My Favorite Olympics.

August 20, 2008

For the first time in a while, I’ve watched the Olympics every day. Maybe it’s because I finally have an HD TV and everything – even synchronized swimming – looks great in HD.

Despite the fact that Ian Crocker (a high school friend’s younger brother) will go home with no hardware this time, there were definitely a few highlights for me this year, in my opinion:

  • Beijing is on the other side of the planet. Insomniacs rejoice. Something worth watching (LIVE, NO LESS!) at 3:30 am!
  • Hearing grown men repeat the last name “Dalhausser” over and over. Teehee. (pronounced Dollhouser.)
  • Hearing announcements repeated by an overenthusiastic Chinese announcer. Everything sounds funnier/cooler/more international in Chinese.
  • Watching hurdlers wipe out.

  • Seeing Nastia put that annoying little Shawn in her place in the all-around in women’s gymnastics. (Sorry, Shawn. You’ve been way too perky and confident coming into these games.)
  • Bela Karolyi’s semi-comprehensible, over-enthusiastic commentary. “Total reep-off!”
  • My grandmother’s valid point about “why do women wear bikinis in so many events?” Think about it – in running and beach volleyball, why don’t men wear the male equivalent of sport banana hammocks?
  • Dara Torres indirectly teaches the world how to appropriately pronounce our name.
  • Dara Torres (and a few other “older” silver-medal winners) raises the question: do older athletes “still got it” or can’t compete with the gold-winning whippersnappers?
  • Usain Bolt’s (Jamaica) obvious attitude problem. The hand-pistol? Flashing his pinky ring? Really? He’s not an Olympian. He’s a circus act.
  • The moms. Some of the funniest freakout video ever put on TV.
  • The opening ceremony. Good luck competing with THAT, London.
  • Oh yeah… and that Michael Phelps guy. Not shabby.

Ok. Maybe reviewing cereal isn’t very “addy,” but brand extensions are relevant. And until Neil French straps a bomb to himself and walks into an AWNY meeting, I really don’t have too much ad stuff to comment on lately.

This morning, I’m munching on a bowl of Strawberry Chex. I’m a sucker for anything “strawberry.” In fact, a lot of cereals are going the way of the berry:

  • Honey Bunches of Oats w/ Strawberries
  • Special K w/ Red Berries
  • Rice Krispies w/ Strawberries
  • Strawberry Chex
  • All-Bran Strawberry Medley
  • Strawberry Honeycomb
  • Kellogg’s Frosted Mini-Wheats, Strawberry Delight
  • Kellogg’s Fruit Harvest w/ Strawberries & Blueberries
  • Kashi Strawberry Fields
  • Berry Burst Cheerios (also has bananas in it…ick)
  • Strawberry Yogurt Cheerios
  • Post Shredded Wheat w/Strawberries

If you think of any others, please leave them in the comments below. These are the ones I could think of at the moment.

Anyway, that’s a lot of Strawberry Cereal. And I’m not complaining. Except, with that much berry-competition out there, you’d think that Chex would try to make their cereal taste more like STRAWBERRIES than like strawberry-flavored Twizzlers. Really.

Yuck. First Chex with the Taco-Box, now Twizzlers-flavored cereal. Get your act together, Chex. Hmph.

I’m Baaaaack.

June 1, 2008

Hey all,

Sorry about the craptacular lack of blogging the past couple months. I could make up an excuse, but you’d all see through it… mainly because we’re all in advertising, hence, professional liars.

But I’m back. And I’m ready to rant again.

Just got back from Mexico. Had a good time, despite the fact that 3 doctors wouldn’t let me dive after having pneumonia a few weeks beforehand. Apparently, they don’t want to be blamed when my lungs explode. Go figure.

One of my favorite parts about traveling abroad is checking out foreign supermarkets. I think they say a lot about other cultures. The style of packaging, the language they use, the flavors they like most, etc. Plus it’s just fun to make fun of people who aren’t like you.

So, here were my findings at the Chedraui in Cozumel:

Ok. I know the picture is sideways, but I was too lazy to rotate it. Cut me some slack. Anyway, the two most popular sweet flavors I found were chocolate (yes!) and strawberry (double yes!). This cereal is for grown-ups who realize they should probably eat like grown-ups, but think like 9 year olds. Yup. Chocolate All-Bran.

Just more evidence that chocolate and strawberry are big… and even Mexican kids require everything to be overdesigned, loud, “Extrema” and “Intenso.” Oh, and full of sugar.

I particularly liked the name of this product. I even bought a small package of them on a whim… simply so I could whip them out of my bag every so often and yell “SPONCH!” at Jason.

