The Frontstretch: No more ‘livin’ large Bob’ and couples in the bathtub? by Cheryl Walker -- Tuesday March 22, 2005

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No more ‘livin’ large Bob’ and couples in the bathtub?

Cheryl Walker · Tuesday March 22, 2005

 

When my son, Joshua, was very young I would read to him to help get him settled into bed at night. From Bible stories to Aesop’s Fables to Dr. Seuss, we read them all.

One fun little story involved a young man named, Foolish Jack. This poor lad spent most of the story getting into a lot of trouble with his mother, due to his inappropriate choices about how to carry certain items home that the had purchased for her. He would make his transport choices based not on what would be logical, but what didn’t work right the last time. Needless to say he’d end up in trouble again every time, and children hearing his story would get a little lesson in common sense.

As an alleged grown-up, I can report that I, too, have been much like Foolish Jack, and made decisions based on what didn’t work right the last time, and not common sense.

Thank goodness that, as a NASCAR fan, I have big business, advertising companies, and the NASCAR organization itself looking out for me. They all bring me awareness of and responsible knowledge about a wide array of consumer products, from Butt Paste to hard liquor. I really appreciate that.

If you recall, though, NASCAR was in a tough position not too long ago. They had beer as sponsors, but not hard liquor. As the need for sponsors has increased dramatically, and nitpickers from all over kept asking questions like how there could be Budweiser, and the sponsor for one of their series, Busch, and not the likes of Jack Daniels, NASCAR finally had to admit that this position might be a tad inconsistent, said ‘uncle’, and let the hard liquor sponsorships begin. To save a little face, however, they made a lot of noise about how this would give them and these particular sponsors the opportunity to educate us all about the wisdom of responsible drinking. I don’t know if this will really ever keep a college kid from cutting back on his tequila during spring break, but I am all for trying.

Yet once again I see that a problem has cropped up that will likely cause some heartburn for NASCAR and one of its sponsors. I read a blurb on the internet the other day that a legislator is planning to introduce a bill that would limit the ‘male enhancement’ pill producers to showing their commercials between the hours of 10:00 pm and 6:00 am.

Imagine how this news was received by NASCAR, and the Viagra team? It makes it even more interesting, now that Mark Martin has found his way into the top ten so often, and is on-camera so much. A powerful sponsor with a very popular product, and they can’t even show their commercials during a race? Why, doesn’t this have some eerie comparisons to the days of cigarette sponsors?

At least when the liquor sponsors were permitted in, NASCAR had its ‘well-we’ll-teach-you-responsible-drinking’ stance to fall back on. This obviously wouldn’t work well with the erectile dysfunction products, though. No matter what stance NASCAR would fall back in to support these particular sponsors, I can see mainstream America having hissy-fits of all sorts.

I guess it’s a good thing that these sponsors were already involved in NASCAR before America’s legislators impose their regulations on them about their commercials. Now NASCAR may not have to take any position, except for business-like sympathy.

How all of this will ever play out when the feminine hygiene products want in, one can only wonder. We can only hope that common sense will prevail.

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BB6
03/23/2005 03:02 AM
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Cheryl, did you really just say “Nascar” and “common sense” in the same article??? ;) LOL

Yeah, I’ve been wondering about that, too…but since Mark is retiring at the end of the year, it’s kind of moot for him; I bet Pfizer pulls the viagra sponsorship…will they leave Roush completely?? Only time will tell!
wdossel
03/23/2005 05:28 AM
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Cheryl:

Moot point for Pfizer at season’s end—coincides with the patent expiration on Viagra and hence, the driving reason for advertising. Also believe the pharmaceuticals in general are going to be severely clamped down on following the whole Vioxx/Celebrex/Bextra deal. Final point here is that Viagra/Cialis/
Levitra are legit medications and not the patent medicine Enzyte is.

As for sponsorship for the 6, I am sure it will (a) follow the 99’s business model and (b) really be dependant on who goes to the 6 ride. Here’s one scenario—P&G comes onbd with Roush if Ricky Craven goes to the 6 car next year (P&G really like Ricky)...

– Will
M. B. Voelker
03/23/2005 07:47 AM
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Having had to explain to a young girl, now 11, that she absolutely could not have a t-shirt with her favorite driver’s sponsor on it and having had to evade the questions from said girl about what Viagra is I could welcome ad restrictions. But not as much as my 13yo son who does know what erectile dysfunction means and who hides in embarassment when those commercials come on.

There is such a thing as discretion.
Jggirl2448
03/26/2005 01:37 PM
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I am all for limitations of these commercials, or something more blasse when it comes to wording. I have noticed some commercials saying “ED” instead of Erectile Dysfunction. As for 4 hour erection warnings, your doc should tell you that anyways.

Also, another option is to have the name of the maker on ads instead of the pill itself. Pfizer instead of Viagra.

 

Cheryl is no longer a contributor to the Frotnstretch, having branched out on her own, starting CawsnJaws with her son Josh. If you'd like to see more of Cheryl's Frontstretch articles, check out her bio and archive page.