Archive for March, 2010


reset button #3: (march) madness.

March 19, 2010

During my morning and nightly commutes, when I’m not listening to my rock ‘n’ roll records, I usually flip between NPR and one of two sports radio stations. I know sports radio is mind-numbing, and I can usually only hang in for up to 15-20 minutes at a clip, but I’m a football junkie and the offseason is as busy as the regular season, plus my Chicago Blackhawks are having an interesting season, so I’ve been listening. Anyway, a few weeks ago I heard a radio ad that actually caught my attention. Which is surprising, because I flip at the first sign of a commercial 99.9% of the time and radio ads are the worst of the worst. Bad actors doing bad voice overs mixed with bad broadcasters, bad scripts, and especially on sports radio, D-grade beer commercial humor hammering you directly over the head. This one caught me though.  I don’t think I’d ever previously heard a radio ad for vasectomies.

The hook, basically, is, get your vasectomy on the Wednesday before the early rounds of the NCAA basketball tournament. You get snipped, no big deal cool guy, and you then get to stay off your feet and chill for a few days. May as well spend it lying around watching hoops all day, right, dude? The urologists office doing your outpatient procedure even throws in a frozen bag of peas (get it!) and a voucher  for a free pizza at a local chain they partnered with.  Free pizza and some dick joke lolz with your outpatient sterilization is the shit! What health care reform U.S.A.? Who cares what it costs! I said basketball and free pizza, motherfuckers!

A personal hero of mine, the great stand-up comedian and social critic, Bill Hicks, once said, “If you’re in marketing, kill yourself…” That one always hit close to home and hurt a bit since I’ve participated in more than my fair share of  marketing meetings over the years. Though, it doesn’t mean Bill wasn’t 100% right.

Just hearing an advertisement for a surgical procedure that causes sterilization should be surreal enough. The fact that it’s tied to a major sporting event and that it fits right in, being plugged with the same humor and tone as ads for mass-produced beer brands, used cars, fast food corporations and discount men’s suits, is downright disturbing. I can’t decide if this is the most brilliant marketing initiative ever or if it is just another goose step in the long march to the bottom.  Somewhere, someone wearing a suit, sitting in a cool looking chair in a mansion is laughing at us while crazy middle-class Christians are protesting health care reform because they are worried that tax dollars might get used to pay for some gal’s abortion.

We live in a country that markets vasectomies via basketball tournaments and we have people in government that find it their duty to stop poor people from getting affordable medical care, abortions included. So Funny. So fucking sad.

But let’s not lose sight of what is most important. Who don’t like ’em some free pizza?

Right now, somewhere in America, a freshly sterile man with a swollen nutsack and a half-thawed bag of peas shoved up his crotch is sitting on the couch enjoying some awesome insurance covered pain meds as he watches highlights of today’s NCAA tournament hoops action on Sportscenter. He’s thinking of how long he has to wait before he gets to bang his wife again now that he doesn’t have to worry about having another kid, a dirty plate of half-eaten pizza crusts at his side. His office pool bracket is still looking pretty damn good and he’s got two more days of games yet to go this weekend. Hell yeah!

Uncool and Heavy’s official and fully potent NCAA Final 4 picks:

Kansas over Pitt
Duke over Wisconsin

Kansas over Duke


reset button #2: angels are watching over me.

March 8, 2010

She was fixing her hair while driving her beige colored Mercury during the morning rush. As she neared the red light at the railroad crossing she cut over in front of me without signaling, one hand on the wheel, one hand tossing her hair as she used her rear view mirror to check her look and the distance between us simultaneously. It was an acceptable cut-off for the time and place. I’ve experienced much worse. But it was a cut-off nonetheless. If I don’t brake fairly hard, I hit her. She decided that it’d be worth it not to be stuck behind that semi at the red light. They always get off so slow. I’d likely stop in time if she cut me off. She went for it. She was right. At the red light she doesn’t miss a beat and continues fussing in the rear view mirror. I can tell that she is putting on make up. It was then that I noticed her license plate holder. It said, ‘Angels Are Watching Over Me.’

