[NOTE: this is actually two image files, upper and lower, and you need to click on each one for enlargement. From The Saturday Evening Post for October 23, 1965.]
Sorry I didn't get this one up in time for Fourth of July--but then again, WU hadn't debuted then!
In any case, this ad is very confused. It seems to be appealing to the mystical vibe of the ever-iconic American War of Independence, what with the flintlock pistol and all. But then again, Sexy Car-crawling Girl is patently an attempt to attract the Pepsi Generation, those wild 'n' wacky "rebellious" kids, with their surfboards and long hair and love beads.
So who's supposed to want to buy a Polara? Mom and Pop Daughters-of-the-American-Revolution? Or little Janie Peace-Sign?
You've probably seen this girl before, though you may not remember where. Her name is Jennifer Anderson, but she's more popularly known as the Everywhere Girl.
Her rise to ubiquity started a few years ago when she agreed to do a photo shoot for a stock-photo agency. She didn't get paid much. It was a royalty-free assignment. She posed around Reed College, pretending to be a college student (even though she had never been to college herself). It was a one-day assignment. At the time, she didn't think it was a big deal.
But for some reason, the images of her taken during that shoot became some of the most popular stock photos ever. They've been used by Gateway, Dell, Hewlett Packard, Visa, the BBC, the US Navy, Microsoft, Greyhound Bus Lines, numerous textbook publishers, as well as a whole host of other businesses. Whenever advertisers want an image of an attractive young college student, they seem to turn to Everywhere Girl.
Here's a great example of Madison Avenue trying to a) make a problem that doesn't exist or is minimal into an overwhelming burden that only their product can alleviate and b) bring the vaunted "miraculous" power of scientists and scientific imagery into the marketing mix.
Did women in 1939--or ever--really ask their friends for a hygienic crotch alert?
Cruel, sadistic prison guards subjecting inmates to horrible excruciations. It's a sad practice as old as history. But seldom before today has the vile ritual reached such depths as reported in this story.
What exactly is the new nadir of torture? Here's the quote:
"Houghton also said that Botas and Viveiros forced him to watch a Burger King cartoon on his office computer and sing along to a jingle that accompanied the commercial. He said that all three officers laughed and 'were getting a kick out of it … that they could take advantage of me.'”
Oh, the humanity!
Recovering my senses, and getting over the evident confusion on the prisoner's part between "cartoon" and "commercial" (his mind is obviously shattered, after all), I had to ask, "Which Burger King commercial?" Not watching much TV, I'm unsure what's currently on the airwaves that might have registered on the radar of the abusive guards. But they were after all using a computer, presumably to visit YouTube. So I found five possible torture jingles.
Which one do you find most excruciating? Or do you have another candidate?
Let's suppose that you're a magazine named Playboy that encourages its readers to believe they can have lots of sex if they follow the advice of the magazine. Then you create another magazine in your empire called Games. You decide to advertise the latter in the former. And the theme of your ad is that anyone who reads the new magazine will not want sex anymore, even when a nubile young woman is thrusting herself upon the reader.
If only you had been reading Popular Mechanics magazine for February 1929! Then you could have purchased the same Purple Ray healing device that Wonder Woman uses! Okay, so it was a "Violet Ray." Same difference, right?
[From The Saturday Evening Post for December 16, 1967]
Whenever you put a giant woman in a skirt next to normal-sized people, the inevitable first thought engendered in the viewer is, "Can I see up her dress?" In this instance, the second thought is: "Is she going to pick up that car and use it as a marital aid?"
McAfee recently released the results of its S.P.A.M. experiment, which stands for "Spammed Persistently All Month." Fifty subjects volunteered to expose themselves to a month of intensive spamming.
When I first noticed this headline, I imagined some kind of Ludovician Aversion Therapy experiment -- subjects strapped into chairs, eyes taped open, forced to view endless screens of spam until they started drooling and screaming for it to stop.
Unfortunately, the experiment wasn't that colorful. Instead, the subjects were simply "given permission to go where most Internet users would not dare, in order to discover how much spam they would attract and what the effects would be." I'm guessing this means they signed up with AOL.
The result: "the participants from 10 countries received more than 104,000 spam e-mails throughout the course of the experiment. That's 2,096 messages each - the equivalent of approximately 70 messages a day."
That surprised me. I thought they'd get a LOT more spam. I estimate my spam filter traps at least 70 messages a day, and I'm not trying to get the stuff like they were.
Paul Di Filippo
Paul has been paid to put weird ideas into fictional form for over thirty years, in his career as a noted science fiction writer. He has recently begun blogging on many curious topics with three fellow writers at The Inferior 4+1.