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Full House Reviewed
So lest anyone fears this is turning into a Breaking Bad fan blog…I’ll write about another show.

LOL JK. But I’ll write about someone else who is writing about another show: the guy over at Full House Reviewed.

Go check it out. Because it’s incredibly funny.

I used to love Full House when I was a kid. Looking back I have no idea why…even then there was far better stuff on television. But, whatever, I liked it. I thought Jesse was cool, I thought Joey was funny, and I even thought Kimmie Gibbler was attractive. (Was I really the only one??) I guess I was all kindsa fucked up as a kid.

But rewatching this show now? Jesus.

Some shows and films and songs age a bit poorly, and you might feel a bit silly for having enjoyed them unironically at some point, but man oh man was Full House just total and utter garbage. A lot of these ongoing review blogs end up reaching for jokes to make and downplaying something’s effectiveness, because they kind of have to. The stopped clock ends up being right at a certain time of day but the blog must go on.

Not so here; Full House never gets anything right. It’s an absolute perfect target, and I end up feeling ludicrously proud when he points out some of the same issues I’ve had when I happen to catch a re-run as an adult. (And seriously…why is that show re-run at all?)

Anyway, yeah. Go enjoy that, while things are relatively quiet here.

I’m working pretty hard on Detective Fiction right now, and I couldn’t be happier to report that. For those of you who don’t stalk me, that’s my novel, and it’s around three or four years in the writing now. I’ve got a good draft complete…and now I’m at the point in the process that sees me getting it into some kind of shape that I wouldn’t be ashamed to send to an agent or a publisher.

Needless to say, it’ll take another four years.

But I’m excited. I’m very happy with how it came out…so while it still needs a lot of work, I can’t wait to get it out there and see how folks react to it. That’s going to be the really fun part.

I’ll talk more about it some other time, for sure, but I have a little story about Full House.

I stopped watching it in fifth grade or so…whatever year that would have been for me. And in sixth grade, my friend Lucas Monaco (which is a name I wish I invented) mentioned some new episode over the weekend or something. I said, “You still watch Full House?”

I was a huge bully back then, as I am today. I always beat people up and make fun of them for the things they enjoy, and then I give them a purple nurple. So he was terrified!

…no. It wasn’t meant to be confrontational at all. I was just surprised. But he sort of hesitated and said, “Yeah. But it’s not as good now that Jesse owns the Smash Club.”

I don’t know what happened to Lucas Monaco.

He’s probably a successful television critic.

Uncle Ruckus

I just wanted to draw your attention to what has to be the most intriguing Kickstarter campaign I’ve seen yet. (It’s certainly the only one I’ve even considered donating to.) Aaron McGruder wants you to support a live-action Uncle Ruckus movie. And you know what? You really should.

I haven’t written anything about The Boondocks here yet, but I will. I was a bit wary of the show before it premiered (and the comic strip never did anything for me) but from the moment I gave it a chance I realized that it was so much more than I expected it to be. It’s not the cheap humor of culture clash that I expected it to be…it’s a consistently strong and shockingly smart dissertation on race relations in America.

Similar ground has been covered more times than I could ever hope to count in the past, but McGruder’s is an articulate rage, and it’s one that very knowingly has three fingers pointing back at him. That’s more than part of its charm…that’s its identity. McGruder doesn’t focus entirely upon how blacks are perceived in a predominantly white region…he also looks inward at blacks themselves and asks, “What the fuck are we doing?” As often as he’s appalled by white privilege, he’s at least as enraged by black attitude, and The Boondocks emerges as a brilliantly confused, ethically complicated question of co-existence…both with each other, and with the conflicting aspects of ourselves.

The young Freeman brothers — radical idealist Huey and burgeoning thug Riley — reflect this duality quite well, and serve as our focal points for most episodes, but the most rewardingly complex creation of McGruder’s is Uncle Ruckus, a self-hating black man who has bought into the idea that whites are the superior race. The absolute worst of American hatred is filtered through this rotund, milky-eyed black man who curses his own race and wishes nothing more than to see the country purified into a sheet of uniform whiteness.

It’s terrible, and yet it’s tragic. Ruckus isn’t an inherently bad person — any more or less than any other character — but he serves as a brilliant prism that refracts the various approaches to race relations that have been taken elsewhere in pop culture. And now, with help, McGruder may create a live action film about him.

