Getting to know America — 39 Comments

  1. That is the core principle of advertising. A product must be sold to make a profit, or at least break even.

    How do you sell a product?

    A) Make it seem like everyone else has/wants it, and you’re missing out by not having it;
    B) Show people having a good time with the product and say how you’re missing out by not having it ‘here’.

    The latter is what you’re referring to and is a common advertising tactic. And besides, marketing people are a crazy bunch anyway.

  2. You can do both ‘A’ and ‘B’ by saying the French/German/Spanish/Italians etc etc. So why America?

    It smacks of the infamous Harney crack – “I’d rather look to Boston than to Brussels”.

    As I have said so many times before – “Thank God for the mute button”

  3. Seems like Grannymar’s grass is greener… you’re attracting the right sort of friends.. Brian with his home-brewing, and Grannymar with her home-growing!!

  4. German Engineering
    Old-World Charm
    Direct from Italy to your table
    Old-World Engineering
    European Innovation
    Known for years in Sweden, now available to you
    Imported from france
    built with the precision of a Swiss watch
    British craftmanship
    Italian design

    Geez!!! I hate advertisers.

  5. from my experience the best thing an american advertiser could do is hint that the product has some link to ireland. those people are thirsty as hell for some of the old country. also, besides uk and ireland, i wouldn’t imagine there’s a people in europe who would think something is better made or more valuable because it is associated with the states – opposite is true, going on what my suave, chain-smoking mates from mainland europe say.

  6. So why do we have this hang-up in Ireland that if its American, it has to be great?

    I’m thinking of migrating to join your suave, chain-smoking mates!!!

  7. oh good question. do you want a rant about cultural imperialism, how 95% of films in Irish cinemas are American, the Irish music media are hos to the U.S music corporation pimps and our television is bogged down with repeats of syndicated tv shows like friends?

    because you just got one.

    not sure my buddies will accept you old timer. but i’d like to think you can fight your own corner, smoking pipes and drinking cafe au fucking lait while sweating it out on your doorstep in your arran sweater. keep the faith.

    – pp

  8. Don’t even get me started with music!!
    The british invasion ver. 14.21.1
    and if I hear about another jazz-fusion-rock-classical-celtic rooted ginger girl with an unpronuonceable first or last name playing a harp in front of some never-before-heard-of string ensemble with an electric guitarist, I’ll just sigh again and turn the dial.
    How many more celtic-punk-metal-rock bands do we need? Don’t get me wrong I love Flogging Molly but how many more FM clones do we need?
    I won’t even start in on the one hit wonder Australian bands who flitter through here and are forgotten as soon as another washes up on our shores.
    Grannymar got it right. It’s all about the grass.

  9. Brian, chill out dude. I’m for an Irish and UK music invasion. Anything is better than this homie – rap/hip hop – crap I hear on a daily basis!

    Also, I wouldn’t mind seeing a few more Irish films in my local theatre.

    And, bring on the Ginger girls! 🙂

    Thanks for the link Grandad.

  10. Grandad,

    No one has even mentioned the advertising that has brought our American automobile Industry to its knees.

    All we’ve ever heard for the last 30 years is how WONDERFUL Japanese cars were. Much better that American crap!! They said it so often that a lot of people here believed it and right now, Toyota is the best selling car in the States.

    Young professionals used to but Cadillacs or Lincolns and now you are nobody without A lEXUS

    Thousands of former auto workers are working in fast food places because of the Japanese propaganda about their cars. And, oh yeah! the wonderful European styling of the cars.

    Fords and Chevys and other American cars are just as dependable as their Japanese rivals but it will take another advertising campaign to swing the tide back to General Motors or Chrysler and have our people wake up and see the Dollars leaving our country for Japan.

  11. Nancy,
    I have to disagree with you, sorry, but I must.
    American cars are junk. Every metric used to measure performance and longevity states that GM and Ford are at the bottom of the list. I have owned Ford Ganadas and Chevy Citations, F150’s and S-10’s, RamVans and Econolines. In 1993 I went out to buy an American car. I bought a Suzuki Samurai. I felt I got the most bang for my buck. I drove it for 11 wonderful, fun filled years before it fell apart. March 2006, I wanted to buy another American car. I bought a Honda CRV and again I felt like I got more for my dollar. Just recently I read a report of amount of repairs over a period of time and the 10 year stat. had Toyota and Honda on top and GM, Ford and Hyundai on the bottom. I know so many folk who are still driving 10 year old Jap cars and I know NOONE who drives an American car, that long, from new.
    I don’t like admitting this but…….
    BTW, where are you in PA?

  12. It’s definitely the grass.

    Oh and I agree with you about the American beer. Tastes like piss.

