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That word. I do not think it means what you think it means. - A little less than a happy high — LiveJournal
That word. I do not think it means what you think it means.
There’s a new Dunkin Donuts radio spot where a couple on a beach find a treasure chest and, being conscientious soulsnaïve gits, begin to ask whether anyone misplaced a chest filled with priceless gold coins. At this point, a voiceover says, "For the rest of us, there’s Dunkin Donuts."

I heard it and reacted with, "What’s that supposed to mean??" V explained that they were saying that if you weren’t lucky enough to have stumbled onto a cache of doubloons, you could always get cheap coffee at Dunks. I utterly missed that, and if this really was the intent of the spot, I’m probably too stupid to drink their coffee.

Of course, that’s the underlying message that comes out of it anyway. Perhaps I’m too cynical or just too prickly about manipulation in its various forms, but the whole ad reads like a particularly insulting take on "A fool and his money..." Yes, I spend more on my beans and the occasional cup that I buy, but that has more to do with the fact that I don’t want my coffee to taste stale if I make it at home or watered down and/or burnt if I have it out. It’s a question of quality, and when talking about the fuel that makes the first part of the day bearable, I promise, "You get what you pay for."


Perhaps related, I’m more than a little disturbed by the "small town values" catchphrase that’s gotten bandied about of late. Although people have been tight-lipped about what it means, exactly, you can be certain that no one’s talking about being honest, laid-back, and folksy. Instead, it appears to be shorthand for "Them queers make me uncomfortable," "Ain’t no daughter of mine having sex," and "Science is just the Devil testing my faith." (Various elements of these are easily mixed and matched. Try it, it's fun!) The unfortunate thing about using "small town values" to convey your agenda is that it implies provincialism, and in my mind, provincialism is not exactly an ideal guide for the hand of a major world leader.

Of course, I’ve already outed myself as a "latte-drinking East Coast elitist" who’s too stupid to buy coffee at Dunks, and cynical to boot.
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(Deleted comment)
komos From: komos Date: September 9th, 2008 08:32 pm (UTC) (Link)
I have been known to sour milk from time to time.
emzebel From: emzebel Date: September 9th, 2008 04:05 pm (UTC) (Link)
Mmm. Yes. I am finding myself very confuddled by much of the Republican's rhetoric this season. What values shall I have? The small town Normal ones? Or the elitist east coast snobbery ones hightened by living and working inside the Beltway?

My brain, it hurts!
komos From: komos Date: September 9th, 2008 11:18 pm (UTC) (Link)
I consider myself a small town survivor.
cook_ting From: cook_ting Date: September 9th, 2008 04:14 pm (UTC) (Link)
My daughter is having non-faith-based, scientifically informed, queer, premarital, Devil sex? When did that happen?
komos From: komos Date: September 9th, 2008 11:18 pm (UTC) (Link)
It always happens when you least expect it, and usually when one of them there city slickers comes through, with Trouble in tow.
faux_eonix From: faux_eonix Date: September 9th, 2008 04:22 pm (UTC) (Link)
My issue with the small town shit is that it everyone who gives an explanation of what it means, implies that everyone who doesn't live in a small time (ie, the MAJORITY OF AMERICA) have no values, don't attend church (and by "church" they mean "Christian, perhaps Jewish but not Catholic"), and have no common sense.

komos From: komos Date: September 9th, 2008 11:20 pm (UTC) (Link)
My issue is that it means exactly nothing. It just puts a pretty face on the fact that no one who's touting these values actually has any real stake in them.
inahandbasket From: inahandbasket Date: September 9th, 2008 04:22 pm (UTC) (Link)
*mixes and matches quotes*

Them queers make daughter of mine having sex!
komos From: komos Date: September 9th, 2008 11:22 pm (UTC) (Link)
Them science is no daughter of mine.
oxlahun From: oxlahun Date: September 9th, 2008 05:09 pm (UTC) (Link)
Queer sex is just daughters testing science.