And I think you should help. Because if the show is anything to go by, this movie could be a massively affecting and disorienting comic masterpiece.

I won’t beg, and I won’t say any more — as I’m realizing now how poor I am at expressing my love of the show — but I hope you at least consider it.

If you haven’t seen the show, here’s a list of episodes to get you started: “Granddad’s Fight,” “A Huey Freeman Christmas,” “Return of the King,” “The Passion of Reverend Ruckus,” “Thank You For Not Snitching,” “Home Alone,” “It’s a Black President, Huey Freeman,” “The Fundraiser,” and “The Color Ruckus.” Or just all of them. They’re pretty fucking great.

Oh and Lego is gauging interest in a series of Mega Man-inspired sets. SO GO DO THAT TOO.

I’m honored to have the chance to speak here with Andrew Apanov, the brains behind the Dotted Music digital marketing agency. Andrew’s latest — and largest — project is a series of short, documentary-like videos called Stand Above the Noise. It’s this fascinating endeavor that we discuss mostly below, but we also find time to ponder alternate histories, desert island meal allowances, and, of course, the accordion.

1) What, in your opinion, separates Dotted Music from any other digital marketing agency?

I think there are two things to it. The first is how the agency came out and the second is how it is organised.

We didn’t start as a music business entity, or a business at all. And we didn’t create a blog to attract new clients as it usually happens. Instead, the blog has been the core of the brand. I launched Dotted Music with an aim to educate musicians around the world, not having a single idea what it would turn into three years later.

Then I just felt the need to participate in developing music careers on a deeper level, and so the agency and my consulting offers emerged, but education is still our highest priority.

The other thing is our “location independence.” We are all other the world: the company is registered in the States, I’m in Kaliningrad, Russia, just as our designers, my business partner is in Canada, our blog’s editor is between Scotland and Cyprus, marketing managers are in New York City, and so on. Yet, thanks to technology (and I know this sounds banal in 2012), it is possible to do a lot without a centralised physical office.

2) The big project for you right now seems to be your documentary, Stand Above the Noise. Roughly how much time have you invested in the film so far?

This is our biggest educational project by date, just as the most time-consuming one for sure! Well, we started filming it in Kaliningrad in June 2011, and have been conducting interviews in various cities across Europe since then (and continue to do so around each two months). Just to make it clear, it’s not a full-fledged documentary film, but a series of interviews run on our YouTube channel. And although this project is self-funded and we have been on a fairly tight budget, we’ve filmed a couple hundred gigabytes of Full HD footage by now and are not going to stop.

3) You certainly have a knack for great names, between Dotted Music and Stand Above the Noise. What is the story behind each of these names?

Damn, this question made my day. I have been waiting for a compliment on either of those for so long! Yet seriously, it will be difficult to remember how exactly the Dotted Music name came along. I was just looking for something original, and guess the inspiration came from dotted notes in sheet music (reminded me that years ago I actually knew that stuff). Then, I love minimal style pretty much in everything, and a dot& worked perfectly for a simplistic design of the logo and the website. And of course, going further, the music industry is in such a beautifully unstable form right now that naming a blog dedicated to this business “solid music” or something in the vein would be misleading.

Stand Above the Noise is a bit of an “in your face” type of title, but I wanted it to be the statement. Initially, due to my love for rather obscure names, the working title of the documentary was Ear-Pleasing Noise. My designer, who is behind the neat graphics used in the series by the way, told me that it didn’t seem to work that well, and so I started the brainstorming process again. I knew I wanted to keep the “noise” in the title, another friend of mind suggested that “above” or “beyond” could fit the title well and so here we are, with Stand Above The Noise.

4) What do you think was the most eye-opening interview you conducted for Stand Above the Noise?

I can think of few. Last year, when I was working with an artist from France and had to dig into the French music business, I was impressed how fundamentally everything seemed to be organised to support musicians. When I talked to an indie guitarist Chris Martins in Paris though, it turned out that everything was not that shiny for a lot of music acts in the country. A conversation with Corinna Poeszus from Universal Publishing Production in Berlin was also extremely insightful. There I realised the growing potential of music licensing, or B2B approach of selling music as I would call it. And it’s booming right now. Of course there was a lot of other great interviews and I feel that the most insightful ones are yet to happen.

5) Name the one person, living or dead, that you wish you could have interviewed for Stand Above the Noise.

