Bertriff Glavin Revues

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Get on the Brandwagon!

Way in the back of the May, 1962 issue of Popular Science was an, uuh, ad?, for brand names week. Brands needed a leg up, I guess?

Why advertise brands? They're always around, like it or not, but the Brand Names Foundation seemed to feel strongly that people weren't buying enough brand name stuff... in favor of what? Generic merchandise made by neighbors and sold in a garage sale?

Of course, this was barely The Sixties, and you couldn't buy gray market Chinese import knockoffs by companies you've never heard of on Amazon - or, god help you - Alibaba. It's odd that you can probably place more trust in an unbranded homespun doorknocker made by an old man at the farmer's market than some companies that have logos, and "TMs" and everything. Brands can help you know what to avoid buying.

In physical stores, we denizens of The Future have modern knockoff brand names to help us identify flimsy shit that will break before you even get it home. Brands like Coby, who have the arrogance to rip off not only the sound of Sony's name, but also their logo.

Even the actual Sony, who used to pretty much define quality and design, threw all that away in The Nineties and Oughties when they not only began making products with uninspired design, but tried like hell to engineer everything they made to use some weird proprietary Sony-only battery or ridiculous Sony-only memory card. Sony's memory card was the "memory stick", and it was routinely twice as expensive and not measurably better or more reliable than the standardized storage media that everyone else used: the SD card. Everything you bought from Sony was an attempt to force the customer into several years of buying stupidly expensive proprietary doodads, until finally everyone kind of decided Sony had gotten enough of their money, and decided to try giving money to companies that didn't prevent the user from routing an audio signal through a receiver and into a recording device, or perhaps used a standard type of memory media. Sony's still recovering from this era of hubris.

And don't even get me started on the Sony Rootkit thing. So, yeah. Hooray for brands! Any and all of them!

One thing Coby's got that Sony will never have? Coby's more fun to make fun of. Hooray for fake Sony!

How do you like the Brandwagon in today's ad? Wouldn't you like to possibly use it for something else? If Sony made the Brandwagon, they would hate you using it for an unintended purpose. Sony would say that's a violation of copy protection or something. The  P.A.G. Graphic Blandishment and Photoshoppery Brigade, get in here on the double! You know what to do. Wagon extract! Text out! Sony defy!

The Brandwagon is a PNG on an alpha channel background, so it's ready to hover over whatever else you've put in your son's birthday party flyer. It'll be good for his retro-hipster brand. Or, you can insert it into the document of your choice and drag it along with your mouse. You deserve a parade. You're welcome!


Back Road Driving Tips



Control Center

Joke #1 - The remaining Yahoo employees carefully monitor the account security of the remaining Yahoo user.

Joke #2 - After weeks of hearing tantalizing water cooler talk, Bryce finally decided to tune in Tokyo for himself. Hmm. He didn't see what all the fuss was about.

Joke #3 - Eager for the health benefits of stand-up desks, the team lacked the budget to re-engineer the console. So, they just put the entire room on an eighteen-inch platform.

Joke #4 - Deep inside Donald Trump's brain, the Master Control Team stood ready to dial down the insane jabber, just in case America accidentally became great on its own, before the election actually occurred.

Joke #5 - On his lunch hour, Bryce would sometimes browse eBay, looking for some cool knobs, screens, or possibly meters to put in that one last blank bay at the end of the console.

Joke #6 - "God dammit, Bryce, will you stop trying to 'friend' me."

Joke #7 - Ironically, more than half of the equipment in the room was dedicated solely to figuring out "who dealt it".

[Commenter jokes will be added to the post.   -Mgmt.]


Careful Car Care Made Care Free #1


Nescafe - Nestle makes the ver-ree best. Cof-feee.

Hey, sleepeies! Got a cuppa joe in front of you right now? Is it dehyrdated coffee? Probably not. Speaking of "dehydrated" and "probably not"... Nescafe!!!

How's the free coffee your work puts out? It's free. It's fine. Right? When's the last time you tried dehydrated coffee? Was it actually gross, or did you just make a face to avoid ridicule?

All coffee is boiled roasted bean juice extract. On its own, its flavor falls somewhere on the "bitter and gross" spectrum. Most people throw in a flavorant of some kind to make it taste okay. Still, many people consider themselves connoisseurs, despite the fact that they can't tolerate the stuff without sweetener.

FaceTube is well populated with videos of people doing blind taste tests of coffee and getting their answers sort of right and sort of wrong. A decent one is this one from Facts, an Irish channel whose videos always feature people who are funny, charming, and intolerant of bullshit, which fits with my lifelong stereotype of all people of Ireland. When the day comes that I meet an Irish person that's a pretentious poser, I'll adjust the stereotype.

The most likely truth is that people's appreciation of coffee is directly proportional to how much money they believe was spent on it.

Years ago (like, 18 years ago), when I worked at a cartoon studio, I used to occasionally indulge in International Foods' Fancy Mostly Sugar Blends of Wildly Overpriced Instant Coffe Powder. You know the ones. They come in those little square tins, designed so carefully to look like they were stolen from the breakfast bar of a fine hotel in Cicily? Remembering that (in America, at least), the ingredients on food packaging are listed in order of quantity, it's worth noting that ingredient number one on the list is sugar, followed by creamer, followed by a bunch of other things. Coffee eventually makes an appearance at ingredient number nine. Once I realized that the stuff was mostly sweetener, I moved on to regular coffee with normal sweetener in it.

Important Information

Sugar, Nondairy Creamer [Corn Syrup Solids, Partially Hydrogenated Coconut Oil, Sodium Caseinate (From Milk), Dipotassium Phosphate, Mono- and Diglycerides, Artificial Flavor], Instant Coffee, less than 2 Percent of Natural and Artificial Flavor, Sodium.

In defense of Nescafe, their ingredients are coffee. Not horrible if you don't want to make it the old fashioned way, but coffee is so cheap and quickly available for purchase at business every eighteen inches along your daily commute, why would you bother with coffee that's been stomped on by Mr. Wizard to such an extent? I know, this is an example of both the Naturalistic fallacy and the Argument form Ignorance fallacy. There's no real reason instant coffee has to be horrible.

Me? Folgers with a sploosh of milk and half a fake sugar packet. Just enough to dull the bitter so I can get it down. I'm working my way towards being able to drink it black, so I can punish myself for not getting enough sleep. Baby steps, man.

So anyway, the guy ambassador in this ad is pretty funny. Wouldn't you want him in your hard drive, for quick deployment as your avatar in whatever chat service you use to spew snobbish hyperbole about the quality of your premium boiled bean juice that you dumped two ounces of sweetened creamer into? I thought so. You're welcome! PS: No one on your chat service needs to know what the ambassador is drinking.

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