Thursday, September 07, 2006

Abandon All Hopes of a Fourth Great Awakening

Commercial advertising is grand. If I was in advertising, and had a decent product to sell and just came up with this one really good idea, I'd be set for life. Upon the success of my campaign, I'd slap it atop my resume in bold letters and hope someone remembered to print it on my tombstone. Take those commercials for CareerBuilder. You've got monkeys, the corporate setting, and Quiet Riot. Need they say more? I posted my resume up there and I won't even need a job for two years. A good example of taking something rather mediocre and getting people interested.

However, as hundreds of thousands of marketing majors have bitterly discovered, while CareerBuilder is lackluster in reality, it's a crown jewel to ad people. Because there are some things that, no matter how hard one try and no matter how clever one be, will not sell.

Such as, you ask? Take Amsterdam Segway Tours:

That's right. Amsterdam Segway Tours.

Amsterdam makes Las Vegas look like Epcot Center. It houses not only legalized drugs, legalized prostitution (complete with window advertising), but it even has canals. What better way to take in this historic haven of hedonism than on a Segway, wearing a fashionable helmet, with a jovial, brightly-clad guide to point out all the amazing locations and share amusing anecdotes that you can be sure you won't hear anywhere else?

You get the idea.

Clearly, while aiming in this ad toward the hip post-college "What, me, work?" crowd the flows in from around Europe and abroad, the Amsterdam Segway Tour is probably best reserved for those angry middle-aged fathers who ended up in Amsterdam on a vacation stop. He knows he can't do anything considered fun in Amsterdam. Thus, it's only fair that his kids don't do anything considered fun in Amsterdam, either. Behold, the Amsterdam Segway Tour.

While the "Native Nightlife" evening tour could possibly consist of just roving along the canals taking in the native drunkards cursing the results of the evening's football (see: soccer) game, I can't help but envision rolling through the Red Light District and then towering a full four feet over all the Japanese businessmen.

And what the heck are those pouches for, anyway?

So there you have it. A bad idea spruced up and delivered in the best possible light. All things considered, I believe whoever created this ad deserves a Christmas bonus.

Speaking of Christmas, do they celebrate it in Amsterdam? I mean do they really celebrate it? The birth of Christ, that is? I can't say. But given certain transformations that have occurred in the Church over on our side of the Atlantic, I'm not so sure I can testify if Christ is getting his just due these days.

Once again, to the advertisements!

It exists. Seriously.

Let me preface my cynisism with some concessions to how NorthRidge got this right:
1.) God is still gets a larger font and a capital letter.
2.) ...

While cramming all that comfort, style, latte, and, of course, fun into an hour long service, will one's family really receive impact from God's word? Assuming God's Word (that is, the Bible) is still utilized in this environment (Q: did they quit stocking them after they removed the pews and installed those stadium-style seats with cupholders?), what about all of God's words that are uncomfortable? Take, for example, anything that refers to sin.

Take also raising any questions on how these megachurches go about their business; now that's bound to make everyone real uncomforable. As damnable as sin may be, no one likes a spoilsport. I think I'll stick with this Church: