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KITTEN VACUUM! [Oct. 14th, 2005|06:07 pm]
themonkeybear has a post with a picture of a car vacuum with a ridiculous amount of patriotic imagery on it. This is the latest in a series of pictures of things showing commercialization of nationalism.

I stopped and thought about the picture for a minute, and I concluded: yep, I'm still boggled.

My brain just doesn't react to this kind of advertising the way that they clearly expect people's brains to react. Obviously, the images are supposed to make me feel good about the idea of using the machine to vacuum my car, and therefore more likely to spend my money.

And instead, my brain thinks, "Dude. That's just dumb."

So I thought about, well, what if it had different pictures on it? What if the pictures were appealing to me in a way that eagles-plus-exploding-flags aren't? What if it had, say, a picture of a really good-looking shirtless guy?

Okay, first, I'm disturbed by the idea that someone might feel about flags the way that I feel about cute bears, but regardless, I think I'd ogle the vacuum, but feel awkward about doing it in public -- so that's no good.

All right, what about something else. Something without social baggage. How 'bout, oh, transformers?

And I think my thought process would be: "Hey, cool, Transformers! ...on a car vacuum? Dude. That's just dumb."

The only thing I can think of that would work would be imagery that was appealing, but also made such a big deal about being non-vacuum related that it was funny. Like, "ZOMG cute kittens you must vacuum your car because KITTENS ARE CUTE THEY MAKE IT MORE CLEANER! KITTEN VACUUM!!!"

That's a machine I'd be proud to put my 75 cents into.

...I'm a bad consumer, aren't I?

[User Picture]From: zalena
2005-10-14 07:10 pm (UTC)
My brother and I went to an exhibit on banned political cartoons at the Cartoon Art Museum several years ago. It was shortly after 9-11, so there was all sorts of cartoon that never ran because they were considered "in poor taste." In many cases I agreed.

However, there was one cartoon featuring a Patriotic Bathroom that we both found hilarious, in part because we've actually seen things like toilet paper with American flags on it. People buy it to be patriotic, but use it in a way that is decidedly unpatriotic.

I have to admit I'm getting over being a sucker for Sanrio products. Blame it on my underpriveleged childhood when Sanrio products (which were very hard to get ahold of in Gunnison, CO) were THE status symbol on the playground. Did you know there's a Hello Kitty toaster that actually TOASTS the image of Hello Kitty onto the toast? Where does that fit into your hierarchy of useless product decoration?
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[User Picture]From: dr_tectonic
2005-10-14 07:14 pm (UTC)
There are Hello Kitty household appliances that do EVERYTHING Hello Kitty.
You'll have to go to the Sanrio anchor store in San Francisco someday. It's... kinda scary, actually.

Hello Kitty is cool as long as it is completely inappropriate.
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[User Picture]From: zalena
2005-10-14 07:36 pm (UTC)
There was a Hello Kitty store in NY, too, which I always insisted on dragging inappropriate people too.

I always thought the Hello Kitty vibrators were completely inappropriate.
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[User Picture]From: 0nce_and_future
2005-10-14 08:14 pm (UTC)
"Personal Massagers"

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