Truth in adverse-tising.

January 7, 2010

Commercials.  They really, really suck.  They loudly disrupt our television viewing and they subliminally suggest to all of us what we need to purchase so that we can be whole, happy, and not suck any longer.  We are constantly bombarded with images of cookies, razors, jeans, candy bars, investment banks, and so on.  But you know, there are some products we, strangely enough, don’t ever see ads for on TV.  Here are a few examples:

1.  String.  (Steven Wright has famously opined on this, so I won’t belabor the point.)

2.  Douche.   (Do women even use this shit anymore?)

3.  Canned tomatoes.  (Not spaghetti sauce, not pizza sauce – I’m talking good ol’ diced tomatoes.  A staple in any decent kitchen cupboard.)

4.  Knitting needles.  (There are lots of old women and hippie dippies making their own sweaters and shit.)

5.  Fingernail clippers.  (We all use ’em – well, except maybe this woman.)

6.  Dog leashes.  (Some dogs are pretty fuckin’ strong.)

7.  Sandpaper.  (There’s good sandpaper, and then there’s cheap-ass-eats-through-quickly-and-ruins-your-fingers sandpaper.)

8.  Towels.  (Think of all those nauseating ads for toilet paper.  What about towels, the softness of which we so deserve and should demand?)

Are there some products that simply don’t need to be advertised?  Products whose manufacturers have cornered their particular market and now nothing more needs to be said about them?  Why, then, must we be subjected to ads extolling the virtues of mountain fresh Clorox bleach?

Let me know which products you think are strangely absent from Commercial Land.  Go get a life – but keep reading this blog!

I am so glad Conan is back.

I couldn’t ever stand Jay Leno and his puerile, sexually fixated humor – not because I’m a prude (look around the blog a bit if you’re new – you’ll figure it out) – it’s just that he’s a one trick pony.  The only time he was ever funny was during “Headlines” and “Stuff We Found On eBay” – and that was only because it was found or submitted material, not because of his alleged comic genius.  Good riddance.  I hope his prime-time show tanks.

And Andy Richter is back!  That’s good news, too – but his annoying laughter sounds a bit forced and is already driving me crazy.  Can’t have everything, I suppose.  But I’ll take Andy’s nasal snickering over Jimmy Fallon any night.

In fact, I think he really sucks.

I really miss Conan on Late Night.

I hope the West Coast doesn’t beat the quirkiness out of him.

English comic Frank Skinner is no stranger to the usage of  “dirty words” and has even defended swearing as a necessary part of comedy and language.  (As well he should – he’s absolutely right. )

Recently, however, he’s taken to removing swearing from his stand up act – not on moral grounds, he insists, but in an attempt to “freshen up” his act.  As a result of his experiment, he suddenly seems to have found a new appreciation for swearing, rather than a revulsion for it.  He told the BBC that he thought “there was now too much swearing on TV”.  OK, that doesn’t sound good, but he goes on to say that “I don’t want people using so much swearing that there’s a blanket ban because there won’t be then any room for the clever swearing – the beautiful, eloquent swearing.”

The old “less is more” adage.  I can agree with him to a point.  But, where do you draw the line, Frank?  Do you keep a staff of TV censors on hand to make sure that certain words aren’t uttered more than a certain quota?  Can you see these poor bastards, prepping the cast?  “OK, it says here you can only say ‘shit’ 4 times in the course of an hour, so you gotta keep track of that… oh, and try to keep the F-bomb to a minimum, too.”

Oh, but we’ll have to wait on that F-bomb.  According to a BBC article, “[a] poll for The Sunday Times found 30% of people believed the F-word should be banned while 55% thought the C-word should not be allowed. But 49% of the viewers said there should be a place for swearing on television.”

So fuck and cunt have no place on TV?  Those 2 little syllables, eh?  They’re enough, apparently, to keep sponsors and viewers away.  But other swear words, like “asshole” and “cocksucker”, apparently, do have a place on TV?

I know I’ve said this before, but isn’t this all rather ridiculous?  Certain syllables are OK while others are not?

Now I’ve seen everything.

October 14, 2008

By some unfortunate series of events, I found myself at home the other day, watching that new daytime show called “The Doctors.” One of their guests was an ill-fated attractive woman in her 40s who had never experienced an orgasm.  Ever.  In her life.  Damn. That’s gotta suck.

But what really got my attention was another guest, named Heather, who suffered from something called PGAD, which stands for Persistent Genital Arousal Disorder.

To which I said, “Huh?  The fuck is that?”

Here are Heather’s symptoms: She is sexually aroused throughout each and every day for apparently no reason.  She is compelled – morning, noon and night – to masturbate.  Not only to masturbate, but to have 3 consecutive orgasms each time she masturbates.  Somehow, this has completely wrecked her marriage and her life.  She doesn’t even want to leave the house anymore.

The good doctor explained that there were certain areas of the brain, blah blah blah.

OK, hold the phone here.  You’re telling me that the urge to jerk off frequently is now some sort of serious medical condition?  I thought it was called boredom.

According to a website I found on this matter, PGAD is primarily experienced by women, has no known cause or cure.  Imagine that.  Oh, but I’m sure the pharmaceutical companies will launch some new pill for it soon. Maybe they’ll call it “Orgastrol”.   Imagine the TV ads for that disorder – you thought the ones for Restless Legs Syndrome were funny!  (At least I thought they were.)

Anyone out there suffering from this same sort of disorder?  Pardon me for making such light of it – I don’t know about you all, but I think most teenagers (and many adult men) suffer from this “malady”, don’t you?

Knee jerk.

June 19, 2008

There is war in Iraq; there are thousands of people displaced by floods and earthquakes. So to what did the talking heads on the national news devote precious airtime last night?

Tiger Woods’ fucking knee surgery.

Honestly, does anyone really give a shit about this, other than Tiger and his immediate family and friends? Obviously I don’t wish the guy any harm – but do we really need, as a nation, to hear about it?

It reminds me of back in the 80s, when I was a kid watching Live Aid and I was SO excited to see U2’s performance – which was then interrupted by news of Ronald Reagan’s colon polyps, reported in excruciating detail. Two words – justifiable homicide.

And anyway, golf is a bullshit “sport” anyway. Sure, I used to go the driving range as a teenager and whack at a bucket of balls, but to devote thousands of acres of prime real estate and even more countless thousands of dollars to the hitting and following and hitting again and following again of some little white ball? Elitist, pompous, self-important white-guy bullshit.

Hitchens is tha bomb.

June 14, 2008

A moment from the archives – In the hours and days immediately following the death of Rev. Jerry Falwell, Hitchens is brilliant, absolutely brilliant, and holds so fast and true to his dissent. Enjoy, faithful readers!