28 January 2010

More oddball adverts

Much of the Mid-west is reeling from the double blow of blizzards and the Vikings letting us down by losing the biggest game in years. 5 turnovers and yet they were still in the game- that's probably the best one can take away from it. And any suggestions that Favre is thinking about retiring will receive heavy doubt as did his un-retirement.
Now let's get to the ads.
Looks like another bearded man will be staring at us when browsing. This guy looks a bit better than the other guys. In fact it could seem a plausible man you'd see at the bar or breaking into your house. However, it seems that these marketing people have a fixation on beards and perhaps Charles Manson wannabes.


22 January 2010

More of the oddball online ads

Last time I discussed or ranted or raved about Ugly Online adverts. I found a few more that are well, kind of strange. They don't rank up there as ugly but the are the type which makes you go- "What in the world!"

The walking women ad is its own genre I believe. I've seen other animated ad like it. And what are they hawking by walking- some kind of insurance. Not sure whether how fully dressed strolling women are any enticement to click. Plus they are not particularly good looking - just kind of just above average. Maybe they have great personalities. Oh, and this ad  also falls in the Obamavertment genre too. It uses an Obama endorsement to entice the viewer. Bush could never do so well. His name doesn't suggest cool jazz.

Next, we look at another odd picture shilling unrelated services-Smilling dog and home refinancing. This one is made to appear like a video clip with the dog smiling every few seconds. Also, this is another Obamavertment. The strategy of  the Obamavertment must be to drop Obama's name in hopea of catching the fan or perhaps the boo-boy.
Hopefully, more of these ridiculous ads keep coming.

15 January 2010

What sucks: Ugly online ads

From General Photos

From General Photos
Now another infrequent entry into the the What Sucks series. This time I take a jab at ugly onlone adverts. And are they ugly!
If you are an active Internet user, and who isn't these days, you've probably seen these guys. Those ugly mugs have been hawking services online for sometime. I am not entirely sure who they are or why those faces appear in the adverts. Neither suggests a connection to the service.
A bearded guy with the annoucement "Moms Urged to go Back to School." Duh, that's a guy in the picture folks! This happens to be one of the latest interactions of the "Obama Wants Moms..." line of ads. I didn't like those ads either. It sounded like Obama was dictating an order to American mothers.
Any clue who the bearded guy is? Charles Manson impersonator? Mike Meyers as the Love Doctor? Steve Carroll from Evan Almighty? 
The one below is equally disturbing. It comes from the LowerMyBills pedigree, which historically has been a leader in annoying and ugly ads promoting means to get out of plastic debt or obtain lower mortgages. Those dancing people or whatever is dancing are of their marketing minion. An old blog details the adverts from that recent past.
The guy in this ad isn't really ugly, he just is making himself look like a big dork with the safety glasses and dentures. To the average viewer he would appear to be dimwitted and start most sentences with "Duh." I have searched all over but have found zero comments concerning this dentured guy. He has sort of a scary feel too.
Apparently this type of disconnected marketing works because it is rampant on the Net.

14 January 2010

White House gives a boost to family gardening

From The Royce Files
Though I've known about the White House vegetable garden for some time, it made some news and trumpeted pleas to eat healthy and local. The article describes how the garden has been made a good return on a $200 investment. Apparently the garden is even known to foreign dignitaries who visit the President and provide plenty of fresh food for the White House kitchen staff to make delicious and healthy meals for the First Family.
Like the Obamas, I was gardening this past year. Not sure if I got as good a return on my investment but it was fun and refreshing. I am planning on doing it again and hope to get a good return from the investment.

07 January 2010

Animators beware!

Thanks to DJ Segue tweeting this great Flash movie. Very clever and entertaining.
Here it is.

It has few similarities to one of my favorite YouTube animations.

On another note, for those of you looking for a clip from Par Ki's George M! from 20 years ago, I can't find the tape. In fact I could not find any tapes of the musicals. A shame. There are so few clips of scenes from George M! out there.

