Tag Archives: are you serious

You’ll Never Learn

A while back I called out Mazda for showing a complete lack of perspective in one of their commercials.

They did it again, and this time the offense was even more egregious than calling a professional daredevil a “courageous thinker.”

They compared themselves to Bruce Lee, Frank Lloyd Wright…and Jackie Robinson.  Jack Roosevelt Robinson.

I wish I were kidding.

I went to the movies last night for the first time in a while to see Anchorman 2.  I don’t think I’ll write about it because…well, I mean, it is what it is.  But this, I can’t let go.

Mazda fancies itself as an innovative company.  Okay.  That’s fine.  But you have to know what you’re innovating here, and that’s cars.  Yes, they are important in today’s society, but literally every single car company in the world is also doing research and innovating new technologies.  It’s the only way for them to stay relevant.

To put together a longer-than-average commercial that takes itself super seriously with the intent of airing it before freaking Anchorman 2 is preposterous in and of itself, but to put yourself up there with those people?  Come on.  Is there anyone at this company who sees these things before they air?  Or at the ad agency?  Anyone?  Anywhere?

Mazda will never have the cultural significance of Bruce Lee.  They will never change the auto industry the way Frank Lloyd Wright changed architecture.  And they will never come close to even being in the same solar system of the significance and importance of Jackie Robinson.

On a positive note, even a ridiculous ad like this will make people talk about your company, and there is the old adage that any publicity is good publicity.  At the same time, if there is anyone out there that thinks this is a good ad – hey, I’ll even take anyone who doesn’t think it’s a ridiculously preposterous ad – please, stand up and be counted.

And then cash your check from Mazda, because clearly you must work for them.

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Workin’ at the Car Wash

This story is presented without comment.

Okay, no, I can’t not comment on something this stupid.  I have written before about the overall lack of institutional control at the NCAA.  I have absolutely no love for the organization, and will not hesitate to tell anyone who asks.

But this…this is ludicrous.

I’ll let you read the story, because summing it up without using expletives seems pretty bleeping impossible.

“Using university water.”  Oh.  Well, what about those student-athletes who shower after practice?  Are they entitled to that water, or is that an improper benefit?  And if they are, why is this poor young lady not entitled to use her allotment of “university water” as she sees fit?

If that sounds ridiculous, well, it’s because it is.

The NCAA very well may not exist in a decade.  If you ask me, that’s about 12 years too late.

Don’t Drink the Water

We had a big employee lunch event at work today.  It’s an annual thing that comes in different forms, but is the same every year: everybody, come eat moderately decent food, come get a ticket for a less-than-inspiring raffle prize, and come spend time sitting with people you’ve never met and won’t see until the same event next year.  Morale-building at its finest.

These sorts of things go on everywhere, and in reality, it’s nice that they try.  But sometimes, the menu…okay, so in the past, there have been burgers and chicken and hot dogs.  This year, there were salads (a couple of which really stretched the definition of “salad”), grilled chicken breast (which means I made a chicken caesar salad because I’m like the food version of MacGyver), pulled pork, and black bean burgers.  Well, three out of four ain’t bad.

There is always a dessert area, which I forewent this year in favor of the Mister Softee truck, and of course your standard coolers of beverages.  Well, they’re more like tanks, really.  I noticed the three water coolers and the one brown “wild card” cooler that they always have at things like these.  It could be anything in there, hot or cold.  Anyway, you know what I’m talking about.

So I put the food on my plate and went to get a drink.  Some nice, cold water would be perfect.  I noticed that one of the coolers, however, had a ton of lemon slices in the bottom of it.  Okay.  But then the second one had a pink tint to it, and I saw strawberries and blueberries floating around.  Well, I guess the third one is the…wait, what?  Cucumbers?!?

I read the cards.  “Lemon-infused” water.  “Berry-infused” water.  “Cucumber-infused” water.  Um…what?  There is no “infusing” going on here.  It was, at best, lemon-soaked water.  At best.

I’m sure lots of people enjoyed the options.  Lots of people put lemon in their water at restaurants.  I see all sorts of that kind of stuff at stores.  Cucumber, though?  A cucumber is like 84% water anyway; “infusing” water with cucumber is like infusing milk with cheese.

So for those people who enjoy that stuff, great.  I’m sure they appreciated it.  But what about the rest of us?  Where was the ice-infused water?  I can’t believe I’m about to put this adjective in front of it, but why couldn’t I get a glass of plain water?  It is literally the easiest thing to serve, assuming the event is being held on Earth.

