I never fancy myself someone easily swayed by advertising. I don’t fall for the star studded commercials hocking everything from roofie scented body sprays to queso fresco. Fashion magazines clearly leave no impression as I sit here unmatched and unmade up. I’ve never needed the trendy toy or latest cleaning products. That all changed one Sunday afternoon.
It was typical football Sunday with a chill in the air, my friends were here watching the game when one time out commercial changed everything. The screen changed from a bright green AstroTurf to the steel blue of a nighttime sky with Matthew McConaughey driving a Champagne colored SUV across a bridge and into who knows where. Those city lights are unique but ordinary and mesmerizing. I stopped. Everything stopped. I was there, transported into some strange advertizing oblivion. Then it began, the muttered ramblings of a man searching. Searching for everything and at the same time nothing. A man unafraid to answer a question unasked with an answer that answers no question. A man selling a car that I could never rationalize buying yet now I want.
“Sometimes you’ve got to to go back to actually move forward. And I don’t mean going back to reminisce or chase ghosts. I mean go back to see where you came from, where you’ve been, how you got here, see where you’re going. I know there are those that say you can’t go back. Yes you can. You just have to look in the right place.”
I’ve seen this commercial and it’s various renditions many times now and each time it is the same, the world stops and I’m drawn into this ruse. I’ve tried to figure out why I am completely taken in by this. Is it Matthew McConaughey? Do I think that if I had that car I could be like Matthew McConaughey? Have Matthew McConaughey? That’s unlikely. And the dialogue he’s muttering is intriguing yes, but I already know sometimes you have to go back to move forward. Is it the car itself? Probably not since cars don’t really interest me. I’m very practical when it comes to cars and a luxury SUV is the opposite of practical for me. So it’s not a hot man drawing me in nor is it some slick advertizing copy nor is it the product itself.
I am drawn to this because of the message I get from the man, the script and the car combined. He’s in great shape, he’s self aware and he drives an elegant yet understated, expensive car. That trifecta is the draw. This guy has his shit together. Sure he’s a and self proclaimed bongo playing pot smoker, but he’s got it together or at least he’s got it together for the 102 seconds that I peak into his soul once or twice a week if I’m lucky.
“It’s not about hugging trees. It’s not about being wasteful either. You just gotta find that balance where taking care of yourself takes care of more than just yourself. That’s the sweet spot.“
Well done Lincoln, well done. You found my sweet spot.