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31 December 2007


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OK, so they're advertising the purse or the sweater and purse combo?

Too bad they're not pushing a bathrobe.

Check out this link:


Enter "12/26" into the "find" search tool and click on the photo right below 12/26. See the Maltese in the bathrobe? Now THAT'S a great advertisement. [Oh yes, read Sofia's story......her "guardians are some wonderful people at "Little Dog Rescue" who have done an outstanding job above and beyond the call of duty. Got "Ms. Sally" from them.]


Oh yes, meant to add: I absolutely detest this "pet as accessory" fad. It's disgusting and exploits small animals in a vile way.

Bernard J. (Bernie) Starzewski

What we are talking about is materialism.

Whether its a dog or an I-pod or walking around in public with your own personal hydration device (water bottle) shipped in from a glacier on a volcanic slope from the most remote island on the planet its all about one-upmanship and being trendier than thou.

Im very happy to live in a small town in Wisconsin where all that crap (well mostly)will still get an eyebrow raised.


As a little dog owner, I agree wholeheartedly!


Lis, re your 11:38 AM comment: While I did write "we" when I referred to throwing tomatoes on those wearing furs, I never [not once] ever did such a thing. Can't say I admired the people that did it, either, as I always felt that carefully scripted letters or calls to those who could make a difference made a heftier impact.

However, if I saw someone abusing an animal, there's no telling what I would do.


I prefer the method proposed by George Carlin… “Get a drink before you leave!”

Comment by Bernard J. (Bernie) Starzewski — January 1, 2008 @ 12:13 pm

yeah, well, i prefer not getting stuck on a hot subway without water ;) and not everyone who carries bottled water is buying a bottle every time. i buy a few each spring to carry me through the warm and hot seasons. i refill them with filtered water from home. many people do. i carry 2 bottles spring through fall. one for me, one for my dot ;)

i don't have an ipod, my phone doubles as one. much prefer my Bowie to the subway preachers! lol!~ i don't listen to music when i'm out with the dot though, i need to hear what's going on around me and it interferes with "our time". :)


Hey -- I resent Bernie's "symptoms of herding" remark.

Happy New Year, all!


Comment by Lynn — December 31, 2007 @ 8:31 pm

Prez of the division is the one to write. best to start at the top. ime, these type of directives usually came 'down from above' when it came to change based on customer feedback. a CD who's sensitive to the issue wouldn't be doing it in the first place. you have a 50/50 chance they'll listen to you if their willing to learn. some don't care because their so darn stuck on their 'idea'. you avoid all that when the directive comes down from above :)

you should have seen the look on my last boss's face when he assigned me to Open Season and i told him i would get back to him on that after i checked it out and made sure i was "OK" with it, lol!~

Bernard J. (Bernie) Starzewski

I prefer the method proposed by George Carlin... "Get a drink before you leave!"


It's a great method, if the distance between your two points is not long enough to require something along the way, or the purpose of going out doesn't involve staying out for an extended period.

When I take my dog out in the summer, whatever my purpose in going out with her, and regardless of where we're going, I make sure I have water with me for her.

Don't you do the same?

Christie Keith

I can take a lot, but if anyone gets between me and my iPod it's not pretty.


OK, so when we wanted to make a statement about wearing fur we protested by throwing tomatoes and hauling picket signs.

"We" ?

Lynn,when I wanted to make a statement about wearing fur, I made a statement. I have never had anything but contempt for the people who bravely bullied and assaulted middle-aged to older women wearing fur, rather than fit, strong young to middle-aged men wearing leather.

Bernie, most people use bottled water because it's extremely convenient, and in many cases, secondarily, because we live in places where the water pipes are old, with all that that implies. And they use iPods because, like hundreds of thousands of generations of human beings before them, they love music, and now we have the technology to carry our preferred music with us all the time. No, I don't have an iPod; it's still a little too pricy for the amount of pleasure I think I'd get out of it. But that's me; music is more important to other people.

I don't know anyone dumb enough to believe that anyone else will be impressed by their choice of bottled water brand. I have met a few people who do think that they derive some kind of status from having the latest, coolest iPod--but not many. Maybe people in your area are different, and think other people can be impressed by junk like that?

Bernard J. (Bernie) Starzewski

OK, its a lot worse. But, I think a good New Year's resolution would be to take a look at all the crap we have been programmed to THINK we need to adorn or entertain ourselves and scrape it off.

This year, instead of buying some electricity consuming tread mill to shape yourelf up, go out and rescue some big old mutt who will drag you around the neighborhood. And, if you dont take your I-pod you might actually discover you have neighbors!

Yesterday I took Scout out to the woods for a good long run. He looked like an eggbeater in the snow making his own personal snow storm as he scrambled between the trees. When he got too hot he would stop and roll on his back making little doggie angels in the snow. There was no power consumed. No electronic cacaphony blocking the out beating of his feet and the rustle of the snow or the crunching of my big feet breaking through the crust, only my occasional whistle to let him know where I was and not to go too far. On the way home he curled up against my thigh and layed his head over my leg. We both slept pretty well last night.

