Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Welcome to Squaresville, Pops

"Hey Dad, I want you to drop me off a block from the theater."

Here's some commentary to this funny ad from Brad Aaron, a writer on New York City's Streetsblog:
"At first you think that, considering dad's expanding waistline, she's looking to get some exercise. But it turns out she's embarrassed to be seen in an SUV, since 'people in that [presumably urban] part of town are riding bikes and have hybrids and stuff.'"
Which makes sense. If her friends saw this guy driving up in an SUV, they'd draw the perfectly obvious conclusion that this is just another chubby, mid-life-critical condition who needs a big car to help him feel better about his emasculating suburban existence. Seeing a dude reduced to this is terribly embarrassing for everyone involved. I mean, check out this guy I saw in a Burger King drive-thru a few years ago:

He thinks he's the Burger King himself. I know this photo isn't easy to look at, but these people are out there, and it's tragic.

But wait! Objects Pop. This overpriced vehicle for fantasies of superiority IS a hybrid. "Like a hybrid hybrid?" asks daughter. "I don't know what a 'hybrid hybrid' is, but yes," answers Pops smugly.

They drive off. Pop's fantasy of responsible masculinity deflates slightly as he spies his receding hairline in the rear-view mirror, and a voiceover proclaims their car to be the most fuel-efficient SUV in the world. Brad Aaron speculates on the inaudible continuation of the father-daughter conversation:
"The daughter, now inaudible, explains that an anemic 34 miles-per-gallon hardly qualifies the Escape as a "hybrid hybrid" -- any more than the Chevy Tahoe is the 'Green Car of the Year' -- and asks dad why the family can't move closer to the theater so he and mom might stave off heart disease and she wouldn't have to be ferried around in 'the greenwashing machine.'"
OK, that's about enough jackass environmentalism from the auto industry, and lunch break is over. I could go on for ages, but it's like shooting fish in a barrel. Apologies for the editorial laziness.


pjfinn said...

Just think -- the guy could commute from the award-winning house you posted about a while back in the award-winning Tahoe and crow about being green while accomplishing absolutely nothing. That seems to be the MO these days. Your term 'jackass environmentalism' really nails it.

Patrick Ian Banks said...

I bet that guy (or is it That Guy?) would be first to pitch a fit if anyone tried to build windmills within 10 miles of his favorite ski lodge. Christ am I ever glad my dad makes Edward Abbey look like a Big Oil lobbyist.