ad people just aren’t good at math

Continuing with the theme of featuring people who don’t work in advertising talking about advertising (it’s kind of like a Bob Garfield column except not inane, pompous and wrongheaded), the writers of baseball/sports blog Fire Joe Morgan came across an ad on during the Olympics that just didn’t make any sense.

You can watch the ad here if you want to see it first and come to your own conclusions about it like any rational, free-thinking person of intelligence would do.

Or you can just read on because there’s a little précis on it that does the job just as well.

Though if you read about it you’ll miss Kerri Walsh in her bikini (…and Steve Hall clicks furiously on the link).

Let’s just get on with it:

The ad in question features a bunch of dudes who are trying to play volleyball, and the reveal is that they’re being beaten soundly by Kerri Walsh, of the U.S. Women’s Beach Volleyball team. Really great stuff, sure, but one line towards the end is so dumb I had to post it on this blog about baseball (or whatever this blog is — I have no idea anymore).

After defeating the guys on the other side again, the ball rolls up to Kerri’s feet. As if to rub it in their faces, she says: “Best seven out of twelve?”

Then in my really mild fantasy, the commercial ends like this:

Guy 1: I’m sorry — best seven out of twelve?
Guy 2: Are you sure you don’t mean, just, first to seven? Or best of thirteen? I mean, that’d be the same thing. You could say either of those things and it would make sense.
Guy 3: Maybe she means best out of seven. That would make sense too.
Kerri Walsh: No, no. Best seven out of twelve. First to seven. Even if it takes twelve games.
Guy 2: Okay, but, no, because, um, what if we tie, 6-6?
Guy 1: What if — wait, let me think for…okay, yeah — what if she means, we put our best seven games from a larger twelve game set, and compare that with her best seven games from the same larger set of twelve. Is that what you meant?
Kerri Walsh: [silence]
Guy 2: How many people —
Kerri Walsh: Best seven out of twelve.
Guy 2: How many people laid eyes on that line before it got into the final print of this commercial. Eight? Twenty? Forty, probably, right? At least forty?
Director [off-camera]: Fifty one!
Guy 3: Wow.
Kerri Walsh: I didn’t think about…I just…my Mom was…best seven out of twelve.
[three minutes of nothing but Kerri Walsh crying]
Announcer: Twenty Four Fitness! Shove it up your own butthole!


One response to “ad people just aren’t good at math

  1. I think these are Barkley spots (, the same cats that do the Sonic work.

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