Shoeless, Metal-free, and Obedient

Whenever I see this ad –

  
– all I can think is: “you’re such a professional, you always have your lunch money ready for the school bully ahead of time.”

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6 Responses to Shoeless, Metal-free, and Obedient

  1. Mr Civil Libertarian March 8, 2011 at 7:43 pm #

    In somewhat related news, the TSA seem to be providing Nintendo with anti-piracy schemes…
    http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/108298-Nintendo-Can-Disable-a-Pirates-3DS-Remotely

    Yep, everyone needs to be monitored, for the few people who pirate! (Never mind that those who create homebrew software will be caught too!)

  2. Kevin Carson March 8, 2011 at 8:18 pm #

    That commercial is obviously aimed at reinforcing the idealized self-image of type-A white collar drones who derive their sense of personal identity from the “professional” status. They see their frequency of business travel as a mark of status, and probably engage in one-upmanship with their friends about who has the most credit cards in their wallet as well — just as, ten years ago, they saw talking on a cell phone all the time as an Alpha Male thing.

    I’ve always been sickened by the whole “professional” self-identification. In the healthcare industry, a lot of nurses eat it up. Management can get some nurses to swallow any kind of abuse, so long as they depict non-compliance or complaints as “unprofessional.” It’s a lot like the house slaves who thought they were better than the people outside picking cotton because they got to wear Nice Clothes and be around Nice Things with Good Ole Massa.

    • Joe March 18, 2011 at 8:37 am #

      I hate those fuckers, too, Kevin. A couple of weeks ago, a flight I was on was cancelled. There was some problem with the plane’s water system, which meant no functioning toilets. They needed some part, which they didn’t have on-hand and couldn’t get delivered in time, etc. Anyway, there were a couple of guys in the boarding area who looked a lot like the tool in that video, obviously business travelers, and one of them said, “That’s so unprofessional!” They were the only people (that I noticed) complaining. Apparently their time was worth more than everyone else’s.

      This was on a Sunday, and there were no other flights available until Monday. I thought, “Well, at least I don’t have to go to work tomorrow.” I’m sure that was very unprofessional, too.

  3. Kevin Carson March 18, 2011 at 12:08 pm #

    Yesterday I saw an anecdote on the “Not Always Right” blog (stories about stupid customers) about a woman in full-blown power-regalia who stomped into a car dealership with her noisy shoes and said “I’m an important lawyer. I wasn’t able to get my very important papers out of the trunk for my court case because the remote stopped working.” The clerk asked: “So the manual key didn’t work either?” She turned bright red and stomped back out.

  4. Anon73 March 18, 2011 at 1:51 pm #

    I don’t know if the specific word “unprofessional” matters that much, I mean I’m sure a similar term was used on the slave plantations. I am curious though when it started to be used – if you watch older TV shows they don’t use it much so I’m guessing it’s a 21st century term?

    • Kevin Carson March 19, 2011 at 12:20 pm #

      I think it must be fairly recent. Think back to the 1950s, and how “citizen” was the paradigmatic word for how people thought of themselves in general. Book blurbs commonly announced their contents as must reads for “every citizen.” You could turn on the friggin’ Munsters and see Herman referring to himself, in a completely non-political context, as “just an average citizen” in the same sense that one of us would say “average person” or “average guy.”

      Now “professional” is used as a self-identifier in almost the same sense. A letter to Dear Abby will frequently start out with “my husband and I are professionals in our ’40s…” for questions that have nothing to do with work — the implication, presumably, being “…so this is a legitimate problem not caused by our own stupidity, as opposed to those of most of your knuckle-dragging, beer-swilling readership.”

      You can also see it in the way the term “professional” has completely eclipsed “trade” as the designation for all occupations, and the reduced respect accorded to the traditional idea of the skilled trade. Having a mere trade is so blue-collar and Archie Bunkerish, after all.

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