Monday, December 7, 2009

Question of the Day

‘Tis the season, and has been since the middle of October, for “holiday” commercials. The conniptions of the True Believers (see below) notwithstanding, we’re getting blasted from all sides with ads for tchotchkes and everything else for the gift-giving season. So naturally…

Which Christmas commercial do you find the most offensive?

Here’s my list: the hypnotically plinky-plunky stop-motion thing from AmazonKindle, which includes, among other things, a woman being threatened with a knife; all the car commercials, including the one that mocks Christmas commercials for cars; and anything that uses “Jingle Bells” or “Deck the Halls” because they are in the public domain and they’re too cheap to pay for the rights to something that is not religious but seasonal like “White Christmas.” But the worst of all are the ones where the college student surprises the family by showing up for Christmas. Call your travel agent and book a heavy guilt trip. The one that really cranks it up to eleven is the one from Publix, our local supermarket chain here in Florida. It begins with a young guy at work as a resident at a hospital, doing his rounds on Christmas Eve and telling his patients wistfully that no, he can’t go home for the holidays. We see him calling his folks to (gulp) wish everyone a Merry Christmas for me, then going home all alone on the bus to his cold and lonely apartment, only to find that — SURPRISE! — all of his family has crowded into his place to make him a perfect Christmas dinner with all the good stuff you can buy at Publix. The look on his face is priceless — but I can’t help but think that in the real world, the first thought that comes to his mind is either “Oh, shit, they’ll find my stash,” or “I hope my girlfriend (or boyfriend) didn’t leave any underwear lying around.”