There is a myriad of awesome people in the industry who I would love to (and will! ha) chat with, but besides, it would be interesting to interview those mainstream stars who do fantastic job with engaging audiences of astronomic scales, like Rihanna or Lady Gaga.

6) Describe the evolution of the film. From what I understand, it started off as a much smaller project.

It started as a slightly different project. We wanted to create a documentary film, but the more we worked on it the more I realised it should be more than a film that not too many artists will watch anyway. People don’t have time to watch long videos on YouTube nowadays. Plus, I wanted it to be a long-time project, so a transformation into the interview series was a decision I never regretted about. By the way, we are also airing each new episode live, with my commentary and special invited guests — will see how well it’ll go!

7) You mentioned your wife Katya as being invaluable to the film. With her experience in broadcast journalism, that’s understandable. What do you feel she brought to the project?

She brought the project to life. Although it’s always me setting up and conducting interviews, she’s been directing, filming, and editing everything. Katya has also been helping me with doing the interviews professionally. Another thing is being filmed on camera. I suck at it. And I feel really sorry for my wife who needs to take dozen takes of a one-minute video of me. But I’m improving, promise!

8) Describe what a version of Stand Above the Noise would look like without her involvement.

I must say, this project would never see the light without her involvement.

9) You used to play the accordion. Where would your life be now if you had stuck with that as your primary mode of expression?

Oh my, I have no idea what career I could have as an accordionist, or what a regular accordionist career is at all. The last two times I saw an accordion player on MTV were that Gusttavo Lima live recording and a music video of a Finnish folk hip hop band — and I’m so grateful I am not involved in those anyhow! With all respect to the instrument, of course. I had sincerely enjoyed playing Bach (this is where my love for deep bass was born I guess).

10) What is the seminal accordion recording that should represent the instrument to all of mankind?

Some compositions written for organ sound excellent on accordion, but I won’t name anything specific.

11) You have experience managing acts, which is a far trickier business than many people might realize. What is one band or musician that you feel has been severely mismanaged? How would you have managed them differently?

I’m glad to have this experience, and am even more glad to be able to focus on marketing aspects of artists’ careers instead of managing them. Being an old-fashioned, full-fledged manager is a tough job.

This year we worked with a fantastic UK guitarist and singer-songwriter Dave Sharman, helping him with web presence and designing his new website. He’s been around for over 20 years, but I had never heard about him until early 2012. This is a good example of a very talented musician being mismanaged back in the days, though hopefully everything will be developing way better with the release of his new album.

12) What is your favorite Bob Dylan song?

I would rather name tracks where Bob Dylan’s songs were sampled, since unfortunately I don’t have any favorites among his own.

13) What documentaries — music or otherwise — have influenced your work on Stand Above the Noise?

Surprisingly, the idea of doing our own documentary hit us while watching Metal: A Headbanger’s Journey sometime in 2011. Speaking of more relevant films, PressPausePlay is such a perfectly made one.

14) You have the chance to go back in your life and change one thing. Absolutely anything, but only one thing. What would it be?

I would start my own venture much, much earlier.

15) Apart from yourself and your wife, who do you think had the largest impact on Stand Above the Noise as a finished product?

We are surrounded by a great team of supporters, but I want to highlight what our graphic designer has done, as well as Sam Agini, our blog’s editor who’s been helping with the copy. Artists who have contributed their music (Fanu, PLAYMA just to name a few) to the project deserve a separate mention. We are very grateful to everyone who’s been involved.

16) Do you feel that the increased interest in digital music has changed the focus of fans? Are they more likely to cherrypick individual songs than listen to complete albums, or experience a musician’s entire career as a more long-form journey?

This may sound paradoxical, but although music matters more than ever (you won’t stand above the noise with shitty music, fans will simply not eat it), music becomes just one of many assets defining your success. Albums, singles, streams, free downloads — you mix it all with other content and offerings and you build a strategy, a story behind yourself and your music, and a long-form journey just as you put it. People need way more than just the music these days, they want to be a part of a tribe. They want to hear from a leader of the tribe all the time, and they want to be entertained. Too bad many musicians don’t realise that success comes with a lot more than writing and performing.

17) In one sentence, identify what you feel is the biggest issue in the music industry today. Then, in one more sentence, propose a solution.

The global music industry is too selfish. It needs to better listen to an artist and to the one who rules the market now: a music fan.