Plaudits for Richard Dunne

Still covering football today.
I found a blog post on a topic I was planning to write about- Ireland international Richard Dunne of Aston Villa. Not to be confused with Blackburn Rovers midfielder David Dunn although both men are having a decent campaign in the English Premier League this season. (As a side note Aston Villa and Blackburn were the first 2 Premier League shirts I bought years ago.)
Anyways, praise to Richard Dunne.
Man City decided to scrap their captain and fan favorite at the beginning of the season despite Dunne not wanting to leave. But the new owners must not have rated Dunne being a top defender and sold him on to Aston Villa to make way for a bunch of big money defenders. The City defense has suffered. Sorry, Micah Richards, but your form at the back has been bad.
Meanwhile, over at Villa, Dunne has proved his mettle by becoming one of the league's top defenders helping Villa crack into the top three. I think I wrote the other day that Villa have defeated Chelsea, ManU, and Liverpool. (They did lose to Liverpool over the Christmas break.) Along the way Dunne has scored thrice, almost half his total from 9 seasons with Man City. He also seems to have stepped up into the guise Roy Keane had as an Irish international. Although Dunne isn't as scrappy or opinionated as Keano, Dunne may have the courage to get Ireland back into the international fray.
Of course the whole Republic of Ireland world cup playoff story has been worn out. They played well in France and it's a shame the goal to defeat them was a hand ball. Unfortunately, chances were missed and I kind of agree with Roy Keane but without an ax to grind. But over the course of the whole qualification, France were pitiful. World Cup will be talked about later on here.
So anyways, fair play to you Richard Dunne!

06 January 2010

The most competitive Premier League yet

Some of the very first entries of this blog in 2003 were about football of the association kind (soccer to the yanks.) I have occasionally written about the sport on the blog but have not for a long time. Probably because I don't have any photos to go along with an entry.
Nonetheless, in the English Premier League we've got some fine competition this year. The usual suspects are at or near the top (ManU, Chelsea, Arsenal) but the league is not a one horse race.  A few other teams are poised to challenge the likes of the previous notably Aston Villa, Manchester City, Tottenham and yes, even Liverpool may be in the thick of the battle to top the table. 10 points separate 5th position City (and Aston Villa at 6th) from top Chelsea. ManU are 2 points off but Arsenal are 4 points off having only played 19 games thus far compared to the 20 the others have played. That's the numbers.
Although Chelsea will be without their top scorer Didier Drogba for almost a month, I doubt they will dip in form. However, they are beatable. So I wouldn't be surprised if there are a few draws in the next few weeks.
ManU will have many players returning from injury in the next weeks and so I suspect they will keep pace and may even surpass Chelsea. That is if they don't drop points to a hot Birmingham squad. Arsenal are a bit of a mystery since they have played fairly well without top mid-fielder Cesc Fabregas. Whether they gain any ground will depend on how well Fabregas returns to form. Tottenham are on a hot streak right now but the absence of Aaron Lennon in the midfield may make them vulernable but opposition isn't all that strong. Man City are having a revival of sorts since sacking their manager an installing a guy name Mancini. They actually are winning instead of drawing. If Mancini can keep City consistent and manage the big names they certainly have the depth for the title. Liverpool are probably due to improve but certainly need some players if they hope to even reach the European spots. Torres and Gerard have returned but are not in super form yet.
As for Aston Villa, getting some more scoring power up front may give them a boost. Villa has already beaten Chelsea and ManU this season.
Thankfully this season ESPN has carried some Premier League Matches. I watched Aston Villa defeat Chelsea and then caught most of Fulham's defeat of Hull. There isn't a whole lot of soccer on television stateside. There's an occasional MLS or US national team match on broadcast. Fox Sports has or had a whole channel that covered soccer. I think it may have dissolved. ESPN recently picked up some Premier League matches and I think will also show FA cup next season. 
Hopefully I have enlightened you a bit otherwise you can just read someone elses blog today.

04 January 2010

Art of the deal 10: sweater infamy

Many say the end of the year is one of the best bargain hunting times.  I say anytime of the year is a good time, that is if you have mastered the art of the deal. The pre and post Yuletide, Christmastide, shopping season affords many a bargain hunter with a myriad of flotsam of the holiday kind. Holiday fluff comes in all shapes, colors, and sizes. Most of us have bins of the stuff stacked in some closet. I am pretty sure I don't want to have more that one small box labeled: Christmas Stuff.
Thus far I have kept this promise to myself. However, this year I found myself yearning to be a bit more festive. I did not break out any decorations this year. None except a few old Christmas cards which I made to look like I received some. I only got one from my father this year.
Well on my trek home for Christmas I encountered a this festive item which also was practical.
This Eddie Bauer holiday motiff wool blend mock turtle neck sweater came into my possession for only $1. Even odder, I found it at a Dollar Tree.
Behold it in all its holidazzle.
For a size medium it really is a generous fit.
More sweaters at their holday ugliest.
And another one I designed for George Burns.