Friday, March 26, 2010

Peer Response

In response to Esperanza’s blog post about ProActiv solution and all the different endorsements they have gotten, I feel the exact same way. After I started reading her blogpost, I found myself taking the words right out of her mouth. Oh, and Esperanza another name you can add to that already long list of celebrities is Jennifer Love Hewitt. Pro active has just been throwing name after name to endorse their product. Most of these people who have endorsed this product may have had some acne problems when they were young but nothing too bad. The photos they always show the before pictures of the celebrities, and to me they seem to be altered. There are many other methods out there to help get rid of acne, and not to mention cost much less. I consider ProActiv to be a last resort before going to the doctor. In other words by asking for ProActive, you are saying everything else has failed, so now it’s time to bring out the heavy weaponry; or the “Nukes”. Even through some endorsements work on a certain target audience, I feel confidently that 75% of the time they will have no effect other than entertainment. Some could argue that entertainment is a goal the company is trying to get across, and I would agree with that. If they throw their product name in a funny skit you are most likely to describe the commercial by the name of the product. So long as the name of the product is being said out loud, on the street, on a bus, or at work; It’s free advertising.

Analysis of a celebrity endorsement

The brand of margarine “I can’t believe it’s not butter” came onto United States shelves in 1986. Since then it has claimed labeling such as “No Trans Fat!” and, “Naturally Cholesterol Free!” in hopes of selling the product. The margarine vs. butter debate has been going on in the United States for quite some time and given some ‘False images’ to both products. Since the debate has heated down, the marketing strategy has moved from pointing the blame finger, to endorsements and other forms of mass communication. Ozzy Osbourne, the legendary rock star notable for his personal appearance and for biting the head off a bat at a live concert, signed to endorse this product.

The reason for Osbourne agreeing to promote and endorse this product confuses me because he does not seem like the type of person who cooks. Maybe if he had cooked the bat on stage before he bit the head off, this endorsement might hold SOME water; but it would still cause some confusion among others. The endorsement might have been successful, but it certainly doesn’t make me want to run out and buy a tub. The only way to tell if this endorsement was a success is if you were working on the marketing team for “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter”. However I can say that this endorsement did not have a negative effect, because you can still find this product on shelves nationwide. In a poll taken by, 87.5% of the answers were “No!” to the question ‘Do Celebrities Influence Your Decision To Buy A Company’s Product” this poll is evidence for my argument that the commercials and endorsements are only there for entertainment. Most of the times when people see a funny commercial or see a funny add in a magazine they look for the celebrity. They want to see how low of a level they will stoop to just to make some money.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Demonstration speech self-evaluation

In my Life Science 100 class I gave a speech on how to properly apply camouflage face paint. This topic worked very well for me because I am very interested in the art of stealth and the new improvements in this field of study. Because I knew a lot about this topic I was able to explain some in depth reasoning, as to why you follow certain steps. After reviewing a video of my speech, I was able to notice that my biggest strength ended up being one of my weaknesses.
I was able to recall information as to what makes camouflage work, but spent too much time in depth. The good news is that I was able to break down the techniques into 3 easy steps; Base, cross, and blend. These three steps were able to turn a whole complex art form into something basic and simple. My physical presentation has never been an issue for any speeches I have done. When looking at a video of my speech I was able to see that I was moving around a lot, and showing lots of enthusiasm towards my demonstration. However, through I spoke at a good volume, there were times that I turned around and kept talking; making it seem as though I was mumbling. I think the best part of the speech was the fact that I brought in face paint and demonstrated, not only on myself, but on a brave volunteer as well. The second we applied that base layer and looked up with green faces, every single person in the room was drawn in; I mean how often to people show up to class with a green face?
If I had a chance to redo my speech I would look into shortening the length of it and not getting to in depth. Also I need to learn to stop talking when I am not facing the audience. Overall I feel the speech went well (Minus the time limit) , and think that everyone enjoyed watching it.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Prepare a Meal

The meal I prepared for my family was typical Italian pasta and sausage. The steps are as follows...

1) Planning, it is very hard to find authentic Italian food that has not been "modernized". Meaning that it has become a major brand (I.e. Ragu, Chef Boyardee)and lost its authenticity. So I went to Frabonis Italian Deli on the corner of Regent St. and Park St. There I was able to buy some 'home made' spicy Italian sausage, Italian meatballs, local mozzarella cheese, fresh tomato's and hand made pasta noodles.

2) Preparation, I then went home and put some water in a pot and waited for it to come to a boil. once the water was boiling I put the pasta in the pot and let it sit for about 5 min. during that time I washed the tomato's and made tomato paste/sauce to go into the pasta. once the past was cooked I drained most of the water and added the tomato paste/sauce into the pot. once the sauce came to a simmer I added in the sausage and meatballs (Pre-cooked in the oven), sugar, and wine. I let everything cook in the pot for about 10 min (***important note: keep stirring the sauce so it does not stick to the side of the pot) Then it is ready to serve to the entire family.

3) Consumption, There is no better feeling than sitting around a large table with your family and eating a nice home cooked meal. we popped out some wine and fresh bread to make to meal much more pleasant. I will say the pasta was Molto Buono!

After reading Chapter 1, section 7 of Michael Pollen's book " In Defense of Food" it makes me feel heartbroken that we have shifted to a point where food is only seen as nutrition and not as a social event. Growing up as an Italian, Family dinner was the highlight of the day. My grandmothers motto was " You work hard all day and come home to the best tasting food, thats how you live a good life". The "modernized" Italian food has completely changed the cultural background involving food preparation. No there is canned pasta and microwavable dishes that take the fun out of preparation. What came as a savior to my eyes was the blog Italian food forever which helps people learn about the history of some Italian dishes, and most importantly, how to make them.