Thursday, December 13, 2007

A Mad Shoeshiner Moment

I ran “shoeshiner” through YouTube today, and came across this bizarre commercial. No detail on it, no country of origin indicated, but it looks like there are a whole series of “Kiwi Express” commercials featuring these strange little stick figure cartoons. The Boss’ reaction in this one captures my first reaction, as well. A little on-line research led me to, which informs us that this little gem came from Hong Kong, and that:

A SHOE SHINER is urban slang for a brown-noser. Since Kiwi Express is a ridiculously fast shoe shiner, this humorous campaign shows a brown-nosing employee shamelessly sucks up to his boss – in no time whatsoever.

Clearly not American urban slang. Great. Now I’m going to be insecure about the title of my blog every time I see some random foreigner on sitemeter. For the record, there is a real Mad Shoeshiner. He used to work in the lobby of La Fonda Hotel in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Perhaps he still does. He shined my shoes once many years ago and was clearly insane. He did, however, drop several pearls of wisdom that stuck with me to this very day, and I still quote the guy on occasion. Among his observations:
You buy an electric toothbrush and then you have to buy a house that has electricity.
Think about that one for a while. There was a definite method to his madness. As an aside, if you ever get shoe polish on your clothes or upholstery, your first order of business should be a spray-down with WD-40.

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