This post falls in the “things that piss me off” category so it will take the form of a RANT.
Those of you who follow me on Twitter may have already caught one or two tweets over the months about this but, with Christmas approaching, it is getting extra annoying. It all boils down to this:
Every time a movie/pop/any other kind of star invades my toddler-hand print-stained TV, I talk to said celebrity, which in turn means that I often talk to myself (don’t you?). It annoys the hell out of me every time the likes of Penélope Cruz, Reese Witherspoon, Julia Roberts, etc. advertise perfume and beauty products and, what do I say to the TV? Well, I say this: I do hope you gave that pay cheque to charity!
And now Brad Pitt and the myth that is Chanel Nº5. I was so hoping it was all a mistake, that he would turn round and tell us all: any money I have made from this series of ads has gone directly to support such and such charities.
Seriously, these people have plenty of money in the bank already (and if they don’t: wow, you’re bad with money), some of them I actually think quite admire (this includes the likes of Julia Roberts and Salma Hayek) but then they go and let me (yes me personally, and you) down.
However, today I saw a glimmer of hope in the horizon courtesy of Waitrose’s announcement. Now, I’ve been a bit mad at John Lewis lately but I do like popping into Waitrose now that we live in a town where I can walk to one.
Today Waitrose announced that their Christmas TV ad will feature Delia Smith, Heston Blumenthal, one of their perspex boxes where clients place their green tokens and a very plain backdrop. This is because instead of investing huge amounts of money in shooting a lavish Christmas ad with all the trimmings, Delia and Heston are going to explain to us that the money is going to go to good causes:
Waitrose has decided to donate the money saved as an additional £1m to good causes through its Community Matters ‘green token’ scheme. This is on top of the £600,000 it would normally donate to local good causes through the initiative during November and December (source: Waitrose, here).
Now, if the channels where they place these ads could just give some of the money Waitrose pays for that space (30 seconds, it’s not even extra long) to charity. Or ask Waitrose to do it. Perhaps to soup kitchens round the country to make sure every single person in the UK gets a hot meal this Christmas Day and, if there’s enough, to make sure those people have somewhere to sleep (that failing, make sure they do have a box of leftover food on that famous British Boxing Day). Perhaps then my faith in humankind will begin to be restored…
Now, Brad, seriously? Poor Coco is rolling in her grave, let her rest in peace. It is the season to be jolly after all.