They were kinda weird. I threw them out after eating a couple.

American Parents: take comfort that little American girls aren’t the only little girls in the world taught to idolize noseless whores.

Just in case you had any doubts, check out one of the Oreo flavors available down there. Yeah. Chocolate and strawberry. So jealous. Even Nutri-Grain makes a bar that’s filled with strawberry in a chocolate crust. C’mon, America. Jump on the Mexican bandwagon.

I also thought their muffins were kinda interesting. Why top a muffin with cinnamon chips or blueberries when you can use Froot Loops, Corn Flakes, and Cocoa Krispies?

Besides having a 150-ft yogurt section, it appears Mexicans love yogurt in lots of stuff. Apparently, the addition of yogurt to Trix makes it healthier…or something.

This is the kind of Pepsi you drink while listening to your retro 2nd generation iPod, wearing all the latest fashions from 2002.

Enchilada-flavored apples. (Why?)

Kranky: the fool-proof candy for stupid parents. This must be the treat you give your kids when they get crabby. Right? But then… what do you give a kid who’s happy? Or melancholy?

So, basically, these are the items that stood out to me the most. Sure, there were chile & lime chips up the wazoo, about 50 different kinds of pork rinds, and enough odd things at the prepared foods counter to make you go cross-eyed… but I dunno. These were my faves. Oh, and I tried the strawberry Oreos… they weren’t very strawberry-y. A little disappointing.

Well, until my next shopping trip abroad!…….

I was always under the impression that the word “constitutional” had to do with taking a stroll. Sort of an old-timey, droll way of saying you’re taking a proper walk.

Then, my dad (and a couple other people) informed me that a “constitutional” is actually about taking a dump. Like, going on one’s morning or evening constitutional means your going to the can.

I looked up the definition on dictionary.com:

The NOUN “Constitutional” is defined as:

1. a walk or other mild exercise taken for the benefit of one’s health.

2. A walk taken regularly for one’s health.

So, I’m right. But I can see how that could be a smarmy way of saying one is taking a shit. I mean, it’s pretty unhealthy to hold a poo in your colon. And also, perhaps back when people were more “proper,” they also had to use outhouses. Which literally meant taking a walk to go take a dump.

Either way, I find this very interesting. Am I alone?

Never Jingle Your Keys Again!

December 11, 2007

That’s right, ladies and gentlemen. Now, when you cheat on your husband/wife, your significant other won’t be awakened by the sound of your keys jingling in the lock! Just replace your front foyer with ceramic tile and you can sneak in and out as you please!

The KeyPort is a seriously cool invention. The kind of thing that will change what we carry in our pockets…like the iPhone for, well, keys.

Check this thing out: 6 keys, all secured in one tough little slider… this thing is sweet. Almost looks like a lighter.

Right now, as a first edition run, you can get one for $295. (AGH!) But, soon, it should go down to about $50 in 2008. Frankly, I’d fork up the bucks. This thing is tight.

So, after my Thanksgiving travel, I discovered something wonderful. If you shove a plastic bottle full of conditioner into your sports bra, the metal detectors simply cannot detect it. Nor can the naked eye.

Which makes me wonder… what if smaller-bosomed gals (say, AA-B cup) went out and got a padded DD bra? Simply for travel? Not only would it make the hours at the airport that much more fun (imagine all the pilots who would hit on you at the Chili’s bar!), but how many little bottles of moisturizer, conditioner, shampoo, hair product, etc you could fit in there?

Personally, I jumped into the bathroom right before security to stuff my bra. Then, on the other side, I pulled everything out and shoved it in my backpack. Frankly, walking around with a bunch of little plastic bottles on me is both unnerving and uncomfy.

I told my friend Pat about this concept and he shared with me what he asked Santa for Xmas. It’s called the BeerBelly. Basically, it’s a strap-on tummy that you can fill with 64 oz of beer. Pretty ingenius.

If, for some reason, you want this slobtacular product, check out this site. The website says it’s good for even sneaking hot chocolate into places (teehee!)… right, and the “water pipe” I bought down on Bleecker St is meant for smoking “tobacco”….

But…since when have we Americans become so obsessed with hiding liquids? I wonder if we could take any notes from the prohibition days to help us get conditioner on airplanes. Hmmm….

So, as most creative teams tend to do, Marshall and I had a pointless debate yesterday that will no doubt NOT change the world. But it was fun.

This debate started when I referred to his “sneakers.” Notice exhibit A:

These are the “sneakers” he was wearing at the time. He immediately corrected me… telling me that they were in fact NOT sneakers, but “shoes.”