Sometimes we need to realize that taking things off can be more fulfilling than pasting them on. Whether its animals as adornment or the latest techno crap or food fad (protien water is my favorite), we need to realize that at one level or another its all the same. If we really appreciated our animals we would learn to emulate them. THEY dont need any of that and would be ecstatic if we paid more attention to them and less to ourselves.


Comment by Bernard J. (Bernie) Starzewski — December 31, 2007 @ 10:22 pm

"The problem may be that in this case we are demoting a living creature to object status so it seems a little worse."

No - demoting a living creature to object status is a LOT worse. This is - after all - *PET* Connection.

Bernard J. (Bernie) Starzewski

Lynn, All of these things are merely objects of status and symptoms of herding. Only the shambles that modern capitalism has become could convince us to pay $2 for a bottle or WATER with NOTHING ELSE IN IT. Never mind that hauling all that water is a waste of fuel contributing to global warming. And putting it in bottles that cannot be remade into new bottles because it is too toxic with less that 1/3 being recycled into anything at all. All the while the geniuses that convinced us of this laugh up their sleeve while they pump the same tap water you can get at home for 1/200th of the cost.

Like little children we see one with one of these precious things and instantly desire it for ourselves. The problem may be that in this case we are demoting a living creature to object status so it seems a little worse. But why do we feel the need to be endlessly entertained and precisely adorned with the latest gaget or creature or skin of a creature? What obsession drives us to have not only a phone we can carry with us for practical use but internet and email and incessant text messaging and ignore the person next to us or that semi in the intersection. And why do we convince ourselves that we "need" these things? Its vanity. Just consumptive vanity.

I think everyone should read "Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy". (Dont bother seeing the movie) In it Doug Adams tells us why all the marketing consultants should be sent to another planet and provides us with a plan to do it.


Maybe Phil Kowalczyk [Pres J. Jill division] is the one to write?

Or better yet, how about Glenn Livingston, who is a guru in the marketing community.



OK, so when we wanted to make a statement about wearing fur we protested by throwing tomatoes and hauling picket signs.

It wouldn't do much good to write the photographers and ask them not to use pets in purses, I suppose, since they are at the mercy of the creative director of the ad campaign.

And that's where I think letters need to be sent: all women's teens apparel companies that advertise in print ads - directly to the Creative Directors on staff, or to the advertising company if the apparel company sources the advertising out.

We should write and tell them that the use of animals in these photographs, though charming, sends the wrong message and exploits the animals.


Bernie, what's your REAL problem with bottled water? And iPods? I use them both and for me and everyone I know it is NOT about trends or one upsmanship. [Where did you get that idea???] It might surprise you to know that some of us appreciate the iPod for the stress relief it gives. And the water for the portability. I particularly like the iPod because when I'm relaxing on the beach and a bunch of teens are around, I don't have to listen to twenty boom boxes.

Christie Keith

Actually, Christie is commenting on "dogs as objects." And don't tell anyone, but I'm a kind of a materialistic girl in a lot of ways -- but not at the expense of dogs.


Ooops! Sorry 'bout that!

{hanging head and shuffling feet . . . . . . . . . . }


i'll admit it. i'm sitting here chuckling to myself. i used to direct these type of shoots. and i had my list of 'No's' at the time, mostly furs and a few other things and non-pet related issues. OY! when i think of what the list might contain these days! "Sorry, I don't 'DO' little dogs in purses. NEXT!"

Christie Keith

LOL .... now, if only more stylists and designers and photographers could see it our way!


No, Bernie. In this *specific* case, what Gina is commenting on is "Dogs as objects" rather than "Dogs as living, feeling beings which should never be treated as objects".



yes, that's the movie. i hadn't heard about it, so knew nothing when i was given the project by name, except my brain said hunting. now i'm not anti- hunting, but am anti some hunting, so i needed to check it out :) i was assured (lol!~) that i wouldn't have a problem with it by a person that didn't know me well and thought i was being over-sensitive. and i personally thought he was a person of questionable integrity in a work respect ;) so i covered my 'personal integrity/values/feelings' rear. :D

R.I.P. Stryker. such a sad death. didn't need to happen. did the guy actually think he would get away?! :( damn.



"Open Season" - the movie, about the bear and the mule? Yes, I can see where he would have wondered why the heck you didn't jump at it. [And I sure do understand wanting to check it out before getting involved.]

Not to hijack this topic, but Stryker, a police dog, was just killed in the line of duty in southern CA.



Boy! Am I confused (tongue in cheek)! I took Christie's post as making a point about how little dogs have become a fashion accessory (a la Paris Hilton) and how awful that they have become (to some) an object like a pair of ear rings instead of living, thinking, feeling creatures that aren't disposable when the fad is over. Materialism and fads in general is a separate issue, IMHO. I think we can all agree that the image of a pet of any kind as a fashion accessory used as a sales gimmick is not acceptable.

Julia Stegall

Does anyone know what breed of dog the JJill dog is?


It looks to me like a Miniature Pinscher with uncropped ears.

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