Megan's Head

A place where Megan gets off her head.

Category: meg’s moan in (Page 1 of 18)

Advertising makes me cringe

Is it just me? I can’t watch, or listen to adverts without cringing. Because BigFriendly and I cancelled DSTV and we don’t have an aerial so we can’t see anything by SCAB or Etv, I mainly hear ads on the radio, or on the odd occasion that I watch live sport.

I cringe at the copy of ads. Who writes this utter garbage? Especially the below the line budget ones. Especially the ones ‘spoken’ by the company owner *coughHirschesappliances. There are the completely unbelievable scenarios of weird people demanding product to save the day *coughMantellisgoddamnedbiscuits and the equally hideous shlockfest of mum/dad and kid all innocent and then the car accident done in sound! for a funeral policy or some other insurance thing.

Then there are the fake French/American/kugel/coloured/Afrikaans accents that make me want to die, and characters that often have nothing to do with the product at all, like that weird Afrikaans intellectually challenged man who doesn’t know what a Vape is ffs.

But by far my worst ads are the ones that assume they understand the market, and sell ‘affordable’ retirement homes, in estates that can only be afforded by the top 0.02% of South Africans, and whose tone implies that this is everyone, and all people should be making sure they can do this. They make me so embarrassed. As do ‘affordable’ car ads for R700 000, or those overseas holidays we all deserve. And this on Cape Talk Radio or 702.

There are the black Africa voices that sell wild, untamed nature to rich white people, the camp Netlorist guy who embarrasses me every single time he promises that flowers or chocolates are stylish, and fashion forward and can fix anything. There are the celebrity ad voices, like Nik Rabinowitz selling insurance and making us all paranoid about our future, and there are those ‘half ads’ read by the talk show hosts than aren’t even complete sentences, written for reading. And you can hear John Maytham tearing his hair out every time he has to read about tiles, or affordable Jaguar cars, or sales at a hardware store.

I have lost my thick skin for ads. Lies. Sies.

 

White Night

I went to a thing last night at one of our theatres. This is not about the thing itself, but more about who these things are for. There were two shows going on; one in the big theatre and another in the small one, but they were white shows, and almost all of the audience was white too. The whole feeling in the space was one of whiteness. And the whole thing felt like there were a hundred white elephants in the room. Big, old, stinky, immovable, Surf white elephants filled the space and all the white people squeezed past them and said nothing.

Now of course it is funny that I am saying this. I am white. My date was white. And most of the people I spoke to (except for the people at the door, obviously, and the ushers, obviously, and the bar people, of course) were also white. The people I spoke to and connected with are fantastic, and enwhitenened, and aware and concerned. But we were all in a huge room together in Cape Town, South Africa, and the whiteness was blinding in the night.

This is not how we change things. Almost all white casts playing to almost all white audiences is not ok. And we will pay for these mistakes if we aren’t already paying. We need to change it right now.

Menstrual Moan

So in the last week or two I have had a couple of a twitter conversations with some people who have been trying to activate and motivate government to keep to their promise of giving free sanitary pads to female school goers. I have always been opposed to the free distribution of pads because I consider them to be such a terrible, expensive, environmentally destructive item, and because there are much, much better, less advertised solutions, like the menstrual cup.

I have written a lot about the menstrual cup in the past. It is a life saver. It is a once-off expense, totally easy and safe to use, easy to keep clean, and mostly, completely liberating for women, who are then not beholden to a mega rich and exploitative industry for most of their lives.

I have always felt the deep frustration of how this brilliant product gets sidelined, particularly from an advertising point of view, in order to keep sanitary pads and tampons in business. This is a David and Goliath scenario, with women the foot soldiers.

So, yesterday I saw on twitter that the SA government had handed out menstrual cups at a school and I was so excited. I immediately retweeted and congratulated them. This felt like such progress. Yes! You would think so, right? But. In minutes I had two men questioning the safety and health of menstrual cups. Let me repeat that. Men demanding to know whether the menstrual cups had been tested. Whether there was a risk of infection. Asking me, a woman, to provide them with that information. My head nearly burst straight off my shoulders. Men saying that pads were better.

If I was a conspiracy theorist I would have thought that they were from Tampax or Maxi or whatever other huge billion dollar company is out there, their point of view was so despicably derisive. Just like the nay sayers of clean energy alternatives who own the coal mines.

I am going to need all the help I can get to fight this battle. The government needs to be praised and celebrated for this move. Let’s beg them to do it more, and often and all over. Pads will be bought and used and tossed. Menstrual cups can last a lifetime. And men who don’t like them or don’t trust them don’t have to use them.

PS. I am so curious about how many females have shares or are CEO’s of feminine ‘hygiene’ products. I suspect there are very, very few.

Random thoughts while being sick on a flight back home from running a workshop with full blown gastro

Warning – Not for the squeamish

  1. It takes forever for the last couple of rows to get their drinks
  2. Air hostesses are terrified of nausea
  3. You know things are really bad when you have enough time in the bathroom to notice the decommissioned ashtray, in the loo.
  4. You move from your perfectly fantastic aisle seat near the front to the bumpy last row so you are as close to the damn toilet as you can get.
  5. The airhostess, who has been a real grump, brings you flat coke because she is terrified of nausea.
  6. Everyone on the plane knows why you moved and went to the back. There is only ever one reason.
  7. Time goes even slower
  8. You remember everything you left out of the workshop, even though it ran over time.
  9. You realise that you are a far better actress than you are given credit for. Nobody at the workshop knew you were sick, and all were perfectly happy with the frequent toilet breaks.
  10. When you go back to the loo it is so loud you can’t hear the difference between farts and the stinky water that leaves your bum.
  11. When you go back to the loo you are grateful it is so loud because you can feel the noises you are making
  12. Drunk people eating are the worst thing to watch when nauseous on a plane
  13. When you can’t check the internet to see whether you have life threatening symptoms, even though everyone back home has had or knows someone who has had this gruesome gastro
  14. You wish you had something to eat to prevent the nausea but you gag every time you think of food.
  15. You imagine how much weight you will lose, at least
  16. You cry real tears to be home

A list of Domestic fails

  • Leaving the brand new Peaceful Sleep in the kitchen and not bringing it to the bedroom.
  • Dropping the new toilet roll and it landing in the only puddle in the bathroom.
  • Sharing the bed with dogs and cats.
  • Tupperware lids.
  • Forgetting the StaSoft when washing towels.
  • Using a blunt knife to cut cheese.
  • Throwing egg shells into a relatively empty bin bag and having the smell every time you open it.
  • Kicking the (full) dog bowl along the floor.
  • Using the remote with sticky hands.
  • Leaving the washing on the line overnight and waking up to the gentle sound of rain.

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