Tag Archives: shopping

Retailers amping up social media marketing for Black Friday

Retailers are looking to get a taste of social media love. With Black Friday around the corner, companies in the retail sector are planning major campaigns through social networking sites like Facebook to access wider markets and drive more sales. Some, such as Sears, JCPenney, Starbucks and Target, among others, are actually letting customers shop via Facebook itself, rather than use only it as a tool for routing traffic. The retailers know they need a new angle for winning more business, and social media appears to be the answer.

I wanted to pull the video from an MSNBC story into this post, but WordPress and MSNBC don’t seem to be willing to show me any combined love. So, click here to check it out. And, click here to read my BloggingStocks article on social media and retailers.

Sexy, Hungry and the True Believer

I saw some cool graffiti in my neighborhood today. There’s some new retail joint going into the buildingon the northwest corner of W 71st St and Columbus Ave. It used to be a Penang (restaurant), but the restaurant moved around the corner to W 72nd St between Columbus and Amsterdam. But, that’s not really the point here. The point is that I saw some interesting graffiti.

As you know, I am fascinated with graffiti. I don’t like it as art. In fact, I think “graffiti art” is bullshit. But, I like graffiti that makes you think. I won’t bore you with all this again, so if you haven’t read my other piece on this, check out this post first.

Well, on the corner of W 71st and Columbus, some disgruntled wanderer defaced the advertisement that is supposed to keep you satisfied until you actually get to shop at the store that is coming in. While this stuff is mean-spirited, truly, it also does make you think. The sheer brutality of the “commentary” was enough to stop me in my tracks. Then, when I thought about it, I realized that I had to do some blogging.

Let me tell you about Sexy, Hungry and the True Believer.

Sexy really is. You take a look at the thigh on which the label is written, and it doesn’t take much to see that she lives up to it. Her face being marred is probably an attempt to counteract her apparent sexiness, a rejection of her implict claim (made explicit by the tagger).

“I’m so sexy,” now comes across as conceited and damaged, thanks to the work of an angry person who probably doesn’t live in my neighborhood. After all, we’re all nice people here.

But, it would be a shame simply to focus all my efforts on Sexy. You know, Hungry deserves some attention, too. Her story even has a bit of depth to it, which I bet surprises the shit out of you.

It’s hard to see in this picture, but a crude word bubble is coming from blondie’s mouth, “I’m so hungry.” Hell, I bet she is. I’d be hungry all the time, too, if I had to live like she does. I’m much happier eatng than not, so I’ll never be able to understand Hungry’s lifestyle.

 As I mentioned, Hungry has some depth. “Look” is written right across her chest. Normally, I would be happy to do so, but without the lettering, there is no reason to turn your gaze there. Hey, the chick doesn’t eat. She’s a fucking model. That means she has no body fat, and her chest reflects this reality. Nonetheless, she’s tagged as a sex object, and the word “Look” drives the point home. You are participating in objectification, and it’s all the tagger’s fault!

And, finally, we get to the True Believer.

She has “Love” tattooed across her forehead and a longing look on her face. She doesn’t reveal much of her body and is at the bottom of the image.

How did she get off so easy?

I guess the tagger couldn’t fit “Desperate” or “Lonely” across her face. Or, maybe there’s some latent optimism fighting to get out. Either way, this chick got lucky compared to the others.

There’s some guy in the picture (which you can see back at the top of the article). I don’t know why he didn’t get any abuse. Maybe, it’s because he’s a retard or simply is not important because everyone’s looking at the ladies. I don’t know if that’s true, but it sure makes sense to me.

Montreal goes underground

In the winter, nobody walks the streets in Montreal; it’s too damned cold. So, the city has developed a vast network of underground tunnels that connect many of the city’s hotels, restaurants, retailers and other business establishments. The underground network is pretty spectacular in the summer, too, since the whole thing has some great air conditioning.

You can find an entrance to the underground city by looking at Metro (subway) signs. If it has the letters “RESO,” the station also serves as an entrance to the underground city. Once underground, you can choose to take the subway or explore the underground city on foot.

The underground system is pretty amazing. There are plenty of retail and dining options. The network goes several stories below ground and reaches above the surface. Also, it was designed to allow as much natural light as possible. I was definitely impressed.

I thought I’d cause some trouble with my host, telling him that this subway station design is a knock-off of the Paris metro. Instead, he just laughed and explained that this particular work was a gift to Montreal from Paris. So, he put me in my place easily. I may think before speaking next time, but as I explained to him, I doubt it.

The subway system provides great access to the city. In fairness, it’s not quite New York, Washington, DC or Seoul, but it certainly is at least a step up from Boston or Helsinki. I’ve heard great things about it. I wanted to give it a try, but when faced with the opportunity, I had to choose the streets. That’s where I prefer to be when I’m working on a story.