Punda Malidadi

Thursday, February 10, 2005

The New Gateway Purity Test is Out

And I humbly ask for all of your scores such that I may place myself in the greater context. I have calculated my preliminary score, but there are a few terms that I need clarified before I will post the actual number.

My sociology teacher is also pretty cool. Not as hilarious as my writing teacher, mind you, but he does make reference to the Onion every now and then. Today was one of those days where I felt like being belligerent.

We watched a film called "Advertising and the end of the world", the gist of which is advertising = evil and leads people to believe that what they need to be happy is things, when really it is meaningful personal relationships.

I mostly agreed with what the film had to say, for example, that there is so much advertising out there(3600 instances of advertising per person per day) that companies have to find way to cut through all the noise and still get to us, whether that happens through appealing toour dreams and desires, or making us fear our worst nightmares(which are all social, by the way, as opposed to materialistic. In fact, the advertising industry has started shifting away from advertising the actual characteristics of the given product as early as the 1920s, when they noticed that after a certain level of comfort, things only sell when tied to positive social experiences- like Stovetop stuffing and a happy family, or say Axe aftershave and sex in an elevator).

"So, does anyone know an example for this? Let's throw some out there. Catrin?"

"Do you know that commercial where a man and a woman are playing twister, and he has his bum in her face, and then someone asks him how his diarrhoea was?"

(and by the way, that is how diarrhoea is spelt- not "diarrhea", which is the US American spelling. And we don't want that, now do we?)

"Uhm, no. But yes, I guess that is a good example for how the nightmare scheme works. What did you think about that segment about De Beers?"

"That was quite scary how their own promotional video stated that they have the plan to make the diamond anniversary ring a cultural obligation, just like the diamond engagement ring has become just that in the short time span of 40 years of advertising. "

Another student:

"Yeah, but If you want to propose to your girlfriend, she will want one. What are you going to do?"

I have a suggestion:

"Find a better girlfriend."

I get some laughs there, but my teacher retorts, sarcstically:

"So I am supposed to give her a ring from a cracker jack box?"

I am unclear how he could be so clueless.

"Of course! Have you never seen Breakfast at Tiffany's? That would be the best proposal ever."

He mumbles something like "O....kay.....I guess for some really weird people that might work.. "

Then, he recovers:

"Yeah, so, there are some social obligations that don't really leave the consumers with a choice. For example, there was this headline in the Onion the other day: "Coke- refreshing *and* mandatory. " That plays satirically on the fact that there are some consumer goods that you just can't not take part in."

I am full of constructive suggestions:

"Like pants?"

He gives me this look, and says:

"Uhm, I guess."

I shut up for the rest of the class. I didn't want to overdo it.


Anonymous Anonymous wrote:
[4:43 PM, February 10, 2005]
Ah! L'Audrey!

I am a fan of people that are capable of questioning ridiculous social conventions. I have never seen a cracker jack box.
Blogger Catrin wrote:
[5:17 PM, February 10, 2005]
I have the sudden urge to rewatch that movie. But alas, I have a paper to wrote until tomorrow. Meh.
Anonymous Anonymous wrote:
[5:54 PM, February 10, 2005]
I am glad that I do not have to wrote a paper since tomorrow.
Anonymous Anonymous wrote:
[5:57 PM, February 10, 2005]
Alice felt dreadfully puzzled. The Hatter's remark seemed to her to have no sort of meaning in it, and yet it was certainly English. "I don't quite understand you," she said as politely as she could.

"The Dormouse is asleep again," said the Hatter, and he poured a little hot tea upon its nose.

The Dormouse shook its head impatiently and said, without opening its eyes, "Of course, of course--just what I was going to remark myself."

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