Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Pop Culture Musings: Antidrug PSAs

Drugs. My drug knowledge comes largely from (where else?) TV. Growing up, we were all assaulted by drug PSAs. What did we learn? To find out, come with me on an anti drug tour of a life time.

Drug users hate being called names. They're sensitive and complex little pirates desperate for approval. Don't explain why you don't want to do pot with logical explanations--a simple putdown will suffice. Calling a grade schooler a "turkey" works--for older kids, I've found that, "weak willed cog of the machine" is great.

Lessons? Mmm, edible brains! Do we get free samples of these?

The "This is your brain" people of the 80s decided that the only thing that could make this message more effective with the kids was to make it sexier. Lessons learned: on the one hand, drugs make you a creepy little elfin pixie who takes out her rage on frying pans with a hysteria Joan Crawford reserved for her wire hangers. But on the other, drugs make you skinny enough to pull off that white tank top and pixie cut even more convincingly than Natalie Imbruglia. I'm torn.

Lesson the first. Dogs are narcs. Lesson the second, if you do drugs, you'll be condescended to by a creature who can't master the toilet. Getting an anti drug lecture from your dog is just slightly less humiliating than getting one from Borat.

If you've been to any experience where drugs are de rigeur (Woodstock, Studio 54, sitting through an M. Night film screening), block up your uterus and stitch your thighs together. No kids for you! On an unrelated note, I kind of hope this, "I learned it from YOU, okay?!" conversation crops up between Dexter and baby Harrison in another fifteen years.

According to one PSA which I unfortunately couldn't find, "Nobody ever says I want to be a junkie when I grow up." Are you sure? I like to think at least a few people had that as a goal. It would make me feel a lot better about the career paths of Keith Richards, Hunter S. Thompson, and the (soon to be) Widow Winehouse.

Lesson? If you do meth, invest in a set of eyebrow merkins. (Spock's Club is having a sale this weekend--everything from the "O RLY?" brow to the inscrutable poker faced brows.) However, the fact that my first reaction to this wasn't, "Drugs're BAD, mmkay" but to reach for my tweezer shows that I probably do need an intervention of a different sort. I never told you guys this, but hi. I'm Sadako, and I'm an eyebrowrexic.

If you do cocaine, you'll only be able to afford the sparkly be-dazzled Express dresses that cover a third of your ass. But your ass will be a third smaller because you won't need to eat so it works out okay. This ad is kind of comforting to me--party hardy coke girls wobble around in four inch heels and pass out in bathrooms. Since I live in ballet flats and with an Adrian Monk-esque fear of public toilets, it could never happen to me.

Heroin users wear sensible shoes, like sneakers, but their hair is stringy and unwashed. And they wear hoodies and take public transportation! Don't chase the dragon, kids. After all, the girl in the cocaine PSA got picked up by a limousine. Hold out for a cool drug.

The lesson? Meth < Heroin < Coke

Also, I'm hungry. Someone pass the scrambled brain, please.