Sunday, December 31, 2023

Is FedEx clueless, or is it just me?


So in the modern era, when schools put on plays they just order a bunch of premade costumes from some Amazon site?  And if the costumes don't show up, the play is ruined, so thank goodness for FedEx because they'll get replacement costumes to the school in a hurry?

I'm pretty sure that when schools put on productions in the past, part of the production included- well, producing the costumes.  At this age, the kids- with a lot of help from their parents- would make the costumes.  In High School productions (at least, the ones organized by our school) a group of artistic kids are responsible for costume and set design and construction.  What else is pre-purchased for kiddie productions these days?  Are the backgrounds prefab too?  Are the scripts produced by some company in California, or an AI program, or what?

Or do the makers of this commercial just have no idea how these things work?  

Saturday, December 30, 2023

SOMEONE took Nyquil....


...but it clearly wasn't the woman in this ad, because the bottle is still completely full* at the end of the commercial.  Maybe she thinks that just looking at it helps relieve her of her cold symptoms.  Or being reminded of who she's married to is the best sleep aid imaginable?

Maybe the guy who filmed this off his tv is the guy who consumed Nyquil.  He doesn't have the steadiest hand I've ever seen.  Then again, we're talking about a guy who was inspired to film- um, THIS- off his tv set, doin' ok, buddy?

*which makes Nyquil the KFC bucket of cold medications- always being consumed, never less than 100 percent full.  Very odd. 

Friday, December 29, 2023

23andMe and a shallow search for meaning with obvious potential pitfalls


"I wonder, was it that makes me who I am?  Is it genetics, nature or nurture...."

Well, I can't tell you what makes you you, lady, but I can tell you what doesn't:  your genetics.  Personally, I think that what makes "you" you is what you do, not what your bloodline reveals about your ancestors.  Who you are related to, what part of the world your family "originated" from (come on, we all originated from the great rift valley in East-Central Africa) etc....none of this will compensate for a life you don't feel you adequately contributed to with your own actions.  Being related to someone important doesn't make you important.  Get over yourself.

Also- so many of these ads highlight relatives "finding each other" and "strengthening family bonds."  But I'd like to see at least ONE that features two people who THOUGHT that they were full siblings but discover through DNA testing that mom was having a little fun on the side which finally helps explain why they look so different.  Surely SNL has done a sketch with this theme but because I haven't watched the show in decades I've missed it?  Don't tell me that these tests have every bit as much potential to fray family ties as they do to strengthen them.  

But getting back to the woman in this ad- if you are looking for the meaning of your life in a vial of spit, well, I don't mean to be overly harsh, but you've done very little with that life and you know it. Encourage your kids to do better.

Thursday, December 28, 2023

This little girl is the dark cloud in what is otherwise a Silver Lining kind of life in this BMW commercial


Oh for chrissakes, just tell this girl who is way too old to believe in Santa that there's no such thing as Santa and spare us any more of her cliche'd "kid voice" our eardrums have been pummeled with since what feels like Forever.  I'd rather listen to a cat with it's tail caught in a mousetrap than any more of that awful "cutesy" bleating.  

I'd also rather watch almost anything more than the adventures of rich spoiled idiots and their Wonderful Suburb Direct from a Hallmark Movie Lifestyle.  But Lexus, Audi and BMW do their best to ruin our December with this tone-deaf trash every single year. 

Sunday, December 24, 2023

It's a Commercial Curmudgeon 2-for-1 deal. Merry Christmas!


Actually, it just looks like a typical car ad, featuring self-centered, entitled jagoffs driving at dangerous speeds down urban streets while paying slight attention to what's in front of them because I'm Driving a Nissan Get Out of My Way. 

("Raptor Bot?" That sounds pretty cool, actually.  Not sure how chasing a truck is going to get you one, though.  Is this how it works- trucks with the name of a toy on them are sure to be stuffed full of that toy?  If that's the case, why didn't it stop at the store where it's sold out?)

No, "Fansville" isn't cursed.  But we viewers sure are- cursed with an apparently endless parade of these brain cell-destroying, will-to-live-sucking Dr. Pepper ads whose charm- never in abundance- dried up several seasons ago.  Some companies beat a cute idea into the ground.  Dr. Pepper beats a cute idea into the ground, digs it back up, beats it again, quarters it, and sends the parts to the four corners of sanity to be nailed to road posts as warnings to us viewers to stop praying for the day that Fansville ads are finally banished from our tv sets.  May that day come sooner rather than later.  