18) You traveled to many places to obtain your footage and interviews for Stand Above the Noise. Was there any one moment you had that stands out as bizarre? Describe the strangest experience you had while preparing the film.

The strangest and the most confusing experience we’ve been having so far is microphones not working properly. We’ve tried five by now. In Paris, for example, 80% of interviews were massively corrupted due to the gear issues. You can guess how we felt listening to the recordings back at home.

19) You’re on an island. You have no chance of escape. Would you rather have enough food to fill your belly every day but no music, or just enough food to keep you from starving in addition to a source of music?

My answer will be rational: it depends on what music I would have to listen and for how long I would be doomed to stay on the freaking island. If the music is bad I would agree to starve with less food just to not listen to it, and if the “vacation” wouldn’t be too long — it is useful to let ears rest a bit and enjoy the sounds of the nature. Or maybe I would stick to more food anyway, rather inventing my own music instruments and organising raving events for the most biased audience ever (me).

20) What’s next for Dotted Music?

We’ve got a lot in the works for this and next year! Watch out for the Stand Above The Noise series, new affordable marketing products for musicians, new services, and of course lots of new free content. We will release a social media iPhone app soon…yes, you hear it first!

BONUS: Say anything to my readers that you haven’t gotten the chance to say above!

If you are an artist, stick to your art no matter what you read on the interwebs. There is only one way to become successful at what you do — and it’s never to stop or give up.

Thanks again to Andrew for taking the time. It’s been an honor and I look forward to the series!

It’s election day here in America, so make sure you get out and vote. It’s important. I learned that the hard way, since the first election I was old enough to vote in was Bush vs. Gore and I did not cast a ballot, assuming democracy would sort itself out. We all saw how well that went, so I won’t be missing any — admittedly small — opportunity to shape this country’s future again.

Anyway, some of you may have seen this before as it’s certainly nothing new, but it’s been circulating again in light of election season and, at last, I’ve felt compelled to respond to this thing.

It’s ostensibly a letter to the editor by one Ken Huber, but I’m not entirely convinced it was ever published anywhere. Regardless, I think it pretty accurately reflects a certain type of mindset, even if the particular words don’t belong to the person to whom it’s attributed. And it’s a dangerous mindset. A rotten one. I thought I would take a moment to reply.

The text is viewable in the image above…if there are any errors in the transcription below they are not deliberate…feel free to let me know and I will correct them.

Editor, Has America become the land of special interest and home of the double standard?

Remember these words, as Huber frames “special interest” and “double standard” as bad things — rightly so — when he opens the letter, but then spends the rest of his time arguing in their favor.

Lets see: if we lie to the Congress, it’s a felony and if the Congress lies to us its just politics;

It should indeed be a crime to lie “to the Congress.” I genuinely can’t imagine a situation in which lying to the government should be excusable, so I don’t know why it’s a bad thing that those found guilty of bearing false testimony in a court of law should be punished for it.

Also, I’m not sure I’ve ever heard anybody say “It’s just politics” when a congressman is caught in a lie. Depending upon the severity of the lie sometimes one’s own party members will attempt to spin it in a less damaging way, but did anybody anywhere brush off the mistruths of Rod Blagojevich, Anthony Weiner or Todd Akin by saying “That’s just politics?”

We have a free press, and we take our congressmen to task for what they say and do, on both sides of the divide. Neither party gets a free ride…at the very least, they get called on it by the other party…one of the relatively few — but pretty clear — benefits of partisanship.

if we dislike a black person, we’re racist and if a black person dislikes whites, its their 1st Amendment right;

We’re still toward the front end of Huber’s second sentence and already he’s arguing overtly for a right to hate. That sure didn’t take long.

Read again what he wrote here, and then consider this alternative: “Why is it that I am always kind and friendly to my black neighbors, but I don’t feel the same courtesy in return?”

Same core wish — for a two-way sense of fairness — but the way in which it’s expressed says worlds about what we wish to do with that fairness. Huber doesn’t want to love his brother or be loved by his brother. He sees that his brother dislikes him and so he’d like the right to dislike him back.

Which is odd, because he does already have that right. Yes, if we dislike a black person because they are black, that is racist…however we have the right to dislike them for whatever intolerant reason we choose. We can’t openly discriminate against them, we can’t commit crimes against them, and we can’t enslave them, but last I checked there were plenty of racist morons roaming the street, longing for the glory days of the universal oppression of everyone who wasn’t them. Here, Huber would like us to think that he is oppressed, because we’ve robbed him of his right to oppress others. And that’s damned disgusting.

