Aug 23, 2006
Just like in America!
There is a very common marketing ploy used here by companies who want their product to be instantly successful. I am not sure if it actually works, as I did not speak with any marketing experts about it, but regardless, if you walk down the street you will see many products advertised as "k'mo b'america!" or "Just like in America".
I remember when RC was introduced to Israel. The marketing ploy was, "The cola that turned America on its head!". Having grown up in America I do not remember RC being a major change in culture or tradition. People generally tend to prefer Coke or Pepsi, unless they are looking for a cheaper drink, which would lead them to RC.
Just open your local advertising brochure that gets stuffed in your mailbox on a weekly basis. Flip through it and you will see many products advertised as "Just like in America". People seem to be under the impression that everything American is top quality, and if they tap into that, whether it is true or not, they can dupe the public into buying their product or service.
Why am I talking about this?
I work in Ramat Gan. I usually do not have the good fortune to be able to walk around the neighborhood where I work. I pretty much go from the train to work taking the shortest and quickest path, and back from work to the train. Occassionally I have to take the short walk to our factory and sometimes I go out to buy a falafel or shwarma for lunch.
Another "feature" of this neighborhood, other than its tall office buildings and a hub of business, is the seediness of prostitution at night. Rumor has it that this neighborhood is loaded up with prostitutes at night. Walking around, one can easily find the brothels and strip joints. There is one right across from the factory and some others a bit further down. It is a shockign juxtaposition seeing the classiness of the business activity by day and having that smut within the same area.
Today I had to go to the factory. As I was leaving the factory I got stopped by one of the local Chabad missionaries. He knows me by face, as he gets around alot trying to put tefillin on people. he is the typical Chabad missionary. Nice, friendly and pushy. Anyway, he stops me in my tracks. He tells me he has to run into the building across the street to put tefillin on somebody he had promised. It will just take a couple of minutes.
What did he want from me? He was parked illegaly. He said they are very quick to tow cars and if you even leave the car for a minute you will likely come back and not find it where you left it. He wanted me to watch the car for him for a few minutes. It took me a minute to register what he wanted. The hood of the car was open, as if he was waiting for a mechanic. He promised me again it would just take 3 minutes. All I had to do was sit in the car and he would be right back.
I felt kind of guilty considering he was asking me to do this so he could go put tefillin on somebody who, he said, was waiting for him. I said ok, but really only a few minutes because I do not have time - I have to go back to work. He promised me again and ran off.
As I am sitting there in his hit car, I am wondering what would I do if the cops show up. He did not leave the car keys in so if they tell me to move the car, it would not be pretty. I am sitting there lookign around and right across the street is one of the aforementioned places of ill repute.
Out of boredom and nothing else to do I was reading the sign. Among all the offers and services they provide, one thing struck me. They were advertising their services with the slogan, "Just like in America!".
To be honest, I have never been inside one of these places, neither in the US of A nor in Israel. I have no idea, other than from my wild imagination and having watched too many movies and read too many books, what goes on inside these places. But I am curious what they meant by Just like in America!.
Are American Women of the Night providing service differently than those in Israel? Are they indicating that they use anglo women? Have they trained the Arab, Russian, East Asian and Romanian women who seemingly work for them to somehow act American?
I have no idea what the sign meant. It just seemed wildly out of place.