Thursday, February 10, 2005

Part of My Problem

For a change of scenery (and because I decided it was finally time to do laundry), I headed over to my dad's house last night. He's on vacation and I'm supposed to stop by his place a few times during the week to grab his mail, take out the garbage, etc. One of the other things I get to do is my laundry. He is kind enough to let me use his washing machine (saving the Laundromat costs and getting the bonus of being able to leave the clothes in the washer for an extra twenty minutes if I want to).

Well, I did three loads of laundry last night. I'm going to stop over there after work again tonight and do a few more. While I was at my dad's waiting for the laundry, I was forced to decide what to do. There's not much for me to do at Dad's if he's not there, so I spent a little time on his computer doing homework*.

Sitting alone in his house at night is strange. There are sounds that houses make and I was a little freaked out**. I needed background noise. Since Dad does not have iTunes set up on his computer, I turned on the t.v.

This is where you should be saying, "Beth, were you feeling okay? You hate t.v.!" Well, I don't hate t.v., I just don't watch it. I don't watch t.v. for many reasons. The main reason is there is usually nothing on at night and I get really creeped out by the commercials.

My dad pays for cable. That's at least a little helpful. I was scanning through the channels and found reruns of The X-Files. The episodes were all from the last season, the season I've only seen once and didn't remember all the details. I ended up watching four episodes in a row.

As it got later and later (or earlier and earlier depending on your point of view), the commercials changed from advertisements for movies and other t.v. shows to those ads aimed for the late-night viewer.

Two specific pieces of advertising bothered me and are the reason for this post.

The first was for a service called, "Pajama Gram". It starts out with this guy talking about St. Valentine's Day. He tells the men (whom this commercial is obviously aimed at) to 1) get the date right! It's the 14th! (Because, obviously, men can't read a calendar.) 2) Don't stoop to flowers and chocolate again, or you might sleep on the couch with the t.v. remote. 3) She wants to be spoiled!

The product being sold is a pair of pajamas. The commercial mentioned "Her version of sexy" and "Your version of sexy." The pajamas come in a "wonderful hat box!" Why the hell would a woman go, "Ooooh! A hat box! I love you honey!" It makes me want to yak. The ad goes so far to say, "And it comes with all that spa stuff women like!" Okay, so a bath is nice to take. So?

Then they say, "She'll think of you every time she puts them on! So, do you want to sleep with the pajamas or the remote?"

The next commercial was for these Vermont Teddy Bears. It is set in an office setting and these men overhear a women getting a teddy bear delivered to her at work. Then they all go crazy and order teddy bears because they think they'll get sex for purchasing a fuzzy stuffed animal.

Maybe this is my problem. I saw both of these advertisements as idiotic and demeaning to the intelligence of both men and women. Why would a woman sleep with a man just because he bought her a teddy bear? What does that cost? $20? I like pajamas and all, but I don't care if I get pj's from a man. I do agree, the whole chocolates as a present is not my ideal***. Flowers are okay, but they end up just dying and then I have to deal with the mess.

It's been eight years since I've had a date on Valentine's Day. And it wasn't planned by me. I had been seeing this guy (the jerk), and he called me up on Valentine's Day to see if I wanted to hang out. We ended up going over to another friend's house to hang out with couples and we all watched Pulp Fiction. I enjoyed it. Maybe that's my problem, I am more into violent movies than I am into teddy bears.

Someday, when I do end up dating someone, I'm going to let him know, if you want to impress me on Valentine's Day, buy me a CD or a DVD or something like that. Something that I can enjoy over and over and that I actually want. That's not hard, is it?


*My dad gave me a gift a couple of weeks ago. It's a jump drive. Some may call it a pen drive. Basically, it's a portable USB port with 256 MB that attaches to my keychain. I can put ALL of my school files on it and then work on them from any computer. This is AWESOME!

**I was scared mainly because his house was broken into before and it bothered me to think some person might walk in and try to take stuff with me there. When he was broken into, he was home, asleep in the next room. The criminal only got his DVD-player, but they also tried to take my old Nintendo system (that doesn't work), but they dropped it outside.

***I am one of those women out there that doesn't like chocolate. I can handle a little, but it's not my choice of treat. I do like white chocolate in limited quantities.