Sunday, December 9, 2007
Good Idea, Bad Source
The other day I was headed toward the Union Square subway station, minding my own business, when a group of folks duded out in vintage attire accosted me and encouraged me to celebrate Repeal Day. The day Prohibition was repealed, they meant, that day being Dec. 5. The men had overcoats and fedoras on and the women lacquered hair and flapper outfits. Some acting stunt, I thought.
Upon quizzing them, they expressed their zeal for their cause, saying Repeal Day should be made a national holiday. But who was behind the movement?, I asked. No one, they said. Just a good cause. For a second, I believed them. A lark, I thought, and not a bad idea. Repeal Day would make for a nicely irreverent holiday.
But then, looking at the button they handed me, I noticed at the bottom in small print was the web address for Dewar's. The whole exhibition was a marketing scheme, one small part of a national campaign. And the well-dressed barkers were just some yahoo actors for hire. OK, fine, good. But say so! Don't pretend you're really into it and Dewar's ain't paying the check.
Now, to find some people who really do want to make Repeal Day a holiday and not just sell a bottle of blended whiskey.