Anti-drug ads are a source of entertainment

    I was watching VH-1’s “”I Love ’80s”” show and they showed this anti-drug public service announcement from 1987.

    You may or may not remember it — it starts off with a father coming into his son’s room with a cigar box full of weed. “”Your mother found this in your closet,”” he said. Apparently in the world of antidrug PSAs, kids don’t own anything but cigar boxes. There’s nothing else in their rooms that could, at any time, hold drugs. The son then starts to give the standard excuse of, “”It’s not mine, it’s this other guy’s.””

    I remember once, in 10th grade, we were hanging out at my friend’s house when his mom came in because apparently we had left an eighth on the kitchen counter. My friend then made up this story about how we were all just hanging out, and then this guy who no one was really friends with came over and apparently forgot his baggie of weed. I believe his name was supposed to be Fred. I left quite quickly after that and my friend got grounded for a month, but the point is that as lame as it sounded, it was the best excuse afforded to us at the time.

    The dad then cuts off the son and says, “”Where did you learn to do this?”” The son doesn’t say anything, and the dad repeats, “”Where did you learn to do this?”” and then the son starts crying and says, “”I learned it from you! I learned it from watching you!””

    All in all, it was very touching. As you started to cry from this amazing display of human relationships, I believe it faded out and said something like, “”Learn to hide your drug use better. Especially if you’re a parent.”” After I saw that and finished humming “”Memories … from the way we were,”” I thought about anti-drug PSAs and how, after all this time, they still suck ass. I mean, who the hell are these people that create these PSAs? I get the feeling that the extent of their research on teenagers and drugs consists of watching that episode of Punky Brewster where she can be in the cool kids club if she does speed and crack.

    There’s another thing I want to know: Where are these people that a) give you free drugs, and b) will only be your friend if you do the free drugs that they give you? All the drug users I know would welcome a straight friend with open arms, because they need someone to drive them to In-N-Out or pick up one of the many varieties of Visine from Earl’s Place.

    And why don’t I know any sixth graders with crack? How do sixth graders buy crack? Do they save up their allowance from third to sixth grade only to use it as leverage to get people to be friends with them?

    The latest trend of anti-drug PSAs are divided into two categories, terrorism and bad judgment. The first one is sort of backfiring in my opinion. It attempts to show a link between terrorism and drug money, and everybody with an IQ over 75 seems to recognize that the link itself is the fact that drugs are illegal.

    The other category, bad judgment, seems to be a series of commercials that whine about the fact that you’re more likely to put out when you’re high. Thank you, Captain Obvious. I think we should address the fact though that most girls at parties that are high are also drunk off their asses.

    Look, you want to make an effective anti-drug PSA? You take a video camera, go downtown and film some of the people I run into on my lunch break. I was walking down Broadway, and this lanky black guy pauses mid-step, runs down a side street and says, “”I just wanted to tell you that you smell good”” to a bunch of girls and then comes back.

    So, of course, I started laughing my ass off. He took my laughter as an invitation to talk to me about his life for the next five minutes. He told me about how he liked martial arts movies but they’re really expensive, especially at liquor stores. It took me a while to figure that much out, and by that time, I decided to turn down a street the opposite direction of my work, so he found someone else to annoy.

    So you just film that guy, or the ones just singing at the top of their lungs in the middle of the intersection, and then you write “”Don’t do drugs.”” Or, if you have a large budget, you can interview Brian Wilson and Anna Nicole Smith at the same time, followed by the same message.

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