Culture

Monetize Now!

The Internet, like much of the aboveground bits of this swiftly tilting planet*, is chock-full of folk wishing to sell me their wares. Please note, the latter part of the previous sentence used to be, “chock-full of clueless dim bulbs trying to flog me their dodgy crap.”

But it’s FebFast see and I’m trying to curb my tongue. Confused?  Where others are taking the opportunity to stop nudging the grape for a month, I am virtually teetotal. And although that claim may sound like bulldust, I have spent hours of my life explaining to disbelieving Australians that I would rather not have a beer. If you’ve never uttered such a thing, then believe me, it’s practically a treasonous sentence in this country. It is tantamount to saying that Don Bradman wasn’t too handy with a bat or that Phar Lap was a slow-moving bandy-legged nag whilst one soaks the Aussie flag in lighter fluid and flicks it with lit matches.

“No thanks I don’t drink,” is viewed by others as the opening salvo in some kind of moral superiority blitzkrieg. I say, “Look, I don’t think alcohol is good for my health.” They hear, “I am so much better than you are, that I have the strength of character to not drink – you weak bastard.”  The most memorable reply I ever had fired back at me was, “I don’t trust anyone who doesn’t drink.”  I later learnt that this particular person came from a hard-drinking, abusive family, which made the vehemence of the assertion all the more poignant.

Since my not drinking is about as challenging as a Karl Stefnovic interview, I’m using FebFast as a break from being such a smart aleck online. I’m pretty sure I can make it.

This blog post is, so far, one big tangent, so travel with me a little further on the Phil Jeng Kane Digression Tour. I was looking for a photo to replace my Facebook Profile Pic. I thought an Easter Island Statue might be appropriate. I did a Google Image search and my eye was drawn to the rather poorly Photoshopped image below.

It was a budget travel website that I won’t name. Let’s face it, they don’t deserve our business.  Someone clearly thought they needed to talk up Easter Island as a Hot Woman destination rather than promote its rather stodgy reputation as the home of amazing statuary.  Sure you can experience a modern wonder, but check out young Natalie from Wellington, she’s got it going on AND she likes mysterious sculptures just like you do!

But Chile’s Torres del Paine needed even more in the way of Hot Woman marketing. Despite being the home of great hiking, towering granite peaks, and spectacular lakes (according to the site) this was the image they used to sell this destination.

I guess she could be wearing a pair of Van Gorkom hiking books.

So sex sells. We know this. But these images are poorly produced and seem to be selling vacation destinations that aren’t about having a hedonistic good time. Using these particular pictures for this purpose makes as much sense as using them to raise ratepayer awareness of municipal services.

Actually, have you seen the City of Melville website? It’s pretty drab. Maybe the municipal hotties concept is an idea whose time has come. Naturally, if this is going to work, then we need Hot Men, too. A calendar! Coffee mugs! Mouse pads! Does anyone use a mouse pad anymore?

I’ll get back to you.

Phil Jeng Kane

*Apologies to  Madeleine L’Engle and Conrad Aiken

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