"Dramatization. Do Not Attempt"
Posted by codemorse
If you've watched a television commercial in the past five years, you probably recognize the title of this post. "Dramatization. Do Not Attempt" is usually printed in small white-colored words at the bottom of the television screen during 'kooky' and usually seemingly-dangerous physical stunts.
It's essentially a way for companies to cover their ass(et)es. If they display those words, then they can't be held responsible when some idiot decides that driving his SUV through the swamp at speeds of 100 mph seems like a cool idea.
But enough is enough.
During the premiere of "Heroes" (good, not great - but eminently watchable), Nissan unveiled the 'Versa' automobile. It's designed, apparently, to give you more space. During the first minute of the ad, those familiar words ran constantly at the bottom of the screen: "Dramatization. Do Not Attempt."
And what was it that we, the audience, were being warned not to attempt? Apparently, we were being warned not to bite our steering wheels comedically. Or to look frustrated while in the driver's seat of our car. Because that's literally all the commercial showed: A bunch of people looking upset/frustrated/cramped in their 'tiny' cars.
Maybe I'm a little...slow, but where's the danger in that?
Ironically, once the commercial began to show a vehicle in actual motion (lazy, easy-sunday-driving slow-motion, actually; the kind of driving your grandparents probably do) the 'warning' on the screen disappeared.
What's my point, you ask?
It's ridiculous what a Nanny-based society we've become. In the name of safety and security, we're allowing companies to treat adults like children. When I enter my car, do I really need a loud and increasingly-fast beeping sound to remind me that I haven't fastened my seat beat - in the passenger seat?
Do I really need to be told that biting my steering wheel is 'dangerous'?
Societies continue to grow and change because people take risks. And risk is a dangerous, but essential, part of life. As a culture, we've become so risk-averse that we've begun to stagnate. Lewis and Clark would never have set out into the West if they'd been as coddled and as nannied as the adults of today. Shackleton never would've braved the Artic.
But Lewis and Clark weren't consumers - the primary function of every present-day American. Their generation's notions of accomplishment didn't revolve entirely around the acquiring of meaningless status symbols. They revolved around acheivements that had nothing to do with buying a new car.