Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid.

Ever felt like the TV is watching YOU? Comedian Gail Forrest looks at today's advertising and is freaked out.

By Gail Forrest

Baby Boomers be afraid, be very afraid. Advertisers are after us and they’re getting too close for comfort. I try as hard as I can to be strong and stay away from the TV, but I am weak and love a good flat screen. I have little will power when it comes to “regularly scheduled programming.”

Sunday morning, I desperately struggled to turn my back on George Stephanopoulos and his giant hair. I walked through my den, head down, thinking only of coffee. “I love coffee, I can’t wait for my morning coffee, I love coffee.”

Who was I kidding? I grabbed the seven clickers it takes to turn on the TV. I had all seven in my hand but couldn’t remember which one turned it on. I thought about throwing them against the wall but, in the nick of time, realized that would be counter-productive. I had a slight fever and mild delirium when George’s face appeared.

If only the morning was filled with my usual yelling and screaming at the talking heads, but it wasn’t. The commercials FREAKED ME OUT. They may as well have called my name.

“Gail, are you irritable because you’re constipated?”

“No, well sometimes, maybe, should I be? I eat prunes. I recently bought the Metamucil you suggested last Sunday.”

“Gail, are you sleepless? Do you toss and turn and rip the covers to shreds?”

“Ok, yes, yes, a thousand times, yes! I can’t sleep, I haven’t slept in a week. I’m exhausted. I’m desperate and tired. What do I need…tell me, tell me!”

“Gail, would you like flatter abs?”

“Oh God, they can see my abs!…I sucked in my stomach and spat out my coffee. I hit the floor and did 50 sit-ups to no avail. “I need flatter abs. You’re right! Help!”

The ads never stopped: it was my hearing, bladder control, eyesight, falling and last-but-not-least cute new pull-up diapers. 

I no longer cared about George, his hair, or political opinion. I hated his scary advertisers. I turned off the TV, threw the clickers on the floor, and went back to bed.


Gail Forrest recently started doing standup which she finds is a complete blast. Gonepausal is her blog, and she has a book on Amazon by the same name filled with stories of her skewed, funny view on midlife and all its attendant surprises. Humor is the only way forward at this point.  

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The ideas expressed here are solely the opinions of the author and are not researched or verified by AGEIST LLC, or anyone associated with AGEIST LLC. This material should not be construed as medical advice or recommendation, it is for informational use only. We encourage all readers to discuss with your qualified practitioners the relevance of the application of any of these ideas to your life. The recommendations contained herein are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. You should always consult your physician or other qualified health provider before starting any new treatment or stopping any treatment that has been prescribed for you by your physician or other qualified health provider. Please call your doctor or 911 immediately if you think you may have a medical or psychiatric emergency.

Gail Forresthttp://www.gailforrest.com
Gail Forrest is a comedy writer and stand up comic. She studied at Second City in Chicago and has performed at Pretty Funny Women and Flappers in LA, as well as Second City to name a few. She has a published book Gonepausal on Amazon about women in midlife and is working on a new book which includes men and promises to be just as funny with even more insights on aging.


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