Saturday, December 23, 2023

This iPhone 15 Commercial on an airplane makes negative sense


1.  I'm so sure that Lily not only flies coach, but books a middle seat.  Making her the only person on the planet with her net worth who not only flies coach, but books the middle seat.  This is something that totally happens in real life.  Pretty sure that if I had Lily's money and found myself in the middle seat, I'd bribe the person in the aisle to switch, but maybe that's just me?

2.  Lily is super helpful in providing advice for her thirsty fellow passenger- upon discovering that she's thirsty and can't even afford water,* Lily lets her know that she can get a great deal on an iPhone which by the way has titanium, which makes it an even bigger deal because titanium (in other words, Because Reasons.)  I'm assuming that when Poor Black Woman complains that she can't afford to buy a snack, Lily will chirp something about the great lease deals Lexus is offering through December.  Read the room, Lily. 

3.  Lily isn't going to buy headphones- she's just going to watch something on her iPhone.  She doesn't say "I brought my own headphones," she says "I'll just use my iPhone."  Meaning that not only does her seatmate go thirsty throughout the entire flight, but she'll have to listen to whatever the millionaire sitting next to her is watching on her iPhone which has titanium.  

*water is still free on every flight.  I've never even been on a flight that didn't offer free soda and juice.  I'm trying to wrap my head around a commercial for a ridiculously overpriced electronic status purchase that pretends that airlines are greedy.  I hope that the next time Lily flies she finds herself jammed between Tess Holiday and that 400-lb. lunatic who demands that every airline adopt a "Passenger of Size" policy. 

Friday, December 22, 2023

Suggestions for when to use your "Emergency Pizza"


1.  When years of eating non-emergency Domino's Pizza, Taco Bell and McDonald's finally catches up to you and you just need something to tide you over while you are waiting for the paramedics to respond to your 9-1-1 call.

2.  When people you don't like show up unexpectedly and are clearly not going to leave before you planned to have an actual dinner.  Serve them this and have a late meal after they've finally left. 

3.  When every pizza place on Earth except Domino's is closed, every grocery store has been wiped out by a plague, and you key broke off the tin of the 20-year old can of Spam in your cupboard.

4.  When it's December 31 and you've decided that your New Year's Resolution is to just say to hell with all of it, you've had enough. 

Thursday, December 21, 2023

I guess it's better than putting the money into HerbaLife....


"Liberty Mutual saved me money on my car insurance, and I decided to use that money to avoid an actual job for a little while longer start a dog walking business."

"You might ask, what did you spend the money on?  Well, I went to VistaPrint and ordered a whole bunch of business cards advertising that I'm unemployed and not all that interested in getting an actual job that requires actual skills, so as long as I'm just hanging around at home anyway I might as well walk your dogs for a fee while you are out making a living doing something of value to society."

"You might also ask, 'well, why dog walking?'  Well, if this was the late-20th century the business I'd probably start would be babysitting a lot of kids at my home opening a daycare center, but that's really regulated these days and parents have become a lot more particular concerning who watches their kids- otherwise unemployable unskilled women just don't cut it as "early childhood education teachers" anymore.  I figure for at least a few more years Double Income Couples will still trust clueless wannabe boss babe slobs like me with their dogs, though."

"You might also think, 'what qualifies you to walk dogs?'  Well, as you can see from this commercial, absolutely nothing beyond my conviction that it should be easy, and I want an easy job where I get to call myself boss.  If you think that this is kind of sad because I look like I'm in my late-20s and I really ought to get my head out of my a$$ and start thinking about doing an actual job with a future and stop pretending I can run my own business that isn't Multi-Level Marketing, well, keep your opinion to yourself and leave me to my delusions dreams!"

Tuesday, December 19, 2023

I'm inspired by this Toyota Grandma Camera Commercial....


I don't have any grandchildren, so I'll have to emulate the actions of the grandma in this ad with my godchildren instead....

"Dear Milo and Iris, 

I am so happy to learn that you love taking pictures.  I will never forget how thrilled I was to finally get a Polaroid One-Step Land Camera with cutting edge technology like the Q-light flash and a faux-leather carrying case.   To encourage your passion, I am adding this camera to the Kodak Instamatic 101 I got you for Christmas last year- I even found a few flash cubes on E-Bay for that one!"

And when they are old enough, I know they'll respond:

"Dear Uncle John,

Thanks for another clunky piece of outdated plastic and metal for which I can't find film.  It actually looks pretty nice on the shelf and is a good conversation piece during get-togethers.  Fortunately I can take infinitely better photos with my phone than I could with these museum pieces even when they were new lol!"

I am the best godfather ever. 

Sunday, December 17, 2023

Hey Instacart, how about adding a little life to your ads?