Also, it’s pretty funny that he thinks black people get an easier ride with the law than whites. That’s an ignorance so active it must hurt.

the government spends millions to rehabilitate criminals and they do almost nothing for the victims;

I still don’t know what he’s arguing for here. “Do something for the victims” is pretty clearly what he’s trying to say, but what is “something?” And “victims” of what? Both of those things need to be defined because there’s way too much room for interpretation there.

And isn’t the rehabilitation of criminals “something?” If it gets them off the streets and prevents them from committing crimes, then that’s “something” the government is doing for all potential “victims.”

Perhaps he wants free health care for victims of crimes. Well, good news for him: President Obama’s been pushing for that free health care for a while now, while the folks Huber keeps voting into office prevent him from getting it passed. Nice job, Ken.

in public schools you can teach that homosexuality is OK, but you better not use the word God in the process;

I’m unaware of any school, public or otherwise, that explicitly teaches that homosexuality is okay. More accurately they’re just not allowed to teach that it’s a Bad Thing. And why anyone would want to use the word “God” in the process of teaching the complete awesomeness of gayness is beyond me.

you can kill an unborn child, but it is wrong to execute a mass murderer;

37 states practice capital punishment currently, and the most recent Gallup poll on the subject (2011) found that 61% of Americans were in favor of executing those found guilty of murder, with only 35% opposing it. That’s a clear majority, and it’s also the lowest level of support ever found by the Gallup poll…it’s usually even higher. So I’m not sure where Huber gets the idea that America feels it’s wrong to execute a mass murderer, and he’s pretty clearly using that only as a counterpoint for his stance on abortion which, as we all know, is mandatory in all cases of pregnancy now.

we don’t burn books in America, we now rewrite them;

Citation — and significant clarification — needed.

we got rid of communist and socialist threats by renaming them progressive;

First of all, please stop lumping Communism and Socialism together. Second of all…what?

we are unable to close our border with Mexico, but have no problem protecting the 38th parallel in Korea;

We have significant problems with Korea, Ken. Far morseo than we have with Mexico. Of course, they’re also completely different problems and one might say it’s impossible to compare the two without looking foolish for doing so.

if you protest against President Obama’s policies you’re a terrorist, but if you burned an American flag or George Bush in effigy it was your 1st Amendment right.

A revisiting of Huber’s earlier black/white rant, this time naming particular individuals.

First of all, give me an example of one person who’s protested against President Obama and, due to that fact, has been tried as a terrorist. Just one, since this seems to happen all the time. That shouldn’t be so hard.

Heck, just look at Bill O’Reilly, Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck…those guys protest Obama on a daily basis, so I have to assume they’ve each been labelled terrorists and punished to the fullest extent of…

…oh, wait. No, they’re still around, and still given a platform with which to spout their anti-Obama beliefs. So where did we get this idea again?

And, yes, it is within your rights to burn someone in effigy. That’s why it’s allowed…because you’re burning someone in effigy. It’s the difference between a political statement and an attempt at assassination. Nobody’s going to jail for it, whether it’s Obama, Bush, or Harry Potter you’re burning.

You can have pornography on TV or the internet, but you better not put a nativity scene in a public park during Christmas;

What correlation is there at all between these two things? Television and the internet are both private venues for information retrieval. If someone chooses to view pornography, that’s within their rights. Why wouldn’t it be? People can choose what to view in both cases. If they want to see the pornography they can and if they don’t wish to see it they can avoid it.

A public park however is…well, public. Which is to say it is not something people should have to avoid, nor should any one person or group of people decide which religion is endorsed by it. (Also pornography, last I checked, is not a religion, so maybe, just maybe, this isn’t the comparison he should be trying to make.)

Somehow I don’t think Huber would be in favor of a giant, mechanical Mohammed being installed in a public park, so why would he be in support of a nativity? Easy…because that reflects his special interest. And his double standard means he’s perfectly fine relegating the beliefs and feelings of others to the sidelines in favor of his.

we have eliminated all criminals in America, they are now called sick people;

I thought we were rehabilitating criminals?

Who knows. Maybe in the time between writing that observation and this one America happened to eliminate all criminals and he just didn’t have time to delete that before mailing it to the editor.

