Rome Travel Guide

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Saturday, April 21, 2012

Good Buy Roma, and Samsung's Smiling Woman

It's sad to leave Rome, and sadder still when the Fiumicino airport tries to suck up your last Euro with its tacky "Good Buy Roma" campaign, hoping you'll pick up one of those cute Vespa bags in a last frenzy of "Roman Holiday" sentiment. 

Although we have been known to succumb to mawkish sentiment at some point in the sequence of departure, we are not into cute Vespa bags.  But we were entertained, this time, by a wall-sized, waiting-room ad featuring a smiling, sudsed-up woman, freed by her amazing Samsung washing machine to engage in  bubble-bath flirtation with her boyfriend.  It is true that Italian washing machines take so long to do their work that a young couple could do almost anything--attend a play or picnic in the Alban Hills--before the laundry was ready to hang.  "Your Freedom: Our Best Innovation," reads the text, a mildly feminist theme hearkening back to the 1970s and the Virginia Slims campaign. 

The over-smiling woman has been a feature of advertising for decades, leaving analysts of ad fare to explore the shadowy world between pleasure (the smile) and pain (the over-smile, reaching into the space of horror).  All those teeth and gums. 

Then this Asian gentleman showed up and did his tai-chi routine right there, with that smile as backdrop.  You never know.

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