Archive for the ‘Language in advertising’ Category

Comes a pause in the day’s occupations

November 18, 2021

… that is known as Miller Time … when you deserve a beer break today.

None of this makes sense unless you know the advertising slogans: It’s Miller Time (for Miller High Life beer, not for novelist Henry Miller, playwright Arthur Miller, or bandleader Glenn Miller), You Deserve a Break Today (for McDonald’s, hawking hamburgers, not beer). But Calvin knows:


(#1) The Calvin and Hobbes strip distributed today, originally published 10/9/86, alluding to “Miller Time” slogans in Miller High Life beer commercials from the period

Calvin is supposed to be 6 years old — admittedly, with the sensibilities of a boy of roughly 10, but, still, not expected to be familiar with the ways of beer-drinking, so his father is alarmed that Calvin seems to be looking forward to a brew after the occupations of his day. (Whatever happened to the Children’s Hour? Television happened.)

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Powerfully eruptive, yet respectful of his anatomy

September 20, 2021

(Men’s underwear and its symbolic values, frank talk about male sexuality, but otherwise not over lines; use your judgment.)

Powerfully eruptive, yet respectful of his anatomy: the vaunted twin virtues of Krakatoa underwear for men, especially the company’s Vesuvius collection (which is, presumably, doubly volcanic in symbolic power), all with aggressively full front pouches, designed (as the ad copy has it) to respect a man’s anatomy while preparing him for life’s activities. The goods:


(#1) Krakatoa’s Vesuvius Collection: trunks, boxer briefs, and briefs in intense blue and intense red (power colors) and in black and (for the trunks) saturated gray (strongly masculine “just plain guy” colors), with those volcanic pouches all around

These two volcanos and this underwear will take us many places. But first, two shots of Krakatoa underwear (from lines other than Vesuvius) being modeled by actual men (accompanied by the ad copy “Put a volcano in your pants”).

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Cuticura, it’ll cure ya

August 23, 2021

(As far as I know, not actually used as an advertising slogan for any of the line of Cuticura skin care products — probably too jaunty and wise-cracking for the company, which seems to have been marketing primarily to women since 1865.)

From my 8/17 posting “The grocery order”: “When I was a boy, I applied Vaseline (from the family medicine cabinet) to minor burns and scrapes”. There was Vaseline — petroleum jelly — and then there was a curious patent medicine for somewhat more serious skin problems, a thick green ointment with an intriguing medicinal scent, then sold in glass jars: Cuticura ( /kjùtɪkjúrǝ/ ).

Now, having recovered this childhood memory, I got curious about Cuticura’s history — and its ingredients. Some of my findings (sketchy, because the company’s website is not at all forthcoming with details, and the Wikipedia entry is skeletal) …

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Annals of commercial naming: Bear Naked Granola

June 18, 2021

Brought to me by Facebook in recent days, advertisements for two playful trade names: one — for the Boy Smells company, offering scented candles, unisex fragrances, and (unscented) underwear, all for LGBT+-folk — covered in my 6/16 posting “Annals of commercial naming: Boy Smells”; and now, for the Bear Naked® Granola company. The two cases turn out to be very different.

Boy Smells belongs with a series of postings on this blog on dubious and unfortunate commercial names — some clearly unintentionally racy, some playfully suggestive, some openly, even brazenly, suggestive, given the nature of the establishments (Hooters). The Boy Smells company is almost painfully earnest about its LGBT+ mission, which makes its name — so evocative of teenage pong — especially unfortunate.

Bear Naked Granola, in contrast, is knee-deep in playfulness, starting with the pun on bare naked, so that on the one side, you get a reference to bears, with their fondness for nuts and fruits and honey (all relevant to granola); while on the other side, you get bare naked, suggesting purity and simplicity. And you also get the pop-culture view of bears, as cute and entertaining.

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Mitch is always DTF

March 31, 2021

(A lot about dildos and their uses, so probably not for kids or the sexually modest.)

