Posted by: Chris | July 3, 2006

7-3-06

Tomorrow is July 4. That means two things: tomorrow, I will be comforting my Weimaraner all evening because she is afraid of the sound of fireworks, and my internship is halfway over. That is sad. I love my cube (although at times, I feel like I need to get up and do laps around this 5th-floor track), and I have been completely empowered by my badge (see previous posts if you have no idea what I am talking about). Despite the fact that I am now in the autumn of my internship, I am feeling pretty good: my manager left me a project to do while she is gone today-ah, glorious empowerment! Not only that, but I was able to do some things for my manager’s boss last Friday. Sure, I was a little nervous about it-you see, the thing that they don’t realize is that with every project they ask me to do, I am filled with this strange vacillation wherein on one side, I think, “I can’t do this-I have no idea what I’m doing” and on the other side I think, “This is what I’ve been learning for the past 1 1/2 years, and I will not stop until this is finished.” So far, they have not asked me to come into their offices and shut the door-never a good sign. And so, the transfer continues.

The Genre of “Creepy Advertising”
It was not until I began my graduate work that I realized the significant difference between marketing and advertising, and any marketer or advertiser who may read this blog (and neither my wife nor my best friend are; therefore, I suppose we could strike those last words altogether, as these two individuals comprise my entire readership) should be able to determine easily that I am not in advertising. (Not to suggest that that I am a wiz at marketing yet either; give me a break! I’m just an Intern!) It is in light of my lack of advertising knowledge that I ask this question: what’s up with the creepy painted wood characters in commercials these days? I am speaking of the Quaker Oats commercials, with the creepy Quaker who is carted around an elementary school in a wagon; the Burger King commercials, with the creepy painted wood mask that is worn by a King of Burgers who shows up outside a patron’s bedroom window and even in one soul’s bed; and the Tractor Supply Company’s commercials which consist of 2 country-style painted wood fellows who face dilemmas that really don’t seem like dilemmas to me at all. I am considering adding these painted wood characters to my short list of phobias (see my previous post about my one notable phobia). How is it that this new genre of advertising is seen as effective? (Perhaps I can answer my own question by acknowledging the fact that I am perpetuating these companies’ messages in this very blog!) Nevertheless, they freak me out, and in my opinion, they are not even in the same ballpark as Big Buckin’ Chicken-also a little creepy, but not to the extent that the painted wood characters are.

I end this post with a couple of annoying spelling errors (using the term loosely in the second case) that I am seeing more and more these days: definately and insure. The first problem is obvious. The second problem is tougher because the word “insure” is a real word-not like the non-word “definately,” which requires no further discussion. Regarding ensure and insure, I’ll admit, I’m being a tad strict-even the American Heritage Dictionary concedes that the two words may be interchanged. However, it’s not a bad idea to limit the use of “insure” to financial matters (as most dictionaries will suggest) and to use the “e-” variety when you are referring to taking steps to make sure that something happens. And by the way, there is no d in congratulations.

Enjoy the 4th. God Bless America.

Chris Posey
Intern

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