Saturday, January 3, 2009

The Nateys

Around this time of year, two worlds nearly collide. The first one comes from print media. It's the 'I'm going to mail it in and just write a best of the year column.' They make best of/worst of lists for everything. I'm pretty sure they just don't want to work between Christmas and New Years, so they just keep a running list of stuff though the year and slap it into column form. The second world is award show season. Tis the season for the Oscars, Emmys, People's Choice, CMA, and Source awards. Pretty much every award show happens in the next couple of months, except for some of the country music award shows. They tend to give different shaped awards out quarterly. I think it's because the viewing public really likes the tuxedo with a cowboy hat combo. 

Since we're right between the 'best of' list season and the awards show season, I thought I would come up with my own awards - The Nateys. It's sort of like an awards show, but it isn't televised. It's basically just me standing on the red carpet in a tuxedo. And by red carpet, I mean the red welcome mat that we have by the door, and by tuxedo, I mean I could probably throw on a suit since my dry cleaning bag is sitting next to me on the couch. If Cojo, Seacrest, and the Rivers gals could see me now.

The Nateys recognize outstanding achievement in television commercials. It's about me trying to do my part to save commercials from obscurity. With the advent of the DVR and online marketing, TV ads aren't receiving the attention that they deserve. The Nateys are judged entirely by me (with a little help from Gilbert). Yes, it's true that I don't have any knowledge of the advertising industry, but I do watch a lot of TV. My TV is on anywhere from 16-18 hours per day, so I think I'm qualified. Oh, and the categories are being made up as I go, and they are by no means complete. I limit my posting time to 30 minutes per post, so I'm sure I've overlooked some outstanding achievement, but my made up rules are my made up rules. So here they are, Your (or my) 2008 Nateys:

Category: Catchiest jingles that I wish I would stop singing
Winners: Subway - Five Dollar Foot long and Verizon/Beyonce - Lemme Lemme Upgrade
Explaination: This is Beyonce's third nomination and second win. Not really, but that's what they say when the star is walking up to the stage. That song is so damn catchy. I don't even use Verizon, but for some reason I really want to upgrade. Lemme lemme. Actually not sure if it's Verizon or some other carrier, but whatever. For Subway, it isn't that great of a song. I'm just glad that Jared the Subway Guy has not been asked to sing this song yet. If Jared sings the $5 foot long song sometime in 2009, we will strip them of this award.

Editor's Note: Yes, there can be ties in The Nateys. Sometimes two of my thoughts actually are connected. Besides, this separates us from all of those other award shows.

Category: Worst Commercial in the world. Ever. 
Winner: Toyota - Save by Zero
Explanation: What the hell is this garbage? I don't even know what this means. I like Toyota. I really do. I own one. My dad owns one. My sister owns one. This commercial does not make me want to go out and buy another Toyota. It actually makes me want to go out to the driveway and key my highlander. Just put a big scratch right down the side. Sorry about the anger here, but I'm really passionate about this one. I did some research, and there are actually facebook groups devoted to the cause of ending this ad campaign. I think that says it all.

Category: The Heather Graham Award. This award is named after the star of the smash hit "Emily's Reasons Why Not." It is given to the star who has more prime time commercials promoting their show than actual episodes. If your show is cancelled after one show, then you're probably a nominee.
Winner: Christian Slater, My Own Worst Enemy
Explanation: I have a theory that this show was actually cancelled before the first episode aired. I think that the NBC execs were sitting around watching The Office when one of the "My Own Worst Enemy" commercials came on. And then another one came on. And then another. One of the execs then said something to the effect of "This is garbage. Whose idea was this? Make it stop. My stomach hurts." And then the show was cancelled. Again, it's just a theory, but a well-deserved win for Slater and the former NBC exec who signed off of this train wreck.

Category: The most underrated tag line
Winner: Clear Blue Easy pregnancy test - "The most advanced technology you'll ever pee on."
Explanation: I think the tag line speaks for itself. That's fantastic, even if it isn't true. I mean, there's always a chance that I'll pee on a laptop or car or maybe even a fax machine. The loyal readers (all five of them) know that I think fax machines are the most advanced technology ever, basically because I don't understand how they work. Sorry, that's a bit of a tangent. Put your hands together for the ad wizards at Clear Blue Easy!

Category: The "I was once a respected celebrity but this commercial proves that I'm now on the D-list" Award
Winners: Denis Leary (Ford Trucks) and Keith Sweat (McDonald's Nuggnuts)
Explanation: I'll admit that I was once a Denis Leary fan. Kate doesn't like him. She'll say things like "Oh, he's vulgar" when one of his specials come on Comedy Central. At this time I usually say that she sounds like a grandma. That's neither here nor there. Anyway, the guy was once pretty famous. Now he's telling me about torque and payload. Whatever happened to "I think you hear me knocking, and I think I'm coming in." Oh, and Keith Sweat. I guess he wasn't all that famous to begin with, but singing R&B slow jams about pieces of fake chicken is even beneath him. I am, however, going to start using 'nuggnuts' in conversational English and see if it catches on. Instead of saying "Man, that's crazy" I'm going to say "Dawg, that's nuggnuts." Okay, I probably won't say 'dawg' but the rest is true. I did this once with 'smurfy' when I was in college, just like most of the smurfs do. I think this is when I was waking up in the middle of the night to watch the Smurfs (see previous post). Stayed tuned for a future post on "annoying stuff I did in college." I think I'll write that one tomorrow.

