Faking it

There’s no twerking
in this commercial
by the fish
by the cakes
by the light bulbs.

It’s the new Walmart
they’re selling now:
the squeeze cheese glows
Chernobyl yellow, stocked by
a simulated employee
who talks about paid for education
and energy conservation.

I’m not a real associate,
but I play one on TV.

Let’s speak about greenness,
as if a few solar panels
make up for the corn
shipped from three states over
when it’s in season here,
but it’s the new Walmart

pushing choice cut steak
at fake barbecues, and produce
with UPC labels peeled off
sold farmer’s-market style,

while people who are not
bankers, doctors, or lawyers
play them for 30 seconds,
wheeling carts full of groceries
through shiny aisles, the final step
in dollarstorification of this nation
that used to make most of what it sold.

I’d rather hear the twerker’s ass
slap her thighs than these mouths
flapping, clapping air in paid-for emptiness.

About Susan L Daniels

I am a firm believer that politics are personal, that faith is expressed through action, and that life is something that must be loved and lived authentically--or why bother with any of it?
This entry was posted in New Free Verse and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

37 Responses to Faking it

  1. claudia says:

    Chernobyl yellow….yikes… so true susan… sometimes you wonder if they think their customers are stupid….ugh…. well penned

  2. annotating60 says:

    My, my, my-wouldn’t want to be them with you gunning for me.Go git Em’ >KB

    • Hee, hee. Thanks, KB. I have nothing against them but those commercials, which are trying to make them into something they are not. I’ll take the twerker any day.

  3. Trent Lewin says:

    Jesus. I agree with comment above, the Chernobyl yellow line is priceless, as is the word “dollarstorification”. Funny thing about trucking food from far distances. In a life cycle assessment on the topic, the net sustainability hit presented by transporting the food is nothing compared to the way energy is used to produce the food – it’s a drop in the bucket, which renders the arguments about hundred mile diets meaningless. More focus should be placed on the production cycle.

    I’m with you on the empty vapidness of selling food in the modern age. Someone must like that stuff, though, cause they keep spewing it out. Great poem, and rightly angry. I love your anger.

    • Ah, thank you, Trent. Yep, saw “The New Walmart” commercial one too many times this morning. I agree there’s no way to reduce the carbon footprint of a tomato getting to the store in any significant way, but the idea that they are selling their stuff as fresh/local nauseates me–as does the idea that Walmart employees are “moving up” and people who can afford to will shop there instead of elsewhere. Since when did this giant care about its image? Since never, until this May. Sigh.

      • Trent Lewin says:

        Yeah they don’t care. We do some work with them, they are the ultimate corporate no-face uncaring entity. It’s unfortunately what makes them so successful.

        • Unfortunately, it has made them very successful. No matter what, people need to eat, and what they sell is cheap. People need clothes, and their clothing is also cheap. We are going to cheap ourselves into moral bankruptcy with they way we treat each other and the planet to feed and clothe ourselves, but what else is new?

          • Trent Lewin says:

            There are many many worse things than what they are doing. They are filling a need and they are very hypocritical about what they stand for and how they portray themselves, but they are essentially a product of the system. They are retailers. It’s the production system upstream that is essentially corrupt and putting us on a very bad path. Walmart sells a bad product but they didn’t make it. Sure they sell an image that doesn’t exist but most of us do. As usual, no easy answers.

            • Too true, Trent. I can’t blame the seller for the shitiness of what they are selling. Am more than anything disgusted by the three-commercial makeover attempt. Heh. As I said above, the squeeze cheese is probably the most honest thing about what it is in this poem–with the exception maybe of the twerker.

  4. tjtherien says:

    quite the image… “squeeze cheese glows Chernobyl yellow…” makes me wonder what we are eating… the rest is good also but this line is exceptional

    • Thank you so much! I think the squeeze cheese is probably one of the best things to talk about, as it is so unashamedly fake and outside of nature. At least it owns up to what it is. Will I eat it? Ever? Nope. But you have to respect the honesty of its fakeness 😉

  5. Rhonda says:

    So effin’ true. I’ve NEVER been in a WalMart that indicated they were even remotely related to the commercials. But then again, the same can be said about most of them. Love the smolder here…there’s a fire underneath tho, I can feel it!

    • Thanks. Found something REALLY gross this morning in my attempt to see all the Walmart commercials today on You-Tube called “Twerking at Walmart.” Heh. Ended up being my opening and close.

      I might not agree with their business practices or their human resources. I might question the quality of what they sell. Do I still shop there? Yes. Sometimes. My main source of anger here is how they are trying to change their image with a few trite commercials, as if, in the end, an ambitious young employee, a few fake doctors, and some prettied-up produce can change their image.

  6. why don’t you just tell us how you really feel LOL

  7. Holy! wow!!!

    I’m sensing a flarf/free verse poetry style.
    This is fucken incredible. bravo! 2 thumbs way up!

    I like how you’ve combined Wal-Mart/doctors and lawyers in what corporate ladder is doing to our economy. 🙂

    If you get a chance check out my new blog I just posted…I will be posting another one tomorrow. 🙂

  8. mobius faith says:

    I had to look up “twerker”. Hmmmmmm – that’s all I got. Seems like yet another good reason to stay far away from Walmart.

  9. Alice Keys says:

    In France, McDonald’s promots itself as being involved in the French national agricultural movement, using 100% renewable energy in the restaurants (nuclear plant-based electricity?) and all high quality French wheat and potatoes. There’s no mention of where the meat comes from or how it’s produced.

    It’s what’s NOT said that one has to pay close attention to. Thanks for the poetic review of the ad.

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