Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Fer crying out loud....poppet!

In the US, there's a legal requirement of "truth in advertizing".** I don't know why they bother with this as we all know TV ads stretch the truth to say the very least. There's one running here at the moment, which paints such an untrue domestic picture, I'm considering writing in.

It's for Dawn stain remover. (Dawn usually only makes washing-up liquid, so this was great news to me. Stain removers are my friends.) Anyway, a gorgeous, young-ish mother comes down the stairs into the kitchen. (NB. There are no walls or doors in this country.) She is greeted by a little girl about three or four years old, who is sitting at the breakfast island, eating something in a bowl - alone. Now, apart from this being a safety issue, (choking, grabbing knives, climbing around kitchen cabinets, - you know the type of thing) how many of us leave a little one unattended - with food?
Only yesterday my four year old decided I hadn't put enough milk in his bowl, and attempted to top it up from his cup. Inevitably, he missed the bowl entirely and poured it onto the table which then dripped all over his lap. Of course, this was the morning we were running a tad late, but his trousers were soaked through. His bedroom is also on the top floor of a tall house, so "running to his room to get a change of clothing" is a five minute Olympic event. When I'm not in the room, he usually decides he wants something other than what's on the menu, and raids the fridge or pantry for something tastier. That too, usually ends up on the floor. (It's no wonder we have the Durham Light Infantry of ants in the kitchen at the moment.)

So then the little ad girl jumps down from the chair, and runs over to her mother, who is wearing gleaming white jeans. Now, tell me this, who wears white jeans a) for hanging around the house, and b) with messy four year olds around? If I ever wear white, my kids aren't allowed in the same room with me. Mind you I should ban myself from being around me too as the last time I wore a certain white jacket, I was reaching for my water glass (honest) at a dinner, and caught the edge of my neighbour's red wine glass with my sleeve. In one of those slow-motion moments, the glass gently lay down on its side, tipping its entire contents straight down my sleeve.

Back to the mother and girl scene. The whole point of this ad is that the little girl hugs her mother round the knees, and plants a big cocoa-looking kiss, thus staining the white jeans. I will overlook the fact that she is feeding such sugary rubbish to her child first thing in the morning, and even the fact that the lip marks seemed to have originated from an orong-utan. Instead the focus of my outrage is the mother's totally unbelievable reaction. She kneels down to her daughter's eye level, and instead of issuing the usual "For goodness' sake these are clean on", smiles patiently and rubs noses with her princess. Have you ever rubbed noses with your children? Why do the people who makes TV ads persist with the impression that this is the ideal way of showing love? We're not puppies.

More to the point, what would your reaction have been to a big stain on your fresh white jeans? I don't think I can print what I would have said.

** This in no way, under any circumstances, constitutes legal advice. (Just covering myself.)

23 comments:

  1. Yep, this would probably make it onto my list of all time annoying adverts (see blog posts of past).

    Who wears white jeans who isn't stuck in an 80s time warp?

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  2. Ha - just read the relevant post on your blog. Very funny.
    I found another "potential" piece of idiocy for my next post. I'm just trying to get a specific link to work, but it's one of those "There's one born every minute" stories.

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  3. No. We're not puppies, or eskimos. Whoever dreamt up that ad concept is probably the type of bloke who gives his wife/mother/girlfriend a new hoover or ironing board for Christmas.

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  4. I thought the same thing when I saw that ad - but I have to admit to wearing a lot of white (this is Southern California after all).

    Bleach is my friend.

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  5. i bet that tv kid can't push cheerios up her nose.

    i think we should start a campaign for real family meal time - though somedays within 10 seconds round here it might look like an ad for the jerry springer show.

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  6. Well obviously, if it were me, I would have smiled gently, returned to my walk-in closet, pulled out another pair of white 7 for all mankind jeans in size 0, and got on with my day.

    Right.

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  7. Oh Boy, how we love those stereotypes. White jeans. Size zero Yummy Mummy. Darling little girl who is not inclined to drop or
    smash anything, or damage herself. And an endlessly patient Mother. I bet the bloke who wrote that one has never spent a day at home with the kids. M :)

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  8. We have an ad here for sofas where the kids are bouncing madly on the new sofa and the parents come in, arms around each other and smile fondly at them. Why don't they roar and threaten to cut their legs off like normal people?
    great post.

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  9. Ahh, one of my pet peeves. Was totally shocked by the adverts here having lived in socialist Norway for so long. How come American men are never seen on TV cleaning the loo, washing the floor or removing grass stains from their trousers?
    My female off-shore welding friends would be horrified!

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  10. well I must say I'm a bit shocked by your hostility. I always wear white, I can't recall ever losing my temper, and rubbing noses is a well-known gesture of bonding and forgiveness (not to mention acceptance) originating from Eskimoland. (did i blow it by writing Eskimoland?)
    Pigx

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  11. The sad thing is that I almost wrote "Eskimos" and then the American PC chip in my brain stopped me. I have been in this country too long. (And now I'm going to get deported when this is found by Dubya.)

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  12. What a sad advert! I would raise the roof if my white jeans got a kid's sloppy kiss mark on them or any one's sloppy kiss for that matter. What the heck am I talking about ... white jeans for!

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  13. OH my I have just seen the ad....you make me laugh!

    Daffodilly

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  14. Been there, done that!!!

    Just keep smiling ....

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  15. Hmm, white clothing? No I don't think I've heard of it...grey maybe, or stained, but no. Nothing white since my first child was born 15 years ago.

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  16. Totally with you on this one! How come a chocolatey kiss marks the jeans but the hands she presumably holds her mother's leg with are clean?

    Not possible. (I haven't seen the ad so presume the hands touch the jeans).

    Great post. Again!

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  17. Great post .. perfect imagery .. and I will tell you what I'd say .. Expletive deleted

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  18. ROFLOL white jeans...I don't even own a pair of white jeans let alone wear them to prance around the house in...yeah advertising globally should follow Canada's standards and that's it!

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  19. My sister duped me into buying white jeans in Gap specifically because she thought they would shout 'Yummy Mummy' on me. I wore them to a family picnic. My son patted me on the knee to get my attention. He had just eaten a tandoori- flavoured chicken drumstick...

    The jeans are now in the back of the wardrobe and my sister is banned from shopping trips.

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  20. I popped over from David's to read your 'post of the day' and I'm glad I did. You are so right there's no way anyone with two brain cells to rub together would wear white round a kid, it's just a disaster waiting to happen! Great post, thanks for the laugh.

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  21. White -and just about any other color of the rainbow for that matter if I am wearing it -always manages to have on it somewhere, a bit of whatever I've had to eat. And it never fails but what if I have dark clothes on, I spill something light colored to make a stain; light colored clothes of course always attract things like really heavy-duty tomato based items or dark brown gravies, etc. You get the picture, I'm sure!

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  22. You can imagine what I'd say if someone messed up my white jeans - but it's probably unprintable!

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  23. I know the advert you describe, and yes, it is the most irritating 30 seconds of the evening.

    No-one rubs noses - you're right - and even if they did, no-one would rub noses with a child who had a brown chocolatey food-covered face.

    I'm with you all the way.

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