical strength fandangle. Just stick with your regular stick.

As Bob Dylan sings in his one good song on Knocked Out Loaded, “Brownsville Girl”:

“Even the swap meets around here are getting corrupt.”