Tuesday, August 23, 2011

If only there were an escape from this. (Read on. See what I did there?)

You can’t make this up.

Well, you could but no one would believe you. This, I promise you, is entirely true.

As I drove home from work today, I thought: “Wow! I guess I don’t remember falling down and hitting my head very, very hard during the earthquake this afternoon. Because there is no way what I’m hearing on the radio could be true.” Through the magic of technology and satellite radio, I pulled over, replayed it a few times, and jotted down every word.

You may recall the song, Escape, the inexplicable number one pop hit from Rupert Holmes that told the lovely little story of an adorable couple who were bored and unhappy together. The man discovers a classified ad – match.com for the twentieth century – from a woman looking for love; a woman who sounds like she just may be the answer to his dreary, mundane relationship. He writes his own horrifying little response to her and suggests they meet in a bar where – surprise!!!!! – he encounters his wife instead. And no, it doesn’t turn ugly and accusatory. Instead, they’re equally amused by each other’s deception and rediscover that they simply love each other to pieces. (Please. I just read the lyrics again and it’s even more horrible than I remember. Detested it in 1979 and I detest it still.)

In a moment of marketing genius, I have to admit this: Ashley Madison.com could not have chosen a more appropriate tune than Escape to deliver its singular message of cheating, deception and the right approach to attracting someone other than your spouse. It’s the perfect subconscious musical cue to forty, fifty and sixty-somethings, committed to having an affair. So without further ado, I give you: the new Ashley Madison.com jingle, sung (sort of) to the tune of “Escape.”

My wife’s on Ashley Madison, looking hot as hell.

And I would totally hit that, if I didn’t know her so well.

My wife’s on Ashley Madison, I guess it’s something she needs to do.

I’d be a lot more bothered, if I weren’t there, too.

“ ______.”

To quote a favorite colleague: Christ on a bike.

If you’ve read this blog even occasionally in the past, you may recall how I feel about AM.com and her detractors. If you want to catch up, try this and this.

All that said, and all those prior posts notwithstanding, I’m kind of stunned by this jingle. Let’s review, shall we?

Leaving aside the fact that a man finds his wife’s profile on a website dedicated to matching up one cheating spouse with someone else also in a committed relationship, and his first reaction is that she looks “hot as hell”…

Leaving aside his charming expression of his own attraction to her – “I would totally hit that” - before he disparages her personality…

Leaving aside the fact that after finding her profile and then dismissing her, his only additional reaction is little more than a virtual shrug: “I guess it’s something she needs to do.”…

Leaving aside the idea that he isn’t going to cast the first stone since he is also featured there…

I am almost speechless that the text includes the correct use of the subjunctive mood: “…if I weren’t there, too.” You just don’t find that construction very often in advertising.

You also rarely find this: a promise you can take to the bank. Ashley Madison doesn’t quibble: Where affairs are guaranteed. Finally. A company with some integrity.


Marlene Ozark said...

I had never heard of Ashley Madison until today, and now I'm sorry that I have. I looked at the website and I thought I would be struck blind when I read "Life is short Have an affair." Renee, I agree with you - this is horrifying! And I never liked that song, either.

renee said...

Unreal, right?

Then again, someone once said to me: "You know? The best person to have an affair with is another married person. They have as much to lose as you do."

Maybe they figured that out at AM.com, too. I guess that's kind of like an honor-among-thieves kind of thing.

But I'm with you. The song is annoying and the 21st century web-based business it inspired to some degree is even more annoying.

And yes! The taglines on AM.com are another story altogether. They have one that goes something like: "Because if you're not cheating, you just might be cheating yourself." Dear God.

Richard said...

I had never heard of Ashley Madison until you wrote a post sometime in the past about the site. Is there some reason you check it periodically? Is there something about you we don't know? :)

renee said...

Nothing covert I can assure you.

I just listen to Howard on Sirius WAY too much and don't always press other channel buttons quickly enough when commercials begin.

Truthfully, AM spots feel like a train wreck I can't seem to avoid.