  13. Brian,
    I am on my 5th Ford and typically drive them for over 200,000 miles with very few problems.

    We had a 1995 Ford Country Squire wagon with 275,000 carefree miles on it when we decided to buy a new Ford or Mercury. We loved the old Squire so much we had a hard time parting with it so decided it should go out in a blaze of glory.
    We donated it to our local volunteer Fire dept and they locked all the doors and windows and wrecked it so the firemen could practice using “The jaws of Life.”

    Not long after that a real accident happened on the turnpike and the fellows knew exactly how to operate their equipment and some lives were saved.

    So, our good old Ford did go out in a blaze of glory.

    Today I drive a Mercury and have had it for 4 years with NO service except for State Inspections. My husband drives a Ford Free Style and likes it very much. I would never buy a foreign car when I can get such a good American built car and keep the money and the jobs here.

    I live in 26 miles NW of Philadelphia.

    Grandad, Pardon us for taking up so much space on YOUR blog. Sorry.

  14. One hit wonder Australian bands . . that’s got my attention!
    Lets see there was . . .um . . . and . . . Fwooooaaar!

    I agree with Brian on the cars, I drive a 14 year old Honda Accord but that’s bye the bye . . .

    Now now children . . stop your arguing, it’s all about globalisation . . .we need to start learning Chinese, they’re the next great superpower or aren’t you people over in the west paying attention!

    Ace post by the way! Angsty bunch you are.

  15. Because you haven’t dropped in before. [welcome, by the way].

    As a matter of interest, is Australia to the east or west of Ireland?

  16. The main thing is that Ferrero Rocher have stuck to their roots. Oooh, monsieur, with these Rochers, you are really spoiling us.

  17. If I were at The Ambassador’s Party, I’d take my Ferrero Rocher from the bottom of the pile. I’d love to see that lot collapse on the floor!!

  18. I once said that Americans were stupid, but I took that back. Maybe I’ll take that back!!

    It’s probably some American getting rid of nuclear waste in a clever manner.

    P.S. It wasn’t me. I was the mad one. And the intro was Jefferson on a high dose of Helium by the sound of it!

  19. Hiya Grandad!

    Stumbled onto your little blog and have enjoyed my “‘poke ’round”. I am an American married to a Brit. Lived in England for two years and then made our way back to the States. I am fascinated by your observations!

    I had to comment on this post in particular. As Brian so accurately pointed out, American advertiser make their products more “posh” which they believe translates into more “marketable” by adding a British accent. Here in the States, we have a Cockney gecko(lizard) selling us car insurance, a plummy party-goer pushing alcohol, and even ads for women’s sanitary products narrated in the Queen’s English.

    I think it stems from America’s fascination and ignorance with/of “the other”. However, from your narratives it seems that our country isn’t alone in the believing that someone we need an “endorsement” to tell us to make the right choice.

    Cheers, Kimberly

  20. Welcome, Kimberly!

    It is a very strange phenomenon all right. I still say the strangest of the lot is trying to sell Guinness to the Irish using New York as a backdrop [a Black Drop against the backdrop?]

    I have a policy of trying to avoid any product I have seen advertised [I’m beginning to starve] but I have to make an exception for Guinness. Principles can only go so far……

  21. Hey Deborah,

    Is it too late to get 20 bags of the dirt? And 5 0r 6 bags of shamrock seeds?

    Let me know where to send my check.. If I pay extra,can I get it faster?

    Grandad, you don’t know what you’ve started here.

  22. Grandad, it’s a global perspective. We think we’re north of Eire because Oz is really on top of the globe. Those damn manufacturers keep assembling them upside down. We’re realy up over, not down under.

    You northernhemispherians however have the gaul to think we’re south east. Our only salvation is that we can’t be the asshole of the world because New Zealand is even further south . . .I guess that makes us the . . . *nup, not going there*

  23. Don’t be foolish Baino. Everyone knows we’re at the top. Otherwise we’d fall off.

    As a matter of interest, [and I always wanted to ask this] how do you manage living upside down? Doesn’t your beer fall on the ceiling all the time? Does smoke flow down the chimney?

  24. After the consolidation of Eu with unified currency, parliament and court it has become one large and economically powerful nation. Europe has always been known for sophistication and style in the USA, every American worth his/her salt knows it. So advertisers are playing the new music now…

  25. Grandad, we have suction caps on our shoes, vaccum toilets and drink beer through a straw from a water bottle. I did hear that the water goes down the plughole in a different direction but that myth has been busted!

  26. So that’s how it’s done. I often wondered. And I’m not going to spend the rest of the day filling and emptying baths to see which way the water circulates. I have better things to do.

  27. Hey! Not all American beer is making love in a canoe. Definitely the big brands are, but there’s plenty to be found here that is worth the drinking.

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