I'm Not Buying It
Among the many ways my kids’ childhood experience is unlike mine is that they don’t get to watch hours of cartoons on commercial TV each Saturday morning. I myself looked forward to the onslaught of animated programs every week, starting around the minute the cartoons ended and the TV went dark, and continuing through the week, until, finally, Bugs Bunny would reappear on my television screen, feeding my addiction anew. Lest you think my kids don't get screen time, I assure you they get far too much, but it’s generally “on-demand” while dinner is being made, which severely diminishes their exposure to the marketing of toy machine guns and sugar-coated chocolate breakfast cereals.
But just because they aren’t allowed to switch on the TV on Saturday mornings doesn’t mean they don’t get ads. Red Sox games are permeated with mind-numbing efforts to sell us stuff, to which my daughter is all-too receptive. A couple months back, she heard that Ford was having a “Summer Spectacular,” which, in her mind, was clearly related to the “Christmas Spectacular” at Radio City Music Hall with the Rockettes, and we really must go! Similarly, a couple of days ago she informed me that “there is no better time to buy a Kia, Dad.” She clarified: “What that means is ‘these days’” (i.e. not that very instant). “Why do we need a new car?” my wife asked. “Because ours are dirty.” (If that’s the main criterion, then we also need a new house).
So far, she hasn’t advised me to switch to Geico or call my doctor if I have an erection lasting longer than 4 hours, but that can’t be far off.