When Jim and I first started “Wisdom and Folly” a while back, he was amazed at how many ideas I could come up within a relatively short period of time. I told him that it was just stored up conversations I have been having with myself for the last ten years and now I finally had the opportunity to get them out of my head and into the real world, or at least the cyber-version of it. While some of these conversations are deep and soulful, a great number of them are completely meaningless and not worth sharing. The following are somewhere in the middle.
Has anyone else noticed a shift in the stratagem of advertisers of late? You know you are in a serious economic recession when Mercedes starts advertising themselves as a great value and words like “luxurious” and indulgent” have been replaced with “economical” and “money saving”. As a one-income mother of four, I love a bargain but feel a bit conflicted regarding this approach. After all, it’s advertising, the point of which is to try to get me to spend money, not save it. It reminds me of that Dove Cosmetics campaign a few years back where they featured “real women” in their supposed celebration of “real beauty.” While I applaud their seemingly sincere endeavor at truth in advertising, one has to question its legitimacy. After all, what are they attempting to peddle with all this “realness”? A bunch of products designed to reduce, eliminate or mask all your “realness,” right? Of course, what should we expect from an industry that classifies anyone who wears clothes larger than my six-year-old as a plus-sized model? Still, it is the hypocrisy of it all that irritates one, or at least this one. Perhaps that is why I find Old Spice guy so appealing. Sure, he is trying to manipulate me into buying his product, but at least he is man enough to just come out and tell me so rather than trying to convince me he is really trying to celebrate my inner beauty or help me save money.
Have you ever pondered the ridiculously low speed limits in those areas surrounding schools? I am all for child safety and am the first to waggle a finger at those who speed past my children as they ride their bikes and generally frolic through the neighborhood, but have you ever tried to actually drive 20 mph? I think my kids could run faster than that. And what exactly do they expect the children to be doing that requires such attentive driving on my part? Have they added car dodging to the nationwide physical education curriculum? Come to think of it, I don’t recall seeing large numbers of children standing roadside lately. Perhaps they are all actually inside the school, rather than hanging out waiting to be run over.
Finally, I am a regular at a nearby organic grocery store and a subscriber to their newsletter. It often contains interesting community info or ideas for healthy living. This past week the writer went on a tirade regarding government subsides which artificially lower the prices of fast food. Doesn’t it seem ironic that government policies are on the one hand making unhealthy (not to mention unappetizing) food more affordable and on the other “we the people” are spending millions to educate parents and children against the evils of obesity. Just another case of the government creating more problems by trying to solve a problem that really isn’t part of their mandate.