Saturday, May 28, 2011

We want you, we want you, we want you as a new recruit

Scene: A smoke-filled room in Annapolis, Maryland, 1917. A team of admirals are meeting around a desk.

"So, we've finally decided to smash the cursed Hun. We're going to need a lot more men to join the Navy. Any ideas for our recruiting campaign?"

"Well, we could appeal to patriotism, or draw pictures of the Kaiser as a gorilla, but I think the Army already has that covered. We need some kind of angle, something unique."

"Sir, I have an idea."

"Go ahead."



"Yes, sir. Sex. We market the Navy as the sexy service."

"I'm a little confused. Do you mean something like this?"

"What? No! I mean using women in the ads!"

"But Admiral, surely you've noticed that there are no women in the Navy. And our sailors are often required to spend months at sea at a time, with no women for hundreds of miles around."

"So we get kind of a boyish-looking girl and put her in a Navy uniform. Like this."

"You know damned well that the Navy's uniform isn't designed for women."

"So then you just draw pictures of the girl in the uniform, so you don't have to design a uniform just for the model. And make sure you get one of a girl in one of those jumpers with a V-neck."

"I'm quite concerned that this campaign will be a disaster for some of our younger, fresh-faced sailors. We don't want the Navy to become associated with gender ambiguity."

"Look, if anybody asks, we just say that we're promoting how sexy your girlfriend will look when you come home and she borrows your uniform. There's no danger of attracting Oscar Wilde types."

"All right, let's do it. It's not like this display of sexual imagery will carry over into any future wars or anything."