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The day is done. Tomorrow is the first day of vacation, which will be taken up entirely by laundry, cleaning the house, and packing.
But wait. I sat in the back of the bus on my route home, zoning out, listening to tunes, avoiding eye contact and ignoring children misbehavior, all while scanning the bus placards.
Now bus placards are a class specific medium - you see the usual, devoted to the stereotypes of bus riders - the cheap and the poor. Tonight there was the Jobdango placard for the un- and underemployed, the change the world placard for the idealistic underemployed just out of college, the don't-be-an-ass-on-the-bus placards in matching English and Spanish, the alternate forms of transportation placards (on the not-in-your-car bus? Try the not-in-your-car train/amtrak, or even try the not-in-your-car car - the Zipcar). All well and good. The Moneytree payday loan placard fit right in.
But what do I spy? I blinked again.
A condo ad. Interesting. But it gets better. Said condo advertises studios and alcoves(?) for 200K, 1BD/1BA for 300K, 2BD/2BA for 400K, and work lofts for 500K. Notice the irony here? When the buyer shows up and signs and initials, signs and initials, and finally is asked "how did you find out about this condo" is anybody going to really say ... bus placard?
I do love the fact that they are brazen about the prices. None of this old "prices start at xxxK" to lure you in before you are horribly trapped at the realtor. Brownie points for that. Just a glam upper class placard proudly slumming with the lower and middle.
The piece de la resistance was: the glam condo was a 1/2 placard. Pulling the punch a bit. I can't imagine that even a full size placard costs all that much. If you are selling a series of 1/2 million dollar anything, along with a larger series of slightly cheaper apartments aren't we talking about 30-40 M worth of construction? Spring for the full size bus placard. You're good for it ... if you sell one.
Its almost as if the glam placard is destined to do exactly the opposite of what advertising supposed to: no one swayed by it could do anything about it or would admit to having seen it, and there is the strong possibility that the developers are sending signals that they will have to drop the price.
semiotics of the bus placard
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