‘Tis the Season for Jingle Testicles- I Mean Balls

Taking a break from homework and NaNoWriMo, I came across this video (as did 7 million other people):

If you haven’t been keeping up with the world wide interwebs, the above ad is for Kmart’s Joe Boxer briefs with that commercial flavor of Christmas we all know and love. Hilarious, right? If you don’t think so, please leave. Now.

I’m kidding. I love you. But I’m not sorry to say that if you were offended by it, we likely wouldn’t get along all too well. Unsurprisingly, in this largely coddled and politically correct society we inhabit, many people got their panties in a bunch and unleashed their self-righteousness on Kmart’s Facebook page:

“I wanted to post that I found your new commercial, (male dancers scantly clothed doing a holiday rendition) to be less than family friendly. If you are so desperate for customers that you need to be that degrading then you will probably never bring your numbers back… I will not be shopping your store this Christmas season.”

KMart Facebook Joe Boxers Jingle Bells Controversy

“Your ad “Show Your Joe” focusing on several men wearing Joe Boxer shorts thrusting to the tune of Jingle Bells is disgusting.

Your commercial is airing during primetime even during Christmas movies on family networks such as the Hallmark Channel, which families will likely watch together. Kmart should be more responsible in your marketing decisions. I am a parent and a consumer I am disgusted by your recent marketing choices.

A very concerned parent”

Of course these people have the right to their opinion just like anyone else and as much as I would like to be nice and respectful to everyone crying out against this ad…

Get over yourselves, you oversensitive fuddy-duddies with your classy sensibilities and “family values.”

And that’s all I really want to say in a nutshell, lest I get carried away and start frothing at the mouth like some of the commenters on the Facebook page and elsewhere.

To be fair, this isn’t the primary consensus. Actually, more people seem to love it more than hate it, pointing out that this ad is far tamer, less exploitative, and more fun than… pretty much any other ad that features scantily clad men or women shilling products not even related to naked bodies. Does this mean that minor exploitation is acceptable because it’s not as “bad” as a GoDaddy ad? Not necessarily. But it helps put ads like “Show Your Joe” in a broader perspective.

It’s just irritating hearing “think of the children” kind of arguments. As if every little thing that could even so much as be misconstrued as lewd/crass/disgusting/mean-spirited would shatter the morality of any and all children. Are we somehow ashamed or afraid to have to explain to our children what testicles are? That’s messed up. Instead of shielding our children from men shaking their jingle balls in holiday-themed boxer briefs, we should let them absorb it in their own way and give them a bit of guidance here and there. What kid is going to explicitly associate a line of silly men dancing in their underwear to a Chippendale’s show with man candy flopping their Kris Kringles around? “Tee hee, nuts.” What’s so harmful about that? Stop telling our children that genitals are morally icky or whatever…

But the moral fiber of our youth (which still includes me?) is a topic for another day.

Oh, and the woman who called the ad “tacky…” I’m sorry, have you not experienced Christmas in the United States before? Ok. I’m done.

In conclusion:

You know I don’t often comment on viral current events, especially concerning people ranting ridiculous on the Internet, but I actually really liked this ad. It made me laugh and I found it endearing (among other things). Stay laughing, my friends.

What do you think of the ad? Do you think Kmart knew it would be controversial? Share your thoughts in the comments.

Read on:

On the Fourth Day of Dead Week

Deck the halls with sticky notes, dry erase markings, and shreds of the tattered and battered remains of our sanity as we enter our favorite time of year: Dead Week.

By “we,” I refer to students. And by “year,” I mean term, whether it’s a quarter, trimester, or semester. So… Fa la la la la, la la la la.

The only things standing between us and – nay, guarding with bared teeth and chesty growl – winter freedom are finals. Ah, finals, our old friend. It seems like only a few weeks have passed since we had to encounter your cousins, the midterms. Why so eager for a family reunion? I assure you the midterms were more than enough to tide us over for[ever] a very long time. So please, continue staying at bay off in the distance. Believe us: we like you better there. It’s almost better than having you behind us and out of sight.

Fellow college students, never fear. Hang in there. Stay strong. And golden. For the freedom that lay before us at the end of the following week shall be sweet and pure and holy. Just a few more days, fellow academic warriors, but tonight… we dine in hell – the hell of cramming and crying and procrastinating and repeating. So eat heartily, my friends, and then revel in the just desserts on the horizon, with the sweet corn syrup of success and triumph dripping down your chin.

Study hard and study long! For on the morrow, the winter break is yours for the taking!


THIS IS… an overused meme.

Good luck. And de-stress in the comments section.

‘Twas the Night Before College

Dedicated to my fellow victims of pre-college jitters.

‘Twas the night before college, when all through my head
My thoughts formed a clutter of worry and dread.
The fears of what lay ahead of me were deep,
Preventing my mind from getting some sleep.

I sprang from my bed in my jittery distress.
“If I don’t sleep right now, I’ll wake up a hot mess.”
But these questions wouldn’t stop agitating my mind,
Bombarding me from the front and from the behind.

Will there be people I meet, who will like me for me?
Or will I have to compete in a social Grand Prix?
I’ll oil my engine and shine up my hood.
Heck, who am I kidding? I’m a loner for good.

Is everything ready, my supplies all set?
Is there anything that I happened to forget?
What if I’m late or I can’t find my class?
And what if I make myself look like an ass?

“Stop being so glum,” I said under my breath,
“You’ll choke in your stress and worry to death.”
So I tried to imagine the best case scenario,
But only succeeded in thoughts “au contrario”:

“You loser! You failure! You stupid, dumb idjit!
You’re foolish! You’re hopeless, you slow-minded nitwit!
Don’t open your mouth for fear you might spread,
Your numbskull ideas and your IQ of bread!”

Well, that didn’t help. Good Lord, was I sweating?
Who knew that college could be so upsetting?
And I’d yet to start. It was still Sunday evening.
I had a few hours left before I’d be leaving.

No sugarplum visions would waltz in my head.
I’d be screaming of nightmares if I ever got to bed.
It was like Christmas eve, except without all the joys.
And without the fresh cookies and waiting for toys.

It was more like death row and I’d committed one crime:
Failed college in a day – a Guinness record of time.
I’d eaten my meal that I’d blandly requested,
A plate full of nerves, which I sourly ingested.

At that moment I looked at the mirror beside me,
And I jolted upright as I saw my own zombie.
My eyes – how they drooped. My dimples – how bleak!
My cheeks were like ashtrays. My nose sprang a leak.

This couldn’t be healthy. I mean, what the heck?
It was like Halloween from my scalp to my neck.
I had class in the morning! I needed some sleep!
I did everything from poetry to counting some sheep.

So I went back to bed and I pulled closed my eyes
And changed up my strategy by thinking of lies
Of good things happening on my first day of classes,
Instead of me drowning in my mind of molasses.

At first, it was tough because of the jitters.
It was worse than Starbuck’s apple pie fritters*.
But after a while, my mind settled down,
And giving a snort, I was knocked outta’ town.

Off to the land of “La La’s” I went,
Where no drop of fun was left unspent.
As soon as I reached my own slice of heaven –
“Holy crap! It’s noon! Class started at eleven!”

* I don’t think Starbuck’s apple pie fritters are bad. I just needed something to rhyme with “jitters,” so don’t sue me.