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Nov 12, 2007

Getting The Hell Out

(click for larger size)

Have you seen Absolut Vodka's new campaign illustrating what "a better world" might look like in various American cities?

In New York, art work would replace commercial signage in Times Square and 2nd Avenue would get a subway.  In Northern California a bike lane  (via would  traverse the Oakland-San Francisco Bay Bridge, and in Los Angeles (via militantangeleno), the city would reclaim the forsaken L.A. River and incorporate it into the urban infrastructure.

And then, there's New Orleans.

In the obvious read, the inbound freeway would be jammed with trucks bringing in heavy machinery for building and reconstruction.  With the flood of resources pouring in (pardon the pun), the outbound lanes would be empty as that nobody would want to leave.

I'm thinking the image might have something of a double-edge, however.  As such, I offer two alternative (if slightly less idealistic) reads.

1.  High Mileage

IN AN ABSOLUT WORLD, most residents would have the means to afford the cars and gas to actually come and go.

2.  Developer Dreams

IN AN ABSOLUT WORLD ... all that building equipment flowing in would be repair/build fair-market housing.

3.  Too Little Too Late

IN AN ABSOLUT WORLD ... the freeway heading away from the city would be wide open, so that next time everyone could get the hell out.

More kvetching here.

(image: TBWA/Chiat/Day, New York)


Worse, its an admission by a major corporate entity that New Orleans is still very f***ed up, and everybody knows it, to the extent that they are able to base a major ad campaign on the premise.

Sad. Very sad.


Nearly 80 percent of New Orleans area residents say ALCOHOL and drug addiction is the city's chief health problem

Actually contra flow was implemented in the evacuation of NOLA and has been considered a successful example of such with over 1 million having been evacuated in about 48 hours. It stands in stark contrast to the evac of Houston for Hurricane Rita in which contra flow was not implemented and became an Absolut cluster%^&*

ref : “In An Absolut World... illustrating what "a better world" might look like...

ECO-BRANDING : consuming our way today to a better tomorrow!

Eco-living is the new opiate of the masses. The captains of industry have duped you — like master magicians, they have used simple tricks and toys to divert your attention from the real source of global catastrophe, tucked securely up their sleeves. They could not be more pleased that you and your fellow self-satisfied saps expend your righteous Earth-saving efforts in pursuit not of them but of your own lighting fixtures and water bottles — while they merrily maintain an unfettered raping of the planet.

“Do you really think that the colossal effects of global warming will be staved off by household habits?

New Orleans? ... sacré bleu!

As a New Yorker, I find it highly annoying to be chided for the advertisements in Times Square -- in an advertisement. Just how objectionable do they find those advertisements, anyway?

The subtext should be more obvious. The perfect world is the one of Absolute Vodka. The only world they are selling is the one of alcoholism.

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