Columns 6.9.2016 03:34 pm

Advertisers, stop telling us what to do!

Thamsanqa Mkwanazi.

Thamsanqa Mkwanazi.

I do not think anyone takes kindly to being told what to do or care about.

This is exactly the feeling I get each time I am at one of those new-age urinals. I know the ladies reading this are a bit baffled right now, so let me start at the beginning.

Since we stand when we pee, urinals make sense, but these inventions of convenience need you to pee at a certain angle, and if you do not do this, your urine bounces back at you and just make a mess everywhere. If you are a guy of average intelligence, you figure it out pretty quickly and early in life.

But as with everything, there are exceptions.

There are men who simply refuse to adjust the angle of their dangles while relieving themselves, resulting in smelly loos. Hence urinals that instruct you where to point. These days, a tiny pic of a fly or a grape or something else is pasted on the inside of the urinal, ensuring we all approach the act correctly. This is the pinnacle of being told what to do and how to do it.

I feel exactly the same about celebrity-endorsed products. Marketers think just because a famous person says I must do something, I will? Why on earth would I drink a certain brand of coffee just because George Clooney says so? Or use a certain brand of spice just because Reuben Riffel says I must? And the weird thing is that these very same brands are always ready to drop these celebrities, should they drag their names through mud.

Look at how the most awarded swimmer in the world – Michael Phelps – was dropped by cereal giant Kellogg, after he was seen smoking from a bong. Then Coca-Cola axed soccer star Wayne Rooney from an advertising campaign for cheating on his wife. Speaking of that topic without tiger Woods would just be wrong. The playboy was dropped by a number of companies, such as telecoms giant AT&T. He is believed to be using “Please call me” messages to get in touch with all his extra-marital flings.

This applies to rappers who tell us to “put your hands up in the air like you don’t care”. WE care! As we well as singers who want you to sing along to their songs at a concert. We paid to see you do that, and not to be told what to do and when to do it! Thank you very much.

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