Take a look at the facial expressions of each person in this cringey nothing of a commercial.  It's so stilted and hokey- what's with the nods?*   What's with the guy in the row behind the father and son eavesdropping on the grocery shopping?  Is the game really that boring?  And while we're at it, who the hell shops for groceries on their phone during a game that father probably spent $100 or more on tickets to get into in the first place?

Maybe this is grocery shopping.  It sure isn't acting.  It's just stupid.  Maybe get some actual human beings for the next ad, and come up with some plausible scenario for the ordering of groceries.  

That Uber Eats "What are you doing" commercial featuring Idris Elba....


Honey, I've got some information that you may not have made yourself aware of:  

1.  You are wife No. 3.

2.  Wife No. 1 lasted for four years.  Wife No. 2 lasted less than a single year.  You may or may not be the first Mrs. Elba to see Year Five as Mrs. Elba.  

3.  Take a look at that house you are currently living in.  Take a look at your husband's net worth.  Remind yourself that you are a model who met Idris in a Moroccan jazz bar in 2017, two years before you became Wife No. 3.  Please hang on to that last part- Number Three.  You are Number Three. 

4.  You are seventeen years younger than your husband.  You won a "Ms. Vancouver"  Beauty Pageant, but that was waaaaay back in 2014.  You know what I'm implying.  

5.  Do the math.  Your husband is doing whatever the hell he wants to do.  I suggest you uncross your arms and remove all calendars from that house as quickly as possible.   Pack that attitude away, too.  There are plenty of single models out there who won't bat an eye at multimillionaire movie stars who want to rid their kitchen of fruit flies.  

Saturday, December 16, 2023

Wow, Apple. Just....Wow.


I didn't think it was possible for a commercial to truly make me long for an early death, but this one comes pretty damn close, especially since it's showing up during every. Freaking. Ad Break.  During every. Single. One. Of today's three-game NFL marathon on NFL Network.  

Sometimes I wonder why the comments on ads are turned off.  Sometimes I don't wonder at all.  Guess which time this is?  I mean, other than time to gouge my ears out. 

The sequel to this Capital One Bank ad will be a takeoff on 1983's "Stayin' Alive." You've been Warned.


I guess we boomers are supposed to have our nostalgia bone tickled by the sight of John Travolta (who may or may not be wearing fake padding under that coat) strutting around town to the Bee Gees while using a particular credit card to buy stuff because we are simultaneously supposed to believe it's Santa Claus AND Santa Claus is generating revenue despite giving away toys and never- according to all the canon we've ever been handed- actually handles money. 

(I mean, seriously- what is Santa's credit score, and how did he acquire it? When did Santa buy a car or apply for a mortgage?)

In case the music and strutting didn't do it for us, well, we'll just have Travolta/Santa strut back to 1978 and walk into a disco that is not only inexplicably still operating, but is filled with customers, including a very sad looking Donna Pescow, who looks like she's been told what her paycheck for this appearance is compared to Travolta's- either that, or she's just wearing the same face she's had on since she found out that Angie wasn't going to be renewed for a third season.   What's in your wallet, Donna?  My guess is, not much.  

Friday, December 15, 2023

Hey look who is on a T-Mobile ad- that actor you kind of think you maybe remember, dressed up like a marshmallow!


So I went over to Zoe Saldana's Wiki page and found that I've seen exactly two of her films:  Pirates of the Caribbean:  Curse of the Black Pearl, where she was a bit actor you'd miss if you blinked, and Columbiana, where she was the main star and in almost every scene.  The first film made $654 million and was the fourth-biggest box office hit of 2003.   The second made $60 million and was one of the bigger box office bombs of 2011.*

That being said, Ms. Saldana is apparently worth $40 million, which leaves me wondering why she wishes "her family" would buy the new iPhone Number Whatever.   This woman is very wealthy and 45 years old.  If she wants one of these new phones, I'm pretty sure her budget can swing it. 

On the other hand, if she's seriously considering buying that stupid coat, maybe she really isn't old enough to pick out a phone for herself.  But I guess that's supposed to be the joke?  "Why do I look like a marshmallow?"  Um, maybe because you are wearing an enormous, shapeless white coat that looks like it would prevent you from boarding most elevators?