A theme in a couple of other Dunkies commercials I've heard lately is that their eggwhite-based flatbread sandwiches are smart, as opposed to (or at least when compared to) the stupid decisions these other folks made. "Next time I go running with the bulls, I won't wear flip-flops."
komos From: komos Date: September 9th, 2008 11:25 pm (UTC) (Link)
I find advertising that uses the "If you're not buying this, you're an idiot" trope pretty tiresome. VW managed to do it right with the Unpimp Your Auto ads, but for the most part it just fails.
gatz From: gatz Date: September 10th, 2008 01:02 am (UTC) (Link)

That's almost it

I had to blitz through the comments to make sure I didn't type something someone else already had, but yeah--the new DD ads are essentially saying that going to DD and getting their new <300 calorie options is extremely smart. People who would keep a chest of buried treasure and not report this rare and historical find to the authorities (the rest of us), go to DD and buy 'smart' food and drink options because we're smart. But I see how the ad can go one of many ways.

Personally, I could care less how the ads run. I like their crack-based coffee. Well, that's mostly true. I like their milk and sugar with some of their crack-based coffee thrown in the cup for color. :)
komos From: komos Date: September 10th, 2008 03:02 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: That's almost it

I like warm, sweetened coffee-flavored cream as much as the next guy, but I'm loathe to put it on the same level as the Ethiopian that comes of my French press for barely more effort. 'Course, my biggest problem is that without 5 scoops of sugar and enough cream to choke a goat, their coffee just isn't good to me.
schizohedron From: schizohedron Date: September 10th, 2008 02:11 pm (UTC) (Link)

Line of the day

>Queer sex is just daughters testing science.

Bumpersticker or T-shirt for this outstanding sentence? I say both! To CafePress, minions!
oxlahun From: oxlahun Date: September 10th, 2008 02:16 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: Line of the day

Maybe later. I'm still hawking Geezer-Dingbat stuff at CaféPress.
watchamacallit From: watchamacallit Date: September 9th, 2008 05:18 pm (UTC) (Link)
komos From: komos Date: September 9th, 2008 11:25 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yeah, I saw it, and the whole episode was pretty classic.
(Deleted comment)
komos From: komos Date: September 9th, 2008 11:26 pm (UTC) (Link)
I really love that I know a few folks who will always go that extra step. ^^
plumtreeblossom From: plumtreeblossom Date: September 9th, 2008 06:37 pm (UTC) (Link)
Rather than fighting the sweeping generalizations inherent in their catchphrases, we need to be making some more of our own.

--an urban gentrifying, latte-soaked elitist douchebaguette
komos From: komos Date: September 9th, 2008 11:28 pm (UTC) (Link)
I could just call myself a nostalgia-bashing free-thinking humanist, but I'm comfortable enough in my politics to weather attempts to stereotype me.
tenillypo From: tenillypo Date: September 9th, 2008 07:13 pm (UTC) (Link)
My favorite part was the lady on the Daily Show who tried to explain that small town values meant "real people." So...I guess the rest of the country is populated by robots? Good to know that I no longer count as a human being. Although I guess I kind of already knew that, being one of the heathen GAY and all.

(Also, I appreciated the dude who said small town values meant "fishing." Just--yeah. *facepalm*)
komos From: komos Date: September 9th, 2008 11:29 pm (UTC) (Link)
Wait, you're NOT a robot? You've somehow dodged the mandated Stepford Initiative?
why_style From: why_style Date: September 10th, 2008 01:19 pm (UTC) (Link)
what i always come back to with this stuff, that is when it comes to advertising and politics, is the sick knot i get in my stomach when i consider that the very people who are so easily manipulated by advertising (and i can include myself because i know i'm susceptible too) get to vote.
komos From: komos Date: September 11th, 2008 11:34 am (UTC) (Link)
Yeah, they get to vote, but ultimately, they don't get to select who becomes president. There's an arcane college of wizardssagesponieselectors who do that for them.
schizohedron From: schizohedron Date: September 10th, 2008 07:19 pm (UTC) (Link)

When I think of small towns . . .

I call to mind such venerable hamlets as Innsmouth, Arkham, and Dunwich. Their values are the very heart of America's heritage. The irresistible call of the sea. Pawings from within rustic barns as the farm young'uns grow so fast. Whippoorwills chattering in the birches under a harvest moon. And always, in the old tomes of our Elders, the good solid Word they taught us to respect.

Yes, Senator Obama may be a rockstar, but America's small towns know which stars are truly Right!
komos From: komos Date: September 11th, 2008 11:42 am (UTC) (Link)
Let's not forget the monstrous odour that shows no signs of dissipating. Some may well go mad by the time this is through.
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