Faith Popcorn gave me her mouse pad!

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The mouse pad pictured at left used to belong to famed trendinista Faith Popcorn, who grabbed it off her desk and handed it over to me this morning so I could read the list printed upon it of 17 trends that guide her firm‘s work. Then she told me to keep it.

I’ve been using it for a couple of hours now in place of my usual “Time Warner by the numbers” pad. What can I report? That the surface on the Popcorn pad is a little slick for my taste, and that there’s something unnerving about gazing constantly at the 17 trends listed upon it. They identify societal phenomena that marketers can take advantage of or need to watch out for.

Most famous is “Cocooning: The need to protect oneself from the harsh, unpredictable realities of the outside world.” But there’s also “Down-Aging: Nostalgic for their carefree childhood, baby boomers find comfort in familiar pursuits and products for their youth.” And “EGOnomics: To offset a de-personalized society, consumers crave recognition of their individuality.” And so on.

I don’t dispute the validity of any of these. I’m just worried that if I keep looking at the list every day, I will eventually find that my personal attitudes and beliefs have adjusted themselves to conform to Faith-Popcorn-certified trends. So Faith, you can have the mouse pad back.

UPDATE: The snotty tone of this post has led some to speculate that I don’t like Faith Popcorn. I do like her. She’s really nice. I mean, she gave me her mouse pad! I just don’t want it anymore. (Maybe I should have just tried selling it on eBay.)