Monday, December 27, 2010

Ad Watch--Taxes and Bob Barker

I am VERY hard to impress when it comes to creative commercials. I've written and produced so many, heard so many, et al, that it takes a really good one to catch my eye/ear and gain my applause.

I've actually seen two in the past hour watching a meaningless bowl game.

1) H&R Block---great answer to the question, "How do you refresh an age old message of 'let us do your taxes'." Send some Block reps to a public location, invite people to bring their past returns, and they'll see what they might be able to find in $$$ that you shoulda gotten back but didn't. The best part? At the end, having the group together with "real people" coming onstage revealing to all in attendance (at a food court, perhaps?) how much "new" money they have thanks to H&R Block.

Old story, told in an effective new way simply by changing the scenery. It's not the stuffy agent talking to someone you don't care about at a cubicle at one of those temporary H&R Block locations. It's now shown as an event. Great work.

2) State Farm---if singing their jingle really changed your life instantly, I'd leave my current insurance, sign with them, sing the jingle and scream "FULL TIME EMPLOYMENT!" But I digress. The newest spot has a guy opining for the one and only Bob Barker, who, in turn, introduces a new car.

Bob Barker never gets old. BUT, State Farm should note that since I've now seen this spot 3 times in 45 minutes, they should worry quickly about rotation burnout (see "Geico" spots!!).

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

My 30 Favorite Beatle Songs--30 Years After John's Passing

I went to sleep that Monday night 30 years ago before Howard Cosell announced the death of John Lennon near the end of Monday Night Football.

I learned the next morning around 6am, when I started hearing Beatle songs on every radio station and wondering why. Then I heard the news.

I was never a Beatle disciple, and certainly didn't care for some of their life choices, but I loved their music. So, the sadness for me that morning was realizing that the hope that the Fab Four would, at some point, reunite for something special, was now dead, too. The Beatles, in the flesh, were history.

So, 30 years removed from that night, how about looking at my 30 favorite Beatle tunes. I like focusing on the music anyway. :)

30) Being For The Benefit Of Mr. Kite
29) Rocky Raccoon
28) Maxwell's Silver Hammer
27) Love Me Do
26) The Continuing Story of Bungalow Bill
25) When I'm Sixty-Four
24) I Am The Walrus
23) The Night Before
22) Something
21) Please Please Me
20) Paperback Writer
19) Lady Madonna
18) Ticket To Ride
17) Back in The USSR
16) Twist and Shout
15) Eleanor Rigby
14) It Won't Be Long
13) Eight Days A Week
12) Anytime At All
11) I Feel Fine
10) Tell Me Why
9) A Hard Days' Night
8) Got To Get You Into My Life
7) Revolution #9
6) It's Only Love
5) Lovely Rita
4) Drive My Car
3) She Loves You
2) I Wanna Hold Your Hand
1) Hey Jude

Friday, December 03, 2010


So, I sit here in darkness. The girls are at Starbucks visiting a friend before she moves away (what is it about wifey and her BFF's? They all move away eventually.) The boys are dueling, and let's just say "Friday Night at the Yu-Gi-Oh" isn't my cup of tea.

This is my first Friday night at home since September 3rd. I hate it.

This is the worst Friday night of the year. Every year. What Friday, you ask?

The first Friday that I DON'T have a high school football game to cover.

I was TRULY blessed in 2010, in that we had good weather every Friday, so no "Monday makeup" games, plus the radio station where I call the Patrick Henry games was able to put together a package for another county team when they proceeded into the playoffs. That extended my "season" for two weeks, delaying this inevitable night...

....until now.

It's 9:30 and I'm ready for bed. No high school highlights to wait for. The state semifinals are tomorrow afternoon. Robbie's alma mater has to play in Virginia Beach and if I had money, he and I would hit the road to root for the Herm.

But, as I approach the end of my 15th month of unemployment (save these few football games), who's got money?

Alas, all the more reason to go to bed.