A first for me
May 20, 2014 by Thomas Wictor
I HATE commercials. The main reason is the music and the actors. Since I don’t watch TV, I see commercials only on the Internet. They drive me crazy. For whatever reason advertising companies use ukulele music or jinga-jinga-jinga acoustic guitar music or tinkly piano kindergarten music or smarmy Wal-Mart slop. And the actors are always freaks. The men are either hideous or plastic, the women leer terrifyingly, and the children are precocious smart alecks in need of major slappage. So here’s a first for me.
This is a great commercial.
Listen to that music. And the actress is strangely appealing. Her name is Courtney Henggeler.
I’ve always been attracted to oddballs. Ms. Henggeler isn’t conventionally beautiful, and she hasn’t ruined her face with Bototox and fillers.
She’s a woman, not a girl. I also prefer intense women. Though I don’t know a thing about Ms. Henggeler, her public persona is one of weirdness and intensity.
What I like about her in the Clorox commercial is her campy performance. The spot (that what pros call commercials) is both serious and satirical. I admire self-spoofery. Here’s a clip of Henggeler speaking. As I figured, she’s bizarre.
You can’t blame her for that atrocious piece of crap she’s in. I’d heard of The Big Bang Theory but had never seen it. And now I can’t un-see it. In researching the show, I noticed they use the Indian guy for the most lowbrow comic relief. Strange, that. Reminded me of something…
But that can’t be! All those enlightened, tolerant folks in Hollywood couldn’t possibly present hundred-year-old stereotypes in a new guise! I guess I’m just insane.
Back to eccentric women and the Clorox commercial.
I’m not a big fan of the saxophone unless it’s played that way. Here’s one of the two Beastie Boys songs I like.
Just for the sake of completism, here’s the second song.
The Beasties are just not my cup of tea. Those screamy, trebly voices are too irritating.
As for women, all the ones who’ve stolen my heart have been quirky, intelligent, funny, and possessed of an offbeat allure that most men didn’t find attractive. In fact, after “Nakamura”—the Cat Faced Ghost in the Rising Sun—and I broke up, we went through this ridiculous period in which we tried to set each other up with dates. I don’t know what her motivation was, but I’d convinced myself that suave and debonair (“swayvee and deeboner”) men found mates for their exes.
People had told me for years that when you break up, there’s no reason that you can’t be friends or even…pimps for each other? It was too stupid for words. I was just a drunk robot, so whatever I was thinking at the time was garbage.
But I set up Nakamura with a British guy named Kelvin. Nakamura didn’t care about looks, an entirely self-evident statement given the fact that she was with me for almost two years. This was Kelvin, pretty much.
The three of us met at a bar, and I introduced them. They seemed to be getting along well. When Nakamura went the to the bathroom, Kelvin turned to me, shook his head, and said, “She’s no beauty, mate.”
I wanted to deck him. Who the fuck did he think he was, with his balding head, his preying-mantis body, and his tiny face? I eventually left; Nakamura told me that he never called her. There was no reason for me to reveal that he found her grotesque. She was extremely sensitive about her appearance, which I couldn’t understand at the time.
What I’ve learned, though, is that if someone feels ugly, there’s nothing you can do to change their minds. They feel ugly because someone made them feel that way. It’s not society, or men, or culture, or movies, or TV, or dolls. It’s Mom and Dad. Time to stop with the BS. Parents are the great destroyers when it comes to self-esteem.
Not all parents, of course. I wrote before about a woman at my college who had a port-wine stain that covered half her face. After talking with her for an hour, I understood why everywhere she went, there was a conga line of men following her. She was easily one of the most attractive, sexy women I’ve met.
Here’s what happened: When she got old enough to notice, she asked her parents what that thing on her face was, and they told her. They also said that it meant nothing, and anybody who didn’t like her because of it wasn’t worth even a second of her time.
So she didn’t care how she looked, and that made her beautiful. I used to despise my body. My flat-topped head really bothered me. Here’s Mom and Pat home from the hospital, February 1, 1966, the first day I saw my younger brother. That’s Paul with the cap on his round head.
My sister once said that my head was flat enough to land an airplane on it. Well, guess what? She was right.
Now that I no longer care about my appearance, nobody else who matters cares either. The secret to avoiding so much angst was there all along.
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