the new sex :: nature

by Eric Daryl Meyer

Notice to all advertising executives previously unaware:

If you are looking for something to irrationally associate with your product in order to compel suckers to unload their wallets in your direction, try nature. You all have had tremendous success with the sex thing, and I think it will continue to work, but if (in a flash of conscience) you realise that provocatively posed perfect people pressed into terrifically tight attire actually has nothing to do with peanut butter, cellphones, internet car insurance (or whatever you are peddling) then try nature!

In my area, there is a real estate development going up on campus. The billboard on the street pictures rounded stones in a burbling creek and brilliant green leaves with little beads of pure water glistening like jewels (I’m pretty sure that these are the sorts of things you can expect to find in your condo if you buy one!). The slogan underneath the name of the development is “design equal to nature.”

You can tell that their design is at least equal to nature by the enormous hole in the ground where nature used to be. The trees and creeks that previously occupied this land were clearly not quite equal to the bulldozers and cranes implementing this design. Neither were any of the raccoons and coyotes that might have frequented this land. They will probably name the pavement that they implant here “Oak Street” or “Coyote Circle” just to show how “natural” this place used to be.

Peter Coors regularly appears on the television in Colorado walking across sunlit fresh-fallen snow – pointing out the crystal clear water that flows down to the brewery where they churn out truck loads of beer. (From the taste of it, they don’t add much while its brewing). Again, there is some irony in using “nature” to sell your beer when your company is a notorious pollutor that has worked to loosen regulations on all levels. But it sells!

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not categorically against building or beer. And, all things considered I vastly prefer people building vertically inside the city (where everything is within walking/bussing distance) to devoting enormous tracts of land to homogenous .25 acre plots and cookie-cutter mansions (that necessitate 2.6 cars per family to go to the grocery store, or any where). I’m merely pointing out the irony of using “nature” to sell your destruction of creation.

These people are promising us that buying thier product will bring us closer nature. In reality their products simultaneously separate us from creation and degrade the creation that is “out there.”

Not that it will shock anyone, but this is one more sign that honestly is a civic virtue on the wane…

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