The mail header on today’s Daily Jocks ad. DTF was new to me, but then I’m far from plugged into things — WTF I know, but DTF not, though I guessed the F is for fuck — so I had to look it up. From NOAD:

abbreviation DTF: vulgar slang down to fuck (used, typically on dating websites or apps, to indicate that a person is willing or eager to engage in sexual activity).

(Side query: how to tell when a use of fuck is narrow — a penis is inserted in a sexcavity — and when it is pragmatically broad, conveying (in the context of the moment) merely ‘engage in sexual activity’ — for which a frequent euphemism is ‘play’, which is easily understood too broadly, as covering things short of counting as sexual activity? It’s all a delicate verbal balancing act.)

Then there’s the fact that Mitch is a dildo, so it’s a bit of a stretch to talk about Mitch as always being enthusiastically ready to fuck.

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Johnny Rapid evolves

March 20, 2021

(Men’s bodies and talk about sex between men, in street language, so not at all appropriate for kids and the sexually modest)

A follow-up to my 3/13 posting “Pornstars do this so you don’t have to”, in which pornstar Johnny Rapid engages in challengingly athletic sex — in 2021 as the top in 69spitroasting (in NakedSword’s Lake Need), in 2015 as the bottom in Flying Cowboy.

Then, yesterday, in my e-mail, the HUNT e-magazine (for Falcon / NakedSword gay porn) issue 249, with the high-puffery article “Model Spotlight – Johnny Rapid”, about the actor’s evolution from the 2011-15 guy to the 2015 one:

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Fired up for the grand finale

March 1, 2021

(A right-at-the-line Daily Jocks ad today, with text that takes it over the line for kids and the sexually modest.)

The ad copy from Daily Jocks:

NEW DJX CIRCUIT
Step up your party look with the reimagined black circuit look.
Pair matching Jockstrap, Harness & Shorts.

(The name of the DJX Circuit Collection is a reference to gay circuit parties — on which, see below.)

The image is of Golden Boy (from a 2/27 posting) — hyper-masculine, with a hairy, sweaty, oiled, gold-toasted body — here with a hand in his jockstrap, and posed against a golden car.

My title for the composition:

Fired up for the grand finale,
Golden Boy jams a hand in his jockstrap

To which I’ve added a salacious caption:

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Golden Boy does a cock tease

February 27, 2021

(Hunky men performing suggestively in remarkable underwear, with a caption alluding to sex between men, so probably inadvisable for kids and the sexually modest.)

In an ad for a Daily Jocks late February sale, the model does a cock tease in his extraordinary golden shorts (DJX Liquid Shorts in gold, from the Circuit collection), with this ad copy:

Our ever popular Circuit Shorts, now available in metallic gold!

Stand out from the crowd in these unique liquid metal effect shorts, made from a premium foil-print fabric.

Featuring a secret pocket built into the waistband, perfect for storing your party essentials in. Also includes a drawcord at the waist for optimum fit. These shorts are designed to be form-fitting but still comfortable, with a light stretch in the fabric.

The ad’s image, with a caption of my own devising:

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Notes of cade oil, spikenard, and labdanum

February 23, 2021

Among the scent notes in the “unisex perfume” A City on Fire — burnt match is another, but that doesn’t require looking things up — from the Imaginary Authors company, whose remarkable fragrances come with synopses of fictitious works of extravagant fiction and with striking graphic-designer labels on their bottles.

The perfumes aren’t cheap — $95 for a 50 ml bottle ($38 for a 14 ml Traveler size, $6 for a 2 ml Sample size) — but then we don’t know how many bottles get sold, and how much the perfumes are actually worn, as opposed to being treasured and displayed as art objects with an olfactory as well as visual and textual dimensions.

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The brain health product

February 15, 2021

Yesterday’s Doonesbury has Mike (Doonesbury) and (his wife) Kim (Rosenthal) listening to a mock Prevagen® commercial in which the dietary supplement is openly hawked as a useless (but expensive) placebo for treating mild forgetfulness (with a digression in the 5th panel on a secret ingredient in it derived from the fabulously memorious jellyfish):

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