Attention, last-minute shoppers: TV ads take active approach to inactivity

Attention, last-minute shoppers: TV ads take active approach to inactivity

Posted: Friday, December 16, 2011 8:03 pm
By: By DAVID CRITCHLOW JR., Editor

Got your Christmas shopping done?
The question arises on what seems to be an hourly basis this time of year and, since I’m not much of a shopper, my response is usually, “No, I’ve still got a few things left to pick up.”
The truth is, I have done no shopping and probably won’t until late next week.
That said, a couple of items on television caught my attention recently.
The first was “Forever Lazy,” which is just what our morbidly obese country needs … and just in time for some holiday gorging.
According to a national TV advertising campaign, Forever Lazy is “the one-piece, lie-around full-body lazy-wear.”
Apparently this year’s Snuggie, which appeared to be nothing more than a robe worn backwards when it debuted, the Forever Lazy comes in three stylish colors and “keeps your head warm, comfortable and lazy.”
And, to ensure you never have to take it off, it “has zippered hatches in front and back, for great escapes when duty calls.”
Seeing the proud owners of the Forever Lazy on TV — modeling the pajama-looking attire while lounging around the house or attending outdoor sporting events — I imagined all the places I could be lazy and show off my flair for fashion.
For more action-oriented holiday shoppers, another TV advertisement caught my attention — the Time-Life Series DVD set of the first season of “Six Million Dollar Man,” featuring actor Lee Majors.
For those who don’t remember the hit show from the 1970s, the premise for the show is an astronaut, Steve Austin (aka Lee Majors), who is barely alive after a horrific accident involving a space shuttle prototype. Both of his legs are crushed beyond repair, his right arm is ripped off and he loses one of his eyes.
Each show begins with the memorable line: “We can rebuild him, we have the technology. We can make him better than he was. Better, stronger, faster.”
In other words, the government had an extra $6 million lying around so they made him bionic. After surgery, he becomes half-man and half-machine with super strengths in his legs, one arm and eye.
Somehow, whenever he uses these bionic appendages, he suddenly moves in slow motion — which amazingly gives him the appearance of super-human abilities — and emits electronic “nuh-nuh-nuh-nuh-nuh-nuh” sound effects that have been imitated ever since by anyone who ever watched the show.
While the TV show ended more than three decades ago, I think some of my friends think it was based on a true story and believe they can have similar results with the help of modern-day surgical procedures.
Just last week, I heard a friend got a new titanium hip while another had knee replacement surgery, during which the doctor used some sort of cobalt alloys and plastic called polyethylene to “rebuild” his old worn-out knee.
Apparently, those materials are not the equivalent of the bionic implants of the ’70s.
I don’t know how long it took for TV’s Steve Austin to build up to running speeds of 60 miles per hour, but these guys better stick with driving if they are going to go a fraction of that speed.
I saw one of them testing his knee on the equipment at Health Quest’s workout facility recently and listened for the familiar bionic “nuh-nuh-nuh-nuh-nuh-nuh” sound effects. Nope, all I could hear were grunts.
With several eye surgeries and a shoulder surgery in my personal medical records, I, too, had hoped to be “better, stronger, faster.” I’m still waiting. Mostly, I’m just getting older.
Since those guys are already in their 50s and I’m quickly approaching AARP’s magic number, maybe it’s time to re-evaluate the situation. And maybe that “Forever Lazy” isn’t looking so bad after all.
And with three stylish colors to offer, no doubt we’d be the envy of everyone at the gym — if we ever got off our lazy tails to get up there.
Editor David Critchlow Jr. may be contacted by email at dgc@ucmessenger.com. Published in The Messenger 12.16.11

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