Baffled, I asked him how he could even come to that conclusion.

According to him, since he doesn’t RUN in this particular pair of footwear, they aren’t sneakers. They are “shoes.” The following image, exhibit B, would be a good example of what Marshall views as “sneakers:”

Okay. BUT, despite WHAT a set of footwear is used for, doesn’t it belong to one basic category? Those afforementioned Pumas were definitely sneakers. Just because they’re his everyday footwear doesn’t make them any less of a sneaker.

No, it’s not a PERFORMANCE sneaker, but it’s a goddamn sneaker. Call it a shoe, sneaker, trainer, bootie, whatever… I don’t care. Both images on this page are of SNEAKERS. Dammit.

Any thoughts?

Seinfeld Trial 2007?

December 2, 2007

Almost 10 years after the cast of Seinfeld was sentenced to jailtime for criminal indifference, in an undeniably disappointing final episode, I think back on that double episode with a bit of curiosity. I caught a little bit of the final episode recently… the judge tells Kramer, Jerry, Elaine, and George, “I do not know how, or under what circumstances the four of you found each other, but your callous indifference and utter disregard for everything that is good and decent has rocked the very foundation upon which our society is built. I can think of nothing more fitting than for the four of youto spend a year removed from society so that you can contemplate the manner in which you have conducted yourselves.”

And frankly, I didn’t buy it. I kinda bought it back in 1998. But today, in 2007, I don’t. I think I’ve become numb to the bullshit crimes against humanity Jerry and George committed. Sure. They were shallow and douchey… but how do they compare to the TV characters of today?

I mean, a lot has changed in 10 years. 9/11. Bush in the office for almost 8 years. And TV has definitely changed. Even the characters on South Park have become crazier. Look at the progression of Stan’s dad and Mr. Garrison. They’ve definitely become 50 times worse than a Seinfeld character. Family Guy and American Dad are front-runners too… taking immorality to great, animated lengths. (I’m not complaining. I love these shows.)

In terms of live-action comedies, look at Arrested Development. Or Always Sunny in Philadelphia. Even a couple of characters on 30 Rock. These characters are considerably more morally bankrupt than the main characters of Seinfeld.

Like… when Dennis becomes a man-whore.

Or when the gang finds a dumpster baby and tries to turn a buck on it…

Or many other moments… the guys try to fuck each others’ moms, Dee and Dennis become crack addicts to mooch off the government, etc.

The parents in Arrested Development aren’t exactly stellar examples of good parents…constantly lying, playing favorites, etc. Gob and Lindsay are particularly soulless… I couldn’t find any good clips on YouTube. Fox pulled all the good ones. Bastards. Consider that two young cousins basically want to do each other, the patriarch framed his twin brother on multiple occasions to avoid prison, and the family’s company built model homes (forts) in Iraq. A little worse than George eating an ├ęclair out of the trash…

I could go on and on… Californication, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Lucky Louie, Weeds, Samantha Who, etc etc etc. All these shows feature soulless assholes…and we laugh at them. It’s become the latest trend. The worse, the better. And I tend to wonder when we became so numb to it all.

Personally, I love it. And that’s why more and more of it is coming our way. It’s taking that much more to shock us.

Watching the finale of Seinfeld in reruns was even more disappointing today than it was in 1998. Who cares if these losers go to jail? Now, if they’d become crack addicts, ruined people’s lives more severely, or run from their illegitimate children… okay. I might buy it.

I’ll give credit where it’s due. There was a certain shock-value to what the cast of Seinfeld did in its run. It set the stage for shows like Always Sunny in Philadelphia and Arrested Development.

However, if that same trial happened today, comparing Seinfeld‘s infamous four to the other characters in TVLand… I’d say they’d only get a mere slap on the wrist. If that. A warning. Maybe a fine. But not prison.

Ever notice how the word “reward” and “retard” are only one letter off?

What a fucking terrible typo to make.

No one wants to be offered a $10,000 Retard.

This morning on my way to work, I took a cab. And on my ride in, we stopped at a light near Broadway and Houston.

There, I watched a homeless man reach into the garbage. He found a spray canister of Axe. He sprayed it into the air, found the odor offensive and tossed it.

Then he found a loaf of french bread, tried to bite it, but couldn’t because it was too stale. He tossed the bread back and kept walking.

The bread I can totally understand. The Axe… i just find hilarious. What would the bad 1970s headline be for THAT ad?

“I’d rather smell like urine than smell like this crap.”