Advertising gone wrong

Roberto Gotta criticizes Mondiale marketing:

For a number of years, Del Piero has been the public face of a brand of mineral water Uliveto, also the official supplier to the azzurri. The script writers were probably overfatigued when they wrote the storyline. In a variety of situations and locations, Del Piero has been extolling the virtues of said water to a… bird. The little critter flies into the dining room while Del Piero is having lunch and, once safely perched atop a chair’s back, has a short conversation with him in a falsetto voice.

In another sequence, a flight attendant brings Del Piero a glass of water but the Juve player kindly turns it down, saying that he’s already got his own bottle, all the while trying to keep from her the fact he’s also talking to the little bird, concealed under a folded newspaper.

Unfortunately, this series, which in itself helps project as clean an image of Del Piero as of the mineral water, became a nightmare as soon as opposing fans and common people got hold of it. While ‘bird’ may have a regular meaning in the British Isles but also a second, less noble one, its Italian equivalent also takes on the meaning of, er, a lower part of the male body which is usually well hidden in underwear.

No sweeping sociological assertion, I just thought this was funny. I also found the following to be interesting, considering the way that parochial Americans believe fascism to be nothing more than a Bad Word to try and pin on members of the other faction:

Lazio striker Paolo Di Canio is to appeal against a ban and a fine imposed following a recent straight-arm salute, claiming that while the gesture is fascist it not of a racist character.

‘I am a fascist, not a racist,’ Di Canio told the Italian news agency ANSA on Friday. ‘I give the straight arm salute because it is a salute from a ‘camerata’ to ‘camerati’. The salute is aimed at my people. With the straight arm I don’t want to incite violence and certainly not racial hatred,’ he said.

From comrade to comrades… sounds very “right-wing”, doesn’t it. No doubt as a member of the “far-right”, Comrade Paolo is big on decentralization, outlawing public education and no income taxes.