“Treat her to the perfect Mother's Day cocktail this year…Try a Mother's Kiss mixed drink, made with equal parts . . . strawberry kiwi vodka and lemonade,” a new Liquor Control Board radio ad states. The ad, says the Inky, is part of a $142,000 ad buy, and read—when else?—during Howard Eskin’s radio show on 610 WIP.
We guess those who say the recession is over only need to look at what Mom’s getting in 2010 to treat her depression amongst her tense 5-times-a-year family relationships—'cause you can always afford a therapist when the market picks back up. Maybe next year.
Board spokeswoman Stacey Witalec says the ad “celebrates motherhood” and that its “intention is to enhance an already wonderful celebration”—likely, may we add, by forgetting it ever happened. That's what we call enhancement! Witalec also says the holidays in which the Board most advertises are Mother's Day, Father's Day, Christmas, Hanukkah and Easter. All well-known causes of severe sadness, along with the at least 9.4 percent of Pa. residents who have to call or visit mom as a member of the state's unemployed this year.
Don't get us wrong. We’re all for having a toast with Mom this Sunday, but find it strange that the Liquor Control Board, which has a monopoly on the hard-alcohol market, feels the need to spend this kind of money advertising. Eric Epstein of RockTheCapital.org called the timing of the PR campaign “dangerous and disappointing . . . and sends the wrong signal to teenagers during prom season.” Currently, 56.3 percent of Inquirer respondents think a state agency shouldn’t be promoting vodka as a Mother’s Day gift, according to an online poll.
It is sort of sad. Especially since the government realizes the state many residents are in and has the ability to create new demand. We imagine the next step is to make the official Mother’s Day State Song (that’ll exist, you’ll see) the 1987 punk anthem “Life Sucks” by Screeching Weasel (Chorus: “Life sucks and so do you. Fuck off.”) It just rings in the day.
It’s looking like a banner year for booze in Philly. State lawmakers and the Liquor Control Board (LCB) plan to take a radical step to improve our access to alcohol. But don’t get too excited.