Jun 22, 2009

Give me cola or give me health





We live in times of tofurkey, vitamin water, nutri bars, wheatgrass and protein suppositories. We also live in times of triple fudge burgers, diabetic size cola and deep fried anything. We are at our fittest and our fattest all at the same time and fitter is not always better, though fatter is never any good. In an era of demigoddesses and six pack absolution, you just have to wonder how much money and time people spend digesting the food adverts they come into contact with.

How many messages do we get bombarded with and how many resonate? How many times are perceptions and personnas patiently molded by sales pitches and trendy imagery? And in the end, how much can we deny the effect of insistent messages that get showered upon our senses from the day we have a consciousness?

It's almost as if we're predestined to be anorexic or obese and normalcy gets farther from us every day. Hell, just look at the logic of our existence. Want something refreshing, cool, crisp with no calories? Drink your diet cola of preference. The other option is drinking filtered tap water (DASANI), or some bullshit artesan water that's $3 a pop and is mostly artesan in the sense that it has to be considered art to fool people into paying THAT much for water.

Everyone's deepthroating the Noni and chasing it with a peanut butter Fudgy the Whale placenta saucer. We gobble both extremes hoping to find a happy middle and balance doesn't work that way. If it weren't for advanced life prolongation (I don't think we can truly call some of the shit we do to ourselves medicine), we'd probably be dead by age thirty six.

But all of this leaves me wondering, where's the grey area in nutrition? When was the last time we all just let something edible be? No, everything is improved, healthier, zero trans fat, zero carbs, 100% fiber, 250% Vitamin C and 1000% retarded. Every burger is more outrageous than the last, every health bullshit is less satisfying than the last.

If this all seems rather back and forthish, then just watch cable tv; Tivo it if you want and put up a score board where you check what's being sold to you for three hours straight. Shampoos, loan consolidation, aftershave and or shaving cream to perfectly go with the sixteen blade mach ludicrous, your weekend getaway you can't afford, a car you don't identify with and enough food to feed twelve starving nations. When you focus on the food ads, it's even more bizarre because for every Special K there's an Ore-O, for every peaceful fruit bar, there's an angry whopper and for every slimfast, there's a hand blended shake. It's like an on off switch that's eternally flipping back and forth between healthy and hearty, low fat and high octane.

Want crack in a can? Don't worry, we have enough NON FDA approved chemicals to burn through titanium and make steroid users cry bullshit. And in the crossfire of health and girth, there is the public, pinballing from one vice to the next, from eating cereal at night, to gorging five cakesters in a sitting.

One thing is for sure though, slowly but surely people are prompted to eventually pick a side. Will you give in to gluttunnous temptation or will you glorify the temple that is your body? And to be honest, though we most often go on a junk bonanza with every visit to a CVS or Walgreens where a trip for aspirin turns into a $40 splurge fest, there's still that little morsel of conscience that insists we don't want to put ourselves at risk of a pre-forty coronary.

But we continue to buy everything we can get our hands on, demostrating that the focus group that approved pickle flavored potato chips, and blue cheese raspberry dressing were right in their call. We'll seriously try most anything at least once if it's sold right. Think it's all bullshit, then look at your grocery shopping receipt and say what was necessary and what was a completely capricious whim.

After you tally up the score you're going to notice two things. One is that about half of the shit you buy, you really don't need. The second thing is that you will probably have bought equal parts bullshit healthy foods and junk crap. What this means is that we went the Red Shirt way in regards to resisting advertising efforts. For however much we try, advertising and marketing has formed part of who and what we are and who and what we represent in society. To what extent? Well I'm not totally sure. What do you think?

4 comments:

Jake P. said...

An epic rant. I've got nothing to add, but I'm on my feet, clapping.

Joker said...

jake... I was half asleep writing this and just felt the urge to see what the hell would come out. The fact that i made sense is bizarre enough. Gonna spell check it though so it can get a full clap. Glad you enjoyed though.

Erica said...

Completely.

Vitamin Water has as much sugar as Cola. You might as well drink Cola.

Joker said...

Erica: To make matters worse, it's like drinking the remnants of juice you poured extra ice into, went to check something on ebay or facebook and you return in 3 hours, obviously willing to down the disgusting syrup in the name of not letting it go to waste. Oh well.

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