Instead, I went with option four, the mystery tank, which was apparently full of sugar-infused iced tea.  Holy crap.  No dessert needed after that.

Oh, who am I kidding?  Of course you need dessert when the Mister Softee truck is parked in the lot.

Without a Dream in My Heart

Today was the FA Cup final.  The oldest continuously-held cup contest in the sport, it’s one of the marquee events of the football/soccer season.

I won’t go into details, because BOOOOOOOOOO, but my favorite club, Manchester City, lost to Wigan Athletic, 1-0, on a pretty nice headed goal in stoppage time.  There is no shame in losing, but when the team that beats you is in very real danger of being relegated next weekend, well, then there’s some shame.

For whatever reason, a per peeve of mine came up today.  I will occasionally talk to people who aren’t soccer fans about my affinity for the game.  From time to time, I refer to the game as “football,” without even thinking about it.  I don’t do it to sound snobby or pretentious; I do it because most of the coverage I read and watch focuses on the English Premier League, and over there, they call it football.  It just kind of sneaks into my lexicon.

Almost inevitably, if I don’t stop myself and clarify that I am referring to the game they call “soccer,” someone will say, in a tone that is equal parts inquisitive, mocking, and condescending, “do you mean football or ‘futbol’?”

No, I mean football.  It’s an English word, not Spanish.  I actually find it a little offensive.  Believe it or not, ignorant guy at the bowling alley, there are people who both speak English AND enjoy soccer.  And I don’t hear anyone asking if I mean “fussball” or “calcio,” either.  Why is it acceptable to pretend you’re suddenly a Spanish speaker?  Why not throw in a little German or Italian?  Oh, because you think soccer is just for people in Spanish-speaking countries.

Well, it’s not.  And it IS, in fact, possible for someone thousands of miles away to be bummed out over a club’s cup final defeat.

There’s Just No Place For a Street Fighting Man

Last night, Zack Greinke of the Los Angeles Dodgers threw a pitch that hit Carlos Quentin of the San Diego Padres.  Quentin didn’t like it, and charged the mound.  The two had a strange-looking collision, both going shoulder-first and kind of bouncing off of on another.  Then, it was on.

Greinke left the game after that; we learned later that he wasn’t ejected, but injured.  That’s right, the guy who just signed a six-year, $147 million-dollar contract had suffered a broken collarbone.  He’ll have surgery tomorrow and be out for eight weeks.

Wait.  What?

No one gets hurt in these bench-clearing brawls (not no one in a literal sense, but for the most part).  Now one of the game’s highest-paid players will miss two months.  But I guess he deserves it, right?  You can’t go hitting guys like that.

Except it was a 3-2 pitch that got away from Greinke in the sixth inning of a one-run game.  For those of you who don’t know much about baseball, I assure you: this was not intentional.  Pitchers do hit batters on purpose on occasion; this was not one of them.

Greinke has hit Quentin three times now, but that was the first since 2009.  I’ve seen a couple stories say they had “history,” but it seems like the only history between them was that Carlos Quentin is a hothead that thinks Zack Greinke is out to get him.

On the whole, baseball players – and athletes in general – have a little bit of an over-inflated view of themselves out on the diamond.  Quentin probably felt like his manhood was going to be questioned if he didn’t do something about getting hit.  He had words with Greinke, and Greinke probably ran his mouth right back, and then before you know it, WE’RE PLAYIN’ THE FEUD! (hat tip to whichever SportsCenter anchor used to say that)

Everything that happened is entirely Carlos Quentin’s fault.  He’ll undoubtedly be suspended, but nowhere near as long as Greinke’s injury will sideline him.  That’s unfortunate.  If I was the Commissioner of Major League Baseball (side note: just tell me where to send me résumé, owners), Quentin would be suspended for at least a month, and would be fined half of the exact amount that Zack Greinke will earn while on the disabled list.  The Padres would be fined the same amount as well.  That would teach players to think before they recklessly put themselves and each other in harm’s way, and would put some responsibility on the teams to answer for the behavior of their employees.

Alas, Quentin will no doubt be back long before Greinke.  So will the Dodgers-Padres rivalry; the teams meet in Los Angeles beginning Monday.

If I was the trainer for the Padres, I’d probably stock up on ice packs.