by Gregor Stronach
Your average Joe who watches his three and a half hours of television a night will be exposed to a total of about 49 minutes of ads, most of which he will have forgotten by the time he goes to bed. The only ones we remember are for products we already want, or ads that are so very, very bad that they get stuck in your head and won't let go of your cerebral cortex. They dig in, cause migraines and strokes, leaving us as vegetables incapable of even the simplest of actions, save humming the advertiser's jingle somewhat tunelessly while we colour in.
I watch advertisements for the simple expedient of boycotting any shops or services that offer annoying advertisements that dilute my televisual experience. For example, I will never buy floor coverings from any company who euphemise their product's stain proof qualities buy making a small puppy sit very still on their quality wool carpet. I guess I'll be walking on floorboards for the rest of my life.
But I've often wondered what life for the average punter would be like if I was allowed to write advertisements.
I figure 28 seconds of ultra-noisy static followed by a white text on black screen message: "You're a piece of shit if you don't buy product X." It'll work. People will go out in droves, buy the product and proudly display it on the front of their homes to prove to their neighbours once and for all that they aren't the snivelling shit they've been accused of being all these years.
Or perhaps I would appeal to the children. "You have cancer. Mummy didn't tell you because she didn't want you to worry. But the fact remains, you'll be dead by the time you turn twelve. So - you don't need to save your pocket money. Go out and buy yourself a Coke. Live for today - that's our motto!" Or is that too easy?
However, the real future of advertising is in endorsements, and I've hit upon a scheme that's gonna make me rich, just for being me, and sell a few shoes and tracksuits along the way.
I'm a slob. I despise exercise, and would rather dig half-smoked butts out of the ashtray than wander half a block down the road to buy cigarettes. I drink excessive amounts of coffee, take stimulants and sundry other consumables to maintain my figure, where half an hour of walking a night would probably suffice. I eat takeaway food when and where possible, but only the home delivery type. I always order three times too much, and eat the leftovers cold for breakfast while I'm in the shower. It saves both time and washing up.
I figure the lovely people at Nike, one of whom might read this, will pay me not to wear their product. I'm such the antithesis of what Nike wants their consumers to be that they'll pay me a seven figure sum not to wear their shoes, track pants, jumpers, earrings, sweatbands or tee shirts.
I'll be the world's first anti-endorsement man. Other companies, upon seeing the massive success in sales that Nike has achieved by putting me on telly as a shining example of what they don't want people to be, will be queuing up to have me not wear their stuff at all as well. Reebok, Fila, Levis...you name it, I won't be wearing it. And I'll be not wearing it very, very publicly.
Eventually, I'll be nude on television. And that's where the real money will come in. Some random fashion company will do the world a favour, 'Community Service Announcement' style. They'll clothe me to save the world from seeing my pimply backside during the evening news. And pay me to wear their stuff.
I'm gonna be richer than God.
Gregor Stronach is the future.