Sunday, March 23, 2008

Our Generation!

During the delightful visit of the Barry B. family, Barry B. and I regaled one another with recreations of the lost candy bar commercials of our youth. Don't judge us! It is the nature of our generation. Old candy bar commercials are our campfire stories and we must work to keep them alive. I am put in mind of McNeil's notion of the "living 'blog'" for some reason. I reminded Barry B. of a candy bar called Peanut Butter With No Jelly. In the commercials, Peanut Butter was represented by a man and Jelly by a woman (or it may have been the other way around). In any case, Peanut Butter and Jelly undertook a tearful and irrevocable separation in vaguely tragic circumstances. This struck me as wrongheaded marketing even as a child. First, we were being reminded of how good Peanut Butter is with Jelly. Then we were being told that Jelly would have no part in our candy bar, despite the former fact. Finally, we were asked to associate the eating of the candy bar with despair and heartbreak and unutterable loss. Barry B., in turn, reminded me of a cow and an elephant who would come out and sing about the Butter Nut candy bar. Their song, in Barry B.'s telling, went like this: "It's buttery! Nuttery! Buttery! Nuttery! Buttery! Nuttery! Butter Nut!" When he sang it, I remembered it, though I could not bring to mind the accompanying capers. Says Barry B., the cow advocated for the butteriness while the elephant was more in favor of the nutteriness. At one point, the elephant accidentally said "buttery" instead of "nuttery" and the cow gave him (her?) a kiss of appreciation. The elephant seemed pleased and a fluttery musical cue indicated his (her?) complex emotions. Barry B. says that the cow and elephant were meant to resemble pop duo Sonny & Cher, in his opinion. I could not find either ad on YouTube (hence the importance of our oral tradition), though I was able to find one reference to the Butter Nut candy bar, which I present forthwith for your edification and pleasure: