A series of television commercials for a beer company attempts to portray in a humorous fashion what the world would be like without beer. A group of men are shown sitting around on a boat after a long, hard day of fishing. They reach into a cooler full of ice, but instead of cold cans of beer they pull out ears of corn and pass them around. They lift up their ears of corn and toast to each other. As the obviously bizarre scene fades out the commercial ends with these words on the screen: "It would be weird without beer." Another ad shows a man, at a moment when we might expect him to offer a beer to his prospective son-in-law, tossing him instead a fish, once more making the point that "it would be weird without beer."
On one level, the commercials are humorous, They are effective in leaving the impression that there are just certain moments when nothing would seem appropriate in place of drinking a beer. On another level, however, they are not amusing at all.
The slogan is tragically ironic. Indeed it would be weird without beer, but in the opposite sense intended by the advertiser.
It would be weird without women with black eyes, bruised faces and broken arms from their drunken husbands. It would be weird without children in need of food and clothing because of fathers who cannot stop themselves from drinking away their whole paychecks. It would be weird without marriages destroyed by addiction to alcohol; without police officers and emergency rooms busy on Friday and Saturday nights dealing with accidents and assaults caused by those under the influence of alcohol; without funerals where parents wail in agony as they bury the lifeless bodies of their precious children killed by another drunk driver. It would be weird to have a world without all of the widows, orphans, and neglected children, without all of the destruction and desperation, without all the misery and ruin caused by the use of alcoholic beverages like beer.
Yes, it's true. It would be weird without beer.
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