Ponies in holiday TV commercials

© Vergil Kanne | Dreamstime.com

© Vergil Kanne | Dreamstime.com

What a difference a year makes. Last year, according to a TV commercial, a pony was a lousy gift. This year, a pony is fondly remembered as “the bestest gift ever.”

So, isn’t that good news? Why am I grousing?

Last year, a pony was a lame Christmas gift for a teenage girl. Check out this ghost from Christmas passed:

Such a scruffy, destructive pony, too.

Flash forward to this year

Now a pony is remembered fondly as “the bestest present ever.” In case you’ve missed it, check it out this commercial:

Yikes.

But the pony is beautiful, you point out. The little girl wants her, you say.  She loves her.

Um …

Sheesh, Rhonda, you griped about last year’s cell phone commercial in that it showed ponies as burdens. Well, here’s a wanted pony.

But whoa.

First, a real pony in an all-white house? Dolly may be an “easy keeper,”  but what goes in must come out. And it’s smelly, too, no matter what the pony has been eating.

Plus, do you really think that a mom who put together that all-white living room would allow a pony in her landscaped-to-perfection backyard?

More questions come to mind. Will mom and dad have a turnout and a shelter for Dolly? Let alone a pony pal, so she won’t be alone and go all psycho?

The folks making TV nowadays may have country homes, but I wonder if they’ve ever really lived in the country — rural, agricultural America — where our food is grown and the stink of manure is often referred to as “the smell of money.”

Otherwise, there’d be no ponies standing in the house beside the living room tree. Let alone a cow living in secret in a secret basement lab of a Harvard University classroom building, as you see on the TV series Fringe .

But I digress. This is The Horsey Set Net, not Moo Cow Monitor.

Meanness in the Season of Giving

I find myself plotting revenge on behalf of little Ann-Marie, the neighbor Little Miss Lexus is so gleeful about one-upping. Ann-Marie is probably too innocent and nice to be thinking dark thoughts as she drops her white model horse in shock.

Of course, Little Miss Lexus smugly gives us the impression that Ann-Marie probably deserved as much or even worse.

Still, that little white model horse and the excitement of the neighbors makes me think that’s probably not the case. They entered that house as if they like Little Miss Lexus and her family.

But all of these petty thoughts of mine look teensy-tiny next to the big picture. I’m not the only cultural observer who raised-eyebrows at this commercial — even though Lexus certainly is basking in the old PR  guideline, bad publicity is good publicity.

Still, this part of the “December to Remember” campaign doesn’t exactly fit with the times, according to various colleagues, like a blog promoter , a cultural commentary blogger (BTW, this one has some salty language) and  The Baltimore Sun .

Most of us agree that the elitist, classist attitudes displayed in this commercial SO don’t fit with our “go green” and “help-your-neighbor-because-that-could-be-you-laid-off” times.

Still, that doesn’t mean that we can’t harbor revenge fantasies for Ann-Marie.

We can come up with something with much more style than her stealing Little Miss Lexus’s future boyfriend right before the prom.

Besides, LML seems more like the boyfriend-snatcher than Ann-Marie does.

My plan for Ann-Marie’s revenge

Revenge is a dish best served cold, although that doesn’t necessarily reflect well on the chef, unless served with a deft hand.

The best revenge is found in living well, which is what Little Miss Lexus has to say by showing off Dolly to her neighbor.

IMO, though, living well means working hard to achieve dreams that you have chosen for yourself. Which, if you’re smart, don’t involve material things.

So, it all starts the day after Christmas:

  1. Ann-Marie should get on her bicycle and pedal to the nearest lesson barn.
  2. She should tell the barn manager that she’ll work for lessons.
  3. If she’s big enough to muck stalls, great. If she’s still too small, she can clean tack, feed ponies.
  4. In the meantime, she learns all about horses.
  5. Also, in the meantime, she’s getting lessons in exchange for working at the barn.
  6. About this time, poor Dolly has gone psycho, all alone in her little paddock (let’s hope she’s still not in the living room) while she mistakes another neighbor’s chocolate Lab for a wolf stalking her. After all, horses are herd animals who, when they’re all alone, are wired to think that they’ve been staked out for tigers.
  7. Our Ann-Marie has now leased a pony, because she doesn’t want to post a “sadly outgrown” ad in the local horseman’s newspaper when she needs to upgrade her mount.
  8. Ann-Marie enjoys jumping, hunter paces (or trail rides and timed western events) and does a little dressage work.
  9. She’s also rehabbing a new rescue pony at the stable to trust humans again. She’s a small white pony named Dolly who’d been living in an inappropriate home.
  10. Ann-Marie gives smaller children lessons on the now sweet-again Dolly.
  11. Ann-Marie goes on to make straight As and goes away to college where she rides on the school’s equestrian team AND
  12. She graduates, gets a good enough job to have horses AND then
  13. She drives a hybrid dually pickup truck (we’re dreaming big, right?) that can pull a horse trailer.

She doesn’t drive a Lexus.

4 Comments
  • Nicole
    December 9, 2008

    Great post. The Lexus one kind of peeved me too. I love Anne-Marie’s revenge 🙂

  • Jackie
    December 10, 2008

    I have to admit, those commercials do kind of amuse me. It’s a funny concept, even if unrealistic and a little insensitive for the currect economic atmosphere. Every time I can see them all I can think is, “who can actually afford a Lexus this year?” I guess somebody can.

    My first thought with this commercial (this was the first time I’d seen it) was that 1. She’s already too big for that pony, what’s she going to do with her in another year? and 2. ponies are terrible Christmas presents because they are too smart and too bad.

    Good for Ann Marie and actually working for it, and doing it in a way that is actually going to be beneficial in the long run.

    I love a good satire.

  • Jackie
    December 10, 2008

    Hey Rhonda! I tagged you to do a six horsey things about yourself post. I want to learn more about you! 🙂 My six things and rules here: http://ace.regardinghorses.com/time-get-back-in-the-groove/

  • rhond7
    December 10, 2008

    Wow – we’ve been busy here. 🙂 Cool!

    Thanks, Nicole. I’m glad you enjoyed AM’s just rewards. Should I write a possible “future” for Little Miss Lexus, too? 😉 It’s likely to be less horsey, though.

    And thanks, Jackie. I hadn’t thought about LML being too big for Dolly, probably because I was blinded by that White Living Room. I’m glad you got a kick out of the post, too. I appreciate you stopping by. Thanks!

    And, yes, I’ll be happy to accept the six horsey things challenge. Stay tuned. 🙂

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