Category: The Beatles Award. Going to the artist, duo or group whose song should never ever be in a commercial but is
Winners: Three Dog Night - Shambala and David Bowie - Space Oddity
Explanation: Bowie is not going to make me want to buy a Lincoln. Put on eyeliner and blush? Maybe. Buy a Lincoln? Never. And Shambala is by far Three Dog Night's best song. I love it. I bought the album off of a homeless man selling CDs out of his trunk along with a Belinda Carlyse album and a Motley Crue album (ask Kate about that one - she was pissed). But I really don't need to hear the song in a Michelob commercial. I like beer. I like Three Dog Night. I just don't like them together. I think Behind the Music told me that the lead singer sold his Grammy for crack money. I guess selling your song to a beer company isn't that much of a stretch. Come to think of it, I hope he doesn't sell his Natey for crack money. Would that make me an enabler?

Category: The 'Oops I Crapped My Pants' Lifetime Achievement Award. This is given to the commercial parody that has consistently made me laugh though the years every time I watch the rerun on E! or Comedy Central.
Winner: Sam Waterston (the dude from Law and Order) - Old Glory Robot Insurance.
Explanation: Well, it's just really, really funny. And then you see the dramatization of the 50s-era robot eating the old people's medicine. Good lord that's funny.

Well, the music is playing. That means it's time for me to get off the stage. I've hit my self-imposed 30 minute limit. Please add your own fake categories and fake award winners as comments. Those can be like our version of the "earlier this week, the following awards were given for scientific and technical achievement."


Kath said...

You overlooked a big jingle nominee: Morris-Jenkins.

"Late last night I woke up sweating in my bed, that old air condition, it was completely dead, so I called Morris-Jenkins and they very kindly said, you'll have cool your"

Best. Ever.

Nate said...

Oh, if we're going to include local commercials, I'd add Showmars for 'worst testimonials' award. And maybe Game Show Gary for worst lottery commercial. Morris-Jenkins is pretty awful.

Matt said...

Speaking of local commercials, every time I see that local car dealership that heavily features the owner's daughter, I want to angrily write a letter to him saying something like, "I see you're grooming your daughter to be just like every other car-whore-skank out there."

Also Scott Clark looks like a horrible zombie molester.

Matt said...

P.S. By "horrible zombie molester," I mean he is a zombie and molests people, not that he's a molester of zombies.

P.P.S. Kath says her hair has never looked better after NOT blow drying it. Seems like relevant news to pass on.

Nate said...


Liz said...

I just need you to know that I detest the word "nuggnuts."

It makes me never want McDonald's again, and that's big because I freaking love those Sausage and Egg Muffins.

Please, for the love, don't start saying "nuggnuts."

Nate said...

Liz, I can't believe you hate it. so nuggnuts, I can't believe it!

It is a terrible word, I just really want to start a trend.

As the great Regina George said in Mean Girls:

Gretchen, stop trying to make 'fetch' happen. It's not going to happen.

Nate said...

Update: Subway has just been stripped of their Natey award. Jared the Subway guy is on the CBS NFL Pregame show right now and just said/sang the 'five dollar footlong' song. I explicitly said that they could not use him on this ad campaign. Subway, please return your award.

Cat said...

Hey Nate,

I just found your blog through Kath's and I just had to tell you:


You had me cracking up with the Toyota award. I, too, own one, and my dad pridefully still owns his beat-up '88 Toyota pick-up, but that slogan of theirs has got to go. I think I now have to go join that facebook group.

Anyway, I just wanted to give you some encouragement and tell you that you now have a reader whom you do not personally know. Please tell Kath thanks for posting your blog on hers. And thanks for the good laugh, Nate. :o)

Nate said...

Thanks Cat! I think reading blogs of people you don't personally know is absolutely okay. At least that's what I tell myself when I read all of my wife's food blogs (See Bride Run; Eat, Live Run; Oh She Glows, the list goes on).

Nate said...

VH1 just told me that the Bud Light "Real Men of Genius" guy is the former lead singer of Survivor. That's right, the guy who wrote and sang Eye of the Tiger is also talking about Mr. Big Cooler Cooler Roller. Amazing.

Holly M said...

Seriously, Sam Waterston deserves an OSCAR for being able to say 'Don't cower under your afghans any longer' with a (mostly) straight face.

Nate said...

It is Waterston's best work. But I think his Natey is more valuable than any Oscar could ever be.

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