We do indeed refer to criminals as “sick” very often. And they very often are sick. I’m unaware of anyone who’s stopped referring to them as criminals, however.

we can use a human fetus for medical research, but it is wrong to use an animal.

We can use an animal fetus for medical research as well. And we use animals at all stages of development for medical research. We can’t use living human beings of any age for medical research unless they personally consent, and even then there are far more stringent guidelines for testing on humans than there are for testing on animals.

We take money from those who work hard for it and give it to those who don’t want to work;

There are those who don’t want to work, and some of them do indeed defraud government welfare programs. There are also many more who can’t work, or can’t find work, whose families are sustained by temporary government assistance.

The fact that there are those who abuse a system does not suggest that the system itself is a problem.

we all support the Constitution, but only when it supports our political ideology;

I agree with this, Ken. In fact, I’d raise your letter high as proof of that very fact.

we still have freedom of speech, but only if we are being politically correct;

Your letter is not “politically correct” in the slightest, as I’m sure you’ll agree. Yet it’s also not been censored. You’ve proven yourself conclusively wrong by simply making that observation.

parenting has been replaced with Ritalin and video games; the land of opportunity is now the land of hand outs;

Nothing much to say here. The hand-outs bit is dealt with above, and I don’t know why he wants the government to enforce standards of parenting. Wouldn’t that be more in line with the imaginary Big Brother government controllapalooza he’s raging against above?

the similarity between Hurricane Katrina and the gulf oil spill is that neither president did anything to help.

A bit reductionist here, but honestly that’s pretty fair. I will say, however, that there’s a difference between not helping actual human beings who are being displaced and dying, and not helping a body of water that’s seeing substantial environmental impact. Certainly a humanitarian like Huber — who just moments ago was preaching how much more important human life is than animal life — would see that.

Also, hindsight really works against this one, as Obama’s currently dealing with the devastating effects of Hurricane Sandy…and he’s dealing with them in an active way that Bush did not do with Katrina. Comparing apples to apples, we have a clear winner here.

And how do we handle a major crisis today? The government appoints a committee to determine who’s at fault, then threatens them, passes a law, raises our taxes; tells us the problem is solved so they can get back to their reelection campaign.

Apparently determining who is at fault before dishing out punishment is a Bad Thing to Huber. So is passing a law to prevent it from happening again, and asking citizens to chip in so that this new law protecting them from a “major crisis” occurring again can actually be enforced.

What has happened to the land of the free and home of the brave?

You demonstrated that neither of those things has gone anywhere simply by complaining that they’re long gone. You’re brave and free enough to write what you feel, and newspapers are brave and free enough to print it, and everyone else is brave and free enough to respond to it as they see fit. Congratulations, Ken…your imaginary nightmare land never existed.

– Ken Huber, Tawas City

So why get out and vote?

Because this man is unquestionably turning up to the polls.

Do your part, America.

The image above is a screengrab of an ad I came across while doing some linkbuilding. It hopes to get me to click it by enticing me with the following question:

What do Bing Crosby, Jimi Hendrix and Yanni have in common?

Well, they’re all musicians. So…done?

I’m sure there’s some more interesting and obscure connection between them — or I assume there has to be, by mere virtue of the fact that the question was posed at all — but doesn’t this enticement fall at the first hurdle when all three things are immediately connected anyway?

After all, it’s not like these three individuals had minor, relatively-unknown careers in music before they became famous for something else…music is the first thing anybody thinks of when they hear those names.

Maybe the advertiser just doesn’t understand how these things are meant to work. You can’t ask something like “What do bananas, coconuts and oranges have in common?” and expect people to give you the chance to say “They all have inedible rinds” or something. They’re going to say, “They’re all fruits.”

That’s that. The question is answered. There’s no incentive to await further information because the question, as you posed it, was hardly a question at all. It was just a list of three things that slot quite obviously into the same, universally-acknowledged list.

I don’t know. It’s interesting to me when advertisers miss the mark, and I always feel compelled to dissect it when it happens. After all, it’s the job of an advertiser to be smarter than the consumer, to anticipate attention and behavior. Here, it just makes them sound dumb, and that disappoints me enormously. If advertisers can afford to come across as sounding dumb, what does that say about the people they need to be smarter than?

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to get back to pondering what pigeons, robins and bluejays have in common. I’ve nearly cracked it.

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