*Apparently Ms. Saldana was in talks concerning a sequel as late as 2017.  Or so she says.  I'm sure the only reason it got shelved was because of that Illness of which we Shall Not Speak.  I'm also sure that it would have been a cinematic masterpiece and we are all a little poorer for having been deprived of it. 
All snark aside, and in the interest of full disclosure, I have to admit that I rather liked Columbiana, except when it was being weighed down by the stupid plot-derailing tacked-on love story.  Sure it was as predictable as all get out and as original as your average Hallmark Christmas film; it's still reasonable background noise when I'm doing housework.  And I find it hilarious that the nation of Columbia protested that the film placed the country in a "bad light."  How the hell does one injure Columbia's reputation?

Wednesday, December 13, 2023

Incredibly, Lexus December to Remember beneficiaries get even more unlikeable


It's not enough that this guy owns a Lexus and is married to a trophy wife at his beck and call, but he's got to have a hobby that involves torturing huskies, too?  I mean, come on- sled dogs?  Get a freaking snowmobile.  What's the matter, Lexus doesn't manufacture one so you can't look even more obnoxious to your neighbors?

Jesus, what's coming next year, Lexus?  Cock fighting?  

Monday, December 11, 2023

Five Points Concerning this Gross Jublia Ad


1.  This guy needs to stop grossing out his family and wear some socks.* 

2.  This kid needs to find something to do that keeps her attention so she isn't distracted by her dad's gross feet.**

3.  Is the doctor sitting in the living room with these people?  I don't understand how she's taking part in this conversation.

4.  Why is this kid yelling for mom?  Oh right- because dad's being stupid, and mom will fix this.  Mom fixes everything.  Because Television.

5.  Why are non-medical experts constantly being encouraged to Ask Their Doctor If This Drug Is Right For You?  Isn't that kind of their job already?  Oh right- yes, it's the doctor's job to diagnose and prescribe, but it's the patient's job to "helpfully suggest" expensive prescriptions rather than over-the-counter treatments- unless, of course, the problem is back pain, in which case it's Go Get a Salon Pas Patch and Get Out of My Office Already.  

*seriously, put on some socks you gross, weird little man.

**seriously.  I assume that this house has more than one room.  Is there a reason you're required to play eighteen inches from your father's disgusting toes?

Sunday, December 10, 2023

Two things that really annoy me about this Capital One Bank "Toy Drive" ad


1.  At the end of "How The Grinch Stole Christmas!" (book- 1957, network cartoon- 1966) the Grinch's heart grows three sizes, he realizes he had Christmas all wrong, he returns all the toys he stole, and he even carves the roast beast for all the Whos down in Whoville.  In other words, he's a totally reformed character.  This ad pretends that he still steals toys and is the pre-1957 Grinch in his outlook.  

This is like portraying Scrooge as a vicious, bitter old miser in modern ads (which also happens.)  It makes no sense.  Stop portraying former villains as current villains.*  It's stupid and doesn't fit into the Christmas spirit at all. 

2.  This guy's frozen smile is totally creeping me out.  Get that thing surgically removed from your face, buddy.   You look like someone offscreen has a gun to your head.  

*while we're at it, how about keeping your grubby hands off our memories period and come up with your own characters, music, et cetera?

Saturday, December 9, 2023

I'm supposed to care about this Truist Bank Customer, for Reasons I guess.



 I'll put down serious money concerning the work philosophy of Fernando, the guy who according to this ad has "twenty businesses:"  That he agrees with people like Dave Ramsey and his lapdog Ken Coleman- and Elon Musk-  that people who work more than one job are committing "theft" from their employers for not giving 100 percent of their time to one company.

Never mind that mega-rich CEOs brag about how many companies they serve on the boards of or (like this guy) how many businesses they own outright.  That's totally different, Because Reasons.  If you are a teleworker who isn't available 24/7 for the company that is paying you for forty hours per week, you're a "thief."  Doesn't matter if you get all your work done- when that happens, you aren't supposed to supplement your income by getting all of your work done somewhere else.  You're supposed to ask your original employer for more work (but not more money.)

So the diminishing number of companies that are still permitting people to work from home are beginning to incorporate software to count keystrokes, require those workers to keep their laptop cameras on and have a photo taken of them every other minute or so, and other 1984-style "productivity monitors" in order to prevent employees from trying to engage in "career cushioning," or establishing another stream of income which provides some measure of financial independence from the company.  Because it's bad enough that they don't want to waste time and money commuting to an office so that they can sit in a cubicle and do exactly the same thing they could just as easily do at home; we must make sure that the nose ring is securely fastened to one paycheck and one paycheck only.  

Meanwhile, this guy can have twenty companies and nobody will accuse him of neglecting any of them while he takes a salary from all of them.  This is just fine- again, because Reasons.  Make it make sense, someone.  Make it make sense. 

Friday, December 8, 2023

Another relatable "Wealth Management" commercial from J.P. Morgan


If you are kept awake by worries over paying your rent, settling student loan debts, keeping the lights on or just getting enough food to keep your blood sugar up so that you can get to your dead-end job for another day, well, look at the silver lining:  you could be one of the people in this ad, overwhelmed with "financial noise" consisting of buzzwords describing ways to shuffle money around when all you want to do is drink martinis in the bar of the five-star hotel you are staying at for your business conference. 

So the next time your feet hurt because you've been standing at the register for eight straight hours, or you hear a rumor that your company is about to downsize or rightsize or whatever they are calling Firing People these days, just count your blessings- at least you aren't tortured with thoughts about whether you should invest in junk bonds, crypto or digital pictures of bored apes.  Your problems are so simple compared to the struggles of the one percent.  Why aren't more of you grateful?

Thursday, December 7, 2023

Pizza Hut's confounding definition of value and taste


I don't know who this person is, or what she's talking about,  How exactly does paying $7.99 for warm starch, processed sugar, and enough carbohydrates to put an elephant into a coma (or the average family of fat Americans down for a long afternoon nap) equal a "good value?"  Because it's cheaper than a bucket of Kentucky Fried Grease?  

And "good taste?"  Consuming this mass-produced, bland garbage shows "good taste?"  Because it's not Taco Bell?  Talk about setting the bar low- so low, in fact, that the average American can still step over it without breaking into a sweat.  For now. 

Sunday, December 3, 2023

At least Shaq isn't selling crypto, gambling apps or Not-Medicare "Coverage," but still.....


I guess some people think it's fun to watch Shaquille O'Neill attempt to toss a pizza for a few seconds, and hang out with a few Papa Johns employees for a few minutes, before getting into one of his luxury cars and driving to the airport to climb aboard his private jet to fly off to one of his houses, because it convinces them that this former NBA star with a net worth of $400 million is Just One of The Guys.  I say "I guess," because I don't know, and I don't know because the comment section for this video is turned off.

I think it's entirely possible that some people also think that watching a guy who has rented his name and image to low-coverage, monthly-payment car insurance and high-interest rental "services" to a massive pizza chain in exchange for god knows how much money (which he doesn't need) is a little tone-deaf.  Especially when you consider that those employees Shaq is having fun with won't make in ten years what Shaq made in a week of playing basketball- hell, they probably won't make in ten years what Shaq was paid to do this commercial.  

But again- at least he's only selling trash "food" and not life-destroying addictions or terrible investments in non-fungible non-currency.  That puts him above Jamie Foxx and the ubiquitous Kevin Hart, at least.  Low bar, but Shaq gets over it.  I wonder if he tipped those employees with something other than a signature before driving off in that car, though. 

Friday, December 1, 2023

Gambling has never been easier. Yeah...this is going to end well.


If I saw any idiot staring at a phone screen held two inches from his face, I'd assume he forgot to pack his glasses, not that he was suffering from "single game fixation" or whatever the hell this Not a Doctor says.  At any rate, I guess the message here is that the "cure" for "single game fixation" is to download this gambling app that lets you bet on "any game, any time" with just a few quick clicks that allow you to put your money in jeopardy before you even have a chance to think about it, which I suppose is ok if you're Charles Barkley (pretty sure he can risk $200 for "fun") but sure doesn't sound like a great return for your entertainment dollar if you are the kind of middle-class schmuck this commercial is aimed at.

By the way, this app is also the "cure" for "financial stability."  Take it often enough, and you won't have to worry about regularly having enough money to pay your bills ever again.  No more wondering what to do with your excess cash, because you won't have any.  But hey, it's all just good fun and just in case here's a GAMBLING PROBLEM? toll-free number to call!  No worries!

I thought Life was a series of insultingly stupid commercials encouraging destructive behavior?


Yeah, accepting a job offer is a gamble.  Buying a house is a gamble.  Getting married is a gamble. 

But here's the very worst gamble, featuring the very worst odds:  Gambling.  

I guess we're "supposed" to gamble because it's "fun" and also because if we don't, we are kind of wussy and afraid of life.  You know, like we were supposed to buy crypto for pretty much the same reason a couple of Superbowls ago.  And before that, we were supposed to smoke this or that brand of cigarettes to achieve the same result- to have fun and be seen as cool, if not trailblazers.

I missed getting in on the ground floor of smoking and crypto, and I'm going to miss the current Do This Or You're a Buzzkill Grampa trend, which I guess is making sports more "fun" by betting your financial stability on the performance of millionaires playing what I thought was just a game.  It's not that I don't want to be cool; it's just that I can't afford it.