I keep seeing this commercial, and it makes me sad inside
for several reasons. First, let’s
watch, then we’ll discuss.
For one, I know that it’s totally great that this actor got
a national commercial, but why do I feel embarrassed for him when I see him
lip-synching this song?
Also, I’m pretty sure there is a segment of the population,
however small, that doesn’t actually know that this is a spoof of theme song
for the movie “Footloose,” like maybe even the actor himself. This makes me feel old. Is anyone with me on this?
Then, there’s the lyrics.
OH MY GOD the lyrics. It’s like a
copywriter wrong a song parody, then it was hacked and rewritten to death by a
bunch of executives (you think this is sexy because of Mad Men, but you could
not be more wrong. In reality it is
low-level executives all trying to justify their jobs and leave their own
unique mark on a project until what you’ve written turns into a zombie version
of itself), and now the actor is tasked with the job of bringing “enthusiasm
and life” to the number. Compounding this sad feeling is the fact that, despite the huge number of actors in Los Angeles who are also musicians, this actor seems to NOT KNOW HOW TO PLAY A GUITAR, so his fake-plucking is almost as distracting as the lip-synching.
The cumulative effect of this (at least on me) is that it
makes me cringe (at best), and at worst, it makes me think of a bad clown on
the Third Street Promenade--the one who smells like booze and whose five
o’clock shadow you can see through his greasepaint makeup.
Everyone’s mind goes into this kind of analytical spasm when
confronted with song parodies, right?
It feels weird to be all “business as usual” when we all
know there are so many people out there for whom that is not the case. The fact is, we got incredibly lucky and just
lost power for a few days because of the hurricane.
This was inconvenient, but for many others, it was much more than that.
In honor of that, I’m going to hold off on the funny for a
little while longer, and tell you about some things that I learned about/ ways
you can help.
Solar power. During the power outage, I was
spending too many hours a day trying to find ways to charge my gadgets. I took this opportunity to learn more about
backup power, which also gave me the chance to learn how far solar power has
come in the past couple of years. Now I
am the proud owner of this nifty backup power pack from GoalZero, along with a
solar panel that I am going to use as soon as the sun comes out again.
Did you even know this was a thing?
I now have it, and I’m glad I do.
I only ended up using it for a few days, but at one point it was the
only connection we had to the real world, which was nice. Check that out at the Virgin Mobile USA website.
The “Don’t Be a Bonehead” philosophy. I believe one of the greatest lessons I
imbibed from having an Army Colonel father was the “don’t be an bonehead”
philosophy, and I tried to adhere to that during the Hurricane and in the
post-Hurricane cleanup. This would
include things like: if you wake up to
discover that you have no power and no cellphone service, stay where you are
and do not attempt any shenanigans.
Shenanigans could result in injury, which would further burden the
already overtaxed services in your area.
The “Don’t Be a Bonehead” philosophy also really helps you out with storm
preparation, such as “Don’t be a bonehead and buy a bunch of stuff you have to
refrigerate or freeze, since chances are good that everyone is throwing
everything out in a few days,” and so on.
By the way, I should make it clear that my father never actually said
“Don’t be a bonehead,” because he is way more civilized than that. Seriously though, I believe that not being a bonehead is a good contribution to disaster relief efforts, because your lack of drama allows all the resources to go where they are actually needed. So there's that.
Also, if you’d like to give a donation to the Red Cross to
help Hurricane Sandy victims, here is a link, all convenient-like. Another thing you could do if you're in the area is donate blood and platelets, which I am planning on doing.
Now, if it’s ok with everyone and it doesn’t seem too
flippant, I will go back to posting pictures of funny signs and writing about
commercials that make me laugh.
How to Market a Book Not ironically, I wrote a book on how to market a book, and called it "How to Market a Book." I wish more writers would take the initiative to get out their on their own behalf, so I wrote up a set of instructions on how to do that.
Robert L. Forbes Website of Robert L. Forbes, children's book author. Check it out!