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/// OP-ED E-MAILS TO BLIGHTY | by David Smith MEAN & SOBER | by Stad DiPonzi Og Mandino America’s Wal-Mart Wolverine


purchased at Wal-Mart. These individuals are summarily judged – based on appearance and/ or behavior – to have never gone to the school, and therefore not be deserving of the $12 t-shirt. “Don’t they get under


I


your skin?” he asked, know- ing I went to UofM. Unlike many in GR, I don’t wear my school on my sleeve, car bumper or anywhere else, but whatever. “Nope.” If non-UM grads buy that


crap at Wal-Mart, Big Lots, Macy’s or Neiman’s, it increases school royalty checks and, god will- ing, reduces fund-raising calls to me. I guess I got the


WMW concept in theory, but not in spir- it. Then I caught a glimpse of Sarah Palin’s ulcer-inducing tour bus, complete with a giant image of the Constitution. “WE THE PEOPLE” seemed thrown across the vehicle’s front corner like a trophy deer. As I noodled the inevitability of the Palin


circus rolling in to kiss the rings of our local theocratic donor base, that big ol’ sticker on that bus continued to nag at me. Granted, Palin is only the latest tea party pimp to hold up the Constitution as her raison d’être (see, I did go to UM), but seeing it displayed like that got under my skin. But why?


LEARNED A NEW PHRASE this summer: “Wal-Mart Wolverine” (WMW). According to a colleague (MSU grad), WMW’s wear UofM clothing presumably


Then I had the epiphany – Sarah Palin


was my “Wal-Mart Wolverine.” I could care less if someone wears a Michigan shirt without knowing Avogadro’s number. But if you deny things like the establishment clause or Article Six, you shouldn’t get to put that particular document on your media mobile. If you dislike immigration so much you might repeal the 14th Amendment, you shouldn’t get


to flippantly, cynically, simulta- neously use the Constitution as red meat for xenophobic cul de sac moms. I am no Constitu-tional scholar, but I do know political


and commercial opportunism when I see it. People who want to get indignant about the misuse of a logo, image or idea need to get a bit beyond ESPN-U on the dish. I could give a tin shit if Peter Secchia wipes his ass with Bo Schembechler’s picture. What I cannot deal


with is the selective, blatant, ignorant use of history in a social/political branding campaign. When Sarah’s bus pulls up in front of


the Amway, as I think it probably will, I just might be there waiting with balloons filled with maize and blue paint. I did go to the school, after all. n


SDP knew he needed to hurry up and graduate when the penalty for possession in Ann Arbor jumped from a $5 fine to $25 back in the day.


There’s a lot of shouting over here, especially when someone is trying to sell you some- thing. There was a beardy weirdy called Billy May who used to scream out my TV at me. He was trying to convey the usefulness of various sponges in such a violent manner, it eventually killed him. Sad, but perhaps not surprising. Another loud chap tried to sell me “Shamwows.” I bought one, but it was just a crap towel. He was more quirky, but still loud and he ended up disgraced after doing cocaine off the boobies of a lady of the night. Now there is an English bloke trying to take over their mantle. He bellows about mops in an Anglo-American accent. I’d imagine he will be found molesting chickens at some stage.


Of course, in Blighty, we have a sensible piece of legislation called the Trade Descriptions Act 1968 that prevents companies from misleading consumers as to what they are spend- ing their money on. They don’t have that here, so there are millions of “best” products. There are at least 17 ‘America’s Favourite’ bin bags, eight America’s ‘Most Loved’ dog foods and two to three hundred things that “America Runs On.” In fact, every single product in the States is so great, people’s heads often explode randomly in grocery stores.


There are wonderfully comedic infomercials that claim they can solve all of humanity’s ills if only I pay a few dollars plus shipping. Chuck Norris, the hairy karate chopper, often tells me he can make me look like David Beckham for a few quid. Robert Wagner and the Fonz regularly inform me I need a Reverse Osmosis Mortgage. Several famous older ladies, such as Sally Field, tell me I can have superhuman titanium bones, just by taking a politely-named pill.


At least with the drug commercials, you get a dose of reality. In fact, you get a giant dose of it, as they list side effects into the wee hours of the morning.


I’m off to check out some new scouring pads I heard someone shouting about that apparently can defeat world hunger! Tara!


I Coulda Been A Contender


10 | REVUEWM.COM | JULY 2011


SCHEDULE | DINING | SIGHTS | SOUNDS SCENE


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