Success in Advertising

Yesterday I was long winded. Today I will be brief because I have shit to do.

Well, brief-er.

More brief.

Already it’s not looking good for brevity.

Anyway, I skipped WTF Wednesday because I simply forgot. So I guess this is sort of a WTF Friday? I didn’t make it to the thrift store this week. The images from previous trips just aren’t speaking to me yet, so I’m going to talk about some images that I used to use as teaching tools about successfully conveying a message in advertising. I guess I could have just used the word rhetoric but this brevity thing…. I’m not so good at it.

I used to teach a class on rhetoric and composition and I’d use these images, not so much because they are excellent examples of successful advertising. It’s basically because I thought they were funny and I wanted to share them with friends. Since I had no friends, I would squeeze them into lesson plans so I could laugh with a group of people and feel like I was part of the 18 year old cool kids. I was their leader. I was the head cool kid just for a moment.

Come be a cool kid with me and look at this shit I brought….

I'm sure they're much better at sewing. I mean, how could they NOT be?

I’m sure they’re much better at sewing. I mean, how could they NOT be?

So I’m not going to speculate on who this person is. Okay, maybe a little speculating…. So I would like to believe these are English-as-second-language people. I refuse to believe that any native speaker would mutilate words like this. It’s possible though. Notice that only the Es are in cursive? And, yes, that is the way I’m pluralizing the letter E. Maybe it’d be easier to just make a list?

– Scribbled hastily on side of van in Pig’s Blood Red lipstick

– The letters A, R and T are capitalized with no apparent reason behind it.

– E and i are not capitalized. (Is there a Da Vinci Code type message here? Do they know where Jesus’s hemmed dress slacks are hidden?)

– Why, oh why, did they break up the word alteration? Why didn’t they just start writing 3 inches over? Why didn’t they wipe the lipstick off and try it again? If they wrote it in permanent marker… why in the fuck did they write it in permanent marker? On the side of their vehicle?? I’m seriously leaning Da Vinci on this. Are the Alterati an even more secret sect of the Illuminati? More secret because they’re not rich and they drive poorly tired mini vans? And because they sew stuff instead of do mean things to Taylor Swift at award ceremonies?

– And for the love of God why is there a comma after the phone number?? Every time I look at this I think that the phone number is someplace in Ontario. Why, yes! I DO live in 592-4783, Ontario! (Yeah, that one didn’t bring any laughs in the classroom either…)

And, just for your information, my students and I called the number once. It was out of service. The Alterati again have disappeared into the dark, hidden sweatshops of the world….

God, now I feel guilty! What if this was a cry for help? What if they are trapped somewhere, being forced to sew red carpet dresses for Hollywood’s elite Illuminati?

Or maybe they just got arrested. I took the photo in front of a flea market that the cops shut down because they were selling millions of dollars of knockoff designer purses.

I will always wonder, though— who ARE the Alterati?

So I’ve already broken my promise about brevity. I’m just going to say a few words on this next one because I don’t want to give anyone the impression I actually am trying to speak politically on the topic being advertised here…


I took this photo on my way home from work one day.

Read the sign. Just the words.

I know it is an anti-abortion ad.

I also know it’s unsuccessful but still successful. Either way you read it, it’s correct.

Abortion does stop a beating heart.

Abortion also, technically, could stop a beating.

It’s all in the perspective, I guess.

Happy Friday, everyone! 🙂