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December 1, 2009

Top 5 Obama Merchandise

1 - The “Barock”

Pet rocks were one fad no one ever expected to make a comeback. But Obama’s marketability and the obvious pun waiting to be exploited inspired one company to try. These “real river rocks” feature Obama’s profile and are marketed as “a way to hold onto hope.” According to the store display, even McCain has one, but you can be sure those pet rock revivals won’t be found anywhere near the Walgreens on 55th Street. I would love to see an accompanying Biden pet rock, but his name just does not have the zing that makes the “Barock” so successful.

2 - Dancing Teddy Bear wearing an Obama t-shirt

There were all sorts of Obama stuffed animals and dolls on Walgreens’s shelves, but this bear really stood out. Nothing represents drugstore merchandise better than a stuffed animal that dances to a famous song. Having your own dancing automaton is a sure signifier of Elvis-levels of fame. This particular bear wears a T-shirt emblazoned with Shepard Fairey’s iconic red, white, and blue image of Obama and when you squeeze its paw, it starts dancing to James Brown’s “I Got You (I Feel Good).”

3 - Obama Inauguration Eco-Friendly Reusable Totes

Today you can find totes that have anything from your favorite sport team’s logo to The Wizard of Oz characters printed them. These special Obama totes, which come with a choice of several different designs featuring the inauguration, are especially great because they allow the user to celebrate Obama and be “green” at the same time. For the environmentally conscious, it might be more fitting to carry one with Al Gore’s gallant visage, but the environmental crusader may have to step up his game to release his own line.

4 - The Obama Talking Pen

These pens make great stocking stuffers. Not only do the red, white, and blue pens show your support for the president (his name is emblazoned across it), they can inspire you with an excerpt from an Obama speech with just a simple click. Walgreens is now stocking Part II in the series, with pens that play clips from his inaugural address. Warning: Do not test out the talking function in the store unless you are willing to face the wrath of other shoppers, because the clip is loud and seems to go on forever.

5 - Obama Shot Glasses and Mugs

Take a shot of both Hope and Change with these double shot glasses. Each features an image that includes an American flag, the White House, and Obama’s Official Senate picture. Shot glasses and mugs are traditional American souvenirs and I am sure you could find similar ones in Washington, DC, but a true fan would only own an Obama shot glass from “Barack Obama Headquarters” (that’s what the Walgreens calls itself on its LED sign) in Hyde Park.