Thursday, October 19, 2006

A whiter shade of pale

Several months ago, I requested information about the Queen Mary 2.
This was in response to a request by Argotnaut to find out how, if we were going to move to Europe in 2008, we could get there without flying, so that we wouldn't have to put Buddy in a cargo hold. A's belief is that, if you wouldn't stuff your infant in a breadbox and stow him/her down in the cargo hold where temperatures can fluctuate between freezing and halfway to boiling and Jesus-God-only-knows if there's any light down there, then you shouldn't have to stow your doggy down there, either. Tough to argue with that logic.

As is my custom, I decided to make a game of this could we not only NOT fly, but make the trip really cool. Enter the QM2. It makes the trip from New York to Southampton in six days, and NY to Hamburg, Germany, in eight. The ship has a kennel on board, which is kind of akin to the poshest doggy prison one can imagine, but still better than a 10-hour Auschwitz-like boxcar ride in the hold of a jet aircraft bookended by one's pet carrier being long-tossed by baggage handlers who may or may not be aware that there's a live (and scared poop-less) animal in there!

"There is no reason to be alarmed little dog! It is merely a de-lousing chamber!"

So now I occasionally receive in the mail brochures about the QM2. And they are a riot. Being a recovering marketing puke myself, I can see what Cunard's market analysis has revealed: that everybody traveling aboard the QM2 either ARE Thurston Howell and Lovey from Gilligan's Island, or fancies themselves as much.

You've never seen so many photos of picture-perfect, natty, wealthy Caucasian retirees in your life. Not a person of color to be seen. Even the waitstaff is a bunch of honkies! (Well, there might be a wog in there, but it's hard to tell in the lighting of the photos.)

Now I'm sure that there are wealthy (or, like us, just unwisely profligate fun-seeking) minority types on the boat. But it wouldn't do to indicate such in the brochure.

I'm not making a judgment against Cunard on this score. I just think it's kind of funny. Just wait til the Howells get a load of the Heckmans in their Homestar Runner t-shirts accompanied by their hillbilly dog.
Just one more reason (besides the jettisoning of the despised W. Bush) to look forward to 2008!


Tavia Rowan said...

I'm watching a trial on Court TV right now, set in Massachusetts. When discussing the jury make-up, one of the reporters described the area as "whiter than a Polar Bear in a snowstorm." I guess they're not alone.

Anonymous said...

You do remember that you are a (very) white person ?