Schlitz Light Beer - Mi gusto!

Yes, that mangled Spanish was intentional, so calm down, little pedants. I'm pretty sure the proper way to say "I like it" is "Mi gusta". Today's ad from 1962 shows a typical 1960s Adverhonky* guzzling a nice cold Schlitz and all but completely ignoring his perfectly good sandwich.

"Real Gusto in a great light beer". Whatever. Beer that color cannot be described as having "gusto" no matter how badly Schlitz wishes it were true. Just like all advertising, if you repeat it enough, people will believe it.

Meanwhile, he's only had one bite of that ham on whole wheat. What a crime. Is he even going to finish it? Maybe not, because it has that gross kind of lettuce that's floppy and rubbery, like a piece of green flesh. Bleah. The best part of the lettuce leaf is the middle of the leaf, just below the wiggly floppy bit and well above the thick white fibrous bit. Your mileage may vary, depending on how wrong you are about lettuce texture and proper sandwich construction.

So who uses the word "gusto", apart from advertisers or people trying to be quirky or kitchy? Nobody. Throw in "zest", "value", and "zing" and you've got an Advertising Douchebag Starter Kit. No normal person uses these words with sincerity.

"Gusto" comes from the Spanish "to taste" and from Latin "gustus" meaning "a tasting". See also "gustation". Aha! That reminds me of one of my favorite movies O Brother Where Art Thou? John Goodman used the word while picnicking with his son-to-be victims. "Thank you as well for the conversational hiatus. I generally refrain from speech during gustation. There are those who attempt both at the same time. I  find it coarse and vulgar." Moments later, he breaks off a tree branch and lays about the heroes, knocking them cold and robbing them. There's a Blu-Ray worth buying.

Anyway, Schlitz seems a little proud of their advertising heritage. You can see lots of old print ads on their site displayed at a pathetic 404 x 580 resolution. Inexcusable. Right click the one down below to save it at a PAG-standard 2000 px height.

*A "generic or idealized person", usually depicted as being a blue-eyed Caucasian by advertisers intent on ignoring the existence, interests and buying power of all non-white races.

For big, click with gusto.


Steve Miller said...

Seeing as whatever's on the other side of the lettuce in that alleged "sandwich" looks like a piece of pink felt, I'd ignore it for the beer, too. Gusto or no.

BTW, here's a nice selection of Schlitz ads from the days when illustrators walked the Earth (and Schlitz made Milwaukee famous). http://todaysinspiration.blogspot.com/2012/06/more-summer-fun-were-just-here-for-beer.html

PhilAreGo@gmail.com said...

BAH ha ha! "When illustrators walked the Earth". Ain't it the truth. Work historically handled by illustrators is now done by semi-concussed chimps using Photoshop. Photoshop Disasters is a good place to see daily crimes against pixeldom.

Thanks, Steve!


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