Angels are watching over me. It’s nice to know when I’m within a few feet of someone who is completely batshit insane. I appreciate the not leaving it to mystery.  In this case, I was  driving right behind a person that apparently believes that there are supernatural beings keeping an eye on and protecting her. And that these invisible bodyguards are full of love and all things good and provide her strength, comfort and guidance. And that they are not spirits, but angels. I’m going to go ahead and assume that she believes that these angels hang out in heaven and know God and Jesus and have wings.  These angels watch over her as she nonchalantly cuts me off in heavy traffic as we  slow to a photo enforced red light railroad crossing in suburban northwestern Illinois. They watch over her on this apparently rushed bad hair day morning as she applies her lipstick.

Angels are watching over me. Angels, plural. More than one angel is watching over her, protecting her from whatever is going to possibly do her harm on any given day. One angel would not suffice. She has determined that she must have multiple angels assigned to watching over her life. What numerous supernatural spirit world dwelling invisible winged entities can do that one angel couldn’t just supernaturally handle them self, I don’t really know,  but I gather that if you’re the type of person that puts on makeup while driving and believes in angels, you probably aren’t spending a lot of time thinking things through.

Angels are watching over me. Stop and think for a moment about the process that puts a ‘Angels Are Watching Over Me’ license plate holder on the car you drive to work and back.

  1. You really, really, truly believe that angels exist and that they are watching over you.
  2. You have to decide that the fact that angels are watching over you is not something you’d rather keep to yourself.
  3. You have to somehow acquire the knowledge that a ‘Angels Are Watching Over Me’ license plate holder is something that, in addition to the angels themselves, exists.
  4. You have to decide to exchange hard-earned dollars for said ‘Angels Are Watching Over Me’ license plate holder.
  5. You have to get a screwdriver, screw off your license plate and then screw it back on with your new ‘Angels Are Watching Over Me’ license plate holder attached.

Only someone completely batshit insane would take time out of their life to follow steps 1-5 completely. I know, because she was right in front of me this morning. Though, angels can watch over you too, for, as it turns out, only $4.98 + $5.95 shipping.

I got to wondering about step #3 above. Where the heck does one obtain an ‘Angels Are Watching Over Me’ license plate holder? So I googled it and oddly enough, you can get one at lots of places. But I’m going to go with the first result that turned up.  No shit! Look for my new site, coming soon, by the way. This was the exact license plate holder I saw this morning.

Just one of the many license plate holders that can be purchased and displayed to let the rest of the world know that you are batshit insane.

Christian marketing/branding is a whole other series of posts I’d like to get into at some point. I’ve got 200+ channels of Direct TV. You see some crazy scary late night infomercials on those Jesus channels. The slap chop ain’t shit compared to what these assholes are selling. Anyway…for now I want to stick to the lady that is telling me that she is watched from high by multiple angels as she puts on makeup and finger-styles her hair while cutting me off at a railroad crossing on a busy street during the suburban Chicago area’s morning rush hour traffic.  If those angels were real, I’d hope they’d tell you to fucking pay attention to the road and to respect the safety of all of God’s children and to not cut-off the guy behind you so that you don’t potentially hurt  somebody with your subpar driving skills. Those angels, if they were real, should watch over you when you’re not yet in your car and wake you up a little bit fucking earlier so that you’d have your shit together so that you wouldn’t have to put your makeup on and fix your hair up while you’re driving. Those angels, if they were real, should convince you that it is stupid to multitask in rush hour traffic while operating a motor vehicle. Those angels, if they were real, could maybe send you a message from the sweet beyond to maybe live in the now and then maybe you wouldn’t be such a weak person and feel the need to use your license plate holder as a conduit for taking no responsibility for the cause and effect of your actions here in this little thing called life.

And I mean, really, is there a more arrogant thing to say within the confines of the space granted on a license plate holder than ‘Angels Are Watching Over Me?’ Why not just say, ”I kinda have magic powers and everything is better after I die anyway, so fuck you.”

My license plate holder only tells people which professional  football team I want to win more than all of the others. I got it for free. My putting it on my car doesn’t make my team win. I understand this. I’m pretty sure its the same thing with angels. Being a fan of angels doesn’t necessarily make them watching over you so.  Next time you cut me off in traffic, lady, I’m going to hit you. I’m not going to be reprimanded for being late for work because of a traffic accident, I could use a new front bumper anyway, and I want the angels that are watching over you to take a gander as you get whiplash.