October 12, 2005

Hollywood Reporter #1

Perhaps no city in modern times
has been so universally envied,
imitated, ridiculed, and, because
of what it may portend, feared.”
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2000

I am having a very good time in California. That is partly because it's so nutty and bizarre sometimes you feel like you're in a movie (and very often you are. Or at least, you're just on the wrong side of the yellow-tape marking off yet another location) and partly because I know I have to go home soon and thus won't be putting up with the madness and "LA-ness" forever.

It is an anthropological experience, to say the least! Where else would I be waiting at a traffic light and casually glance to my left and see a fat, bald man in the vehicle next to me, with very long, painted fingernails and ladies' hands?

Where else would I be served by a long-haired brunette with a 5 'o clock shadow
in a clothing store?

Where else would I hear adverts for diet pills and plastic surgery on the radio? The early mornig radio DJ extolling the virtues of her plastic surgeon? I mean, PUHLEEEEZE!

Radio ads that go on for (what feels like) 3 mins or more! Forget the 30 sec spot with a jingle and catchy pay-off line. And there is always an 1-800-INSTABUY number to go with any product.

I recently saw a TV commercial for (yet another) best of Elvis compilation CDs (at around 00h40 in the morning) and a "rush delivery" 1-800 number. "Yes, please, I need my Elvis CD RIGHT NOW! I cannot wait - rush it to me, it's an emergency!"

This urgent Elvis ad was followed by another that started off with a woman trying to clean dirty dishes with tissue paper and a man with dried mud all over his body trying to remove it with tissues, instead of water, under the shower. Turns out this advert was for a new toilet. The type that cleans your derriere after use, although no-one actually said that directly. Instead there was much "are you as clean as you should be?" questioning and a demonstration of a spray of water that spritzes across the toilet bowl at the touch of a button. Thus, when seated, that water spritzes directly up your tush. Cut to a busty blonde at the end saying, "it's quite an experience" with a foxy grin. Hilarious.

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