I was watching the telly earlier, which is quite a rare event these days, because even if it is on it's usually populated by surreally costumed garden dwelling freaks playing with balls and giving each other hugs because apparently they just want to. Children seem to lap this sort of thing up though, which explains why my two year old has no concept of personal space.
I can go for days at a time without directly watching TV. I used to make an effort to watch a favoured show, like Mock the Week or Dexter, but now I don't even do that. I've actually missed one of the new episodes of Life with David Attenborough, and those are the sorts of programmes I would cancel a doctor's appointment for. Actually, that should be Life, narrated by David Attenborough, because otherwise it sounds like a programme watching the octogenarian animal privacy invader doing his shopping and reading the paper*.
Even the news, which previously I watched about three times a day so I could tut a lot and shake my head in grim disbelief, is now accessed via the smoothness of the internet tubes.
A random selection of programmes in the middle of the day shows me what I'm missing.
On one side, someone is thinking of moving house, so they're going on national telly to do it. On another, an amateur chef is being told he's not as good as a professional chef by a professional chef. On a third, some very closely related chavs are arguing about who fathered whose child and proving that the more gold you wear, the lower socioeconomic class you occupy (unless you're Mr T), and on yet another, four women are sitting around a desk chatting about absolutely nothing. Nothing at all, and getting rounds of ecstatic, whooping applause for it.
I get the impression I'm not missing out on some cultural revolution here, where I will be enlightened and informed on an hourly basis.
This rare television watching event I was treating myself to was a non-BBC channel. As an Englishman, this makes me a bit nervous, like venturing into a foreign market place where they sell huge aromatic rugs, have Kalashnikov stalls and swarthy men with moustaches you could filter plankton through shout at you with words like "Makalakanaka!".
This also meant they had commercial breaks.
The adverts duly came on and I did my economic duty and listened to their propositions. One was for Sni . . .
Snic . . .
Snick . . . ick . . . Marathons!
Sorry, I still have trouble calling them Snickers's's's after all these years.** Don't know why I'm so bothered. They're only a Mars bar with peanuts in.
Anyway, the current advert for said anaphylaxis-causing sweety bar features the aforementioned Mr T, famous for portraying the gruff, blinged-up tough guy war veteran Barely Articulate Baracus in the 80's series The 'A' Team, although what the army would make of such an outfit and copious amounts of jewelry I do not know. Standards must have been lower in those days. Perhaps they had a "Don't ask, don't tell" attitude towards Mohawks and earings.
Where was I?
Oh yes. Mr T advertising Mara . . . Snickers's's's. In the adverts, he arrives at the scene of some poor bloke who is wimping out (not going in a cold pool, or avoiding contact with a football), in a vehicle of war (a tank or a helicopter), and then proceeds to shout "Get some nuts" whilst lobbing chocolate bars at them.
A few things popped into my head from this. The first is that how come Mr T looks exactly the same now as he did when I watched The A Team back in the day. The Thursday, in fact.
The second is that sex and violence sells. In this case, both are used. The candy-dispensing Huey represents the violence, and the sex is represented by . . . er . . . nuts, possibly.
The point is, sex and violence sells snacks.
Sex or violence.
Sex and/or violence.
Anyway, they appeal to the baser aspects of our psyche, which I suppose is exactly what hunger is, so in order to link them advertisers take advantage of our barely controlled, barely evolved lizard brain which is essentially only interested in the four Fs: Feeding, fighting, fleeing and mating.
Of all these, sex comes first, if you know what I mean.
Hence purdy ladies and winsome chaps advertising choccies and cakes.
And there's something for everyone, no matter who, or what, tickles your fancy.
Look at this:
I'm not that into bestiality, but I wouldn't kick that bit of totty out of bed even if she defecated on the duvet and then ate it.
Which she very well might, because she's a rabbit.
Mind you, some advertising concepts make no sense at all. I just found these crisps in our cupboard:
What do they transform into?
Well, you'll have to wait a few hours to find out.
* Which might work. I'll pitch it.
** According to Wikimisleadia, the name change occurred in 1990! It's not that I'm behind the times. Just set in my ways.
Now, excuse me. I'm off to watch Blake's 7 on my Betamax.