Wednesday, November 9, 2011

I Wish I Were an Oscar Mayer Wiener: a digression

For more than 45 years, a suicidefoodist earworm has been wriggling across the airways of the world. It involves stuff made from "food" animals, but the targets of its warped philosophy are... children. Human children. So enshrined in our collective unconscious is this message that it belongs with the Suicide Food Emeriti we honored in May of 2007.

What helps it rise above the dregs of advertising's sump is the flagrant insanity of its premise:

Beyond animals wishing to die so that they may find meaning in being eaten, this is children wishing—and lofting their wishes to a mindless pantheon—to be dead animals so that they may find meaning in being eaten. These kids, they've mastered the subjunctive mood (all that "I wish I were" stuff), but the basics of self-preservation and self-respect elude them.
"Oh, I'd love to be an Oscar Mayer wiener.
That is what I'd truly like to be!
'Cause if I were an Oscar Mayer wiener
Everyone would be in love with me!"
So hungry are they for acknowledgment from a society blind to their existence that they would be transformed into animals, butchered, extruded into mildly seasoned meat products, grilled, and placed on buns. If that's what it takes to receive love at last, they'll do it!

In the classic commercial from 1965, one demented boy refuses to go along with the crowd of would-be martyrs. He has no wish to die, but he is soon bullied back into the fold.

Addendum: We assume you can find examples of this death march on your own. But how about a short video on the making of the jingle?

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