Wednesday, 12 October 2005
Metaphors for the atomic age…
Etymology: Middle English, modification of Old Norse blanda; akin to Old English blandan to mix, Lithuanian blandus impure, cloudy
(from Merriam-Webster Online)
And compare it to that of fuse:
Etymology: Latin fusus, past participle of fundere to pour, melt
(also from Merriam-Webster Online)
I’ll just make an addendum as I find more references…
The new 2006 Ford Fusion, with its matching website, allows visitors to fuse photos while listening to piped-in pop music. The first song, “Reactor” by Detroit’s (now fissioning) band 19 Wheels, enters its chorus with phrases like “don’t wanna’ be shut down, cooled off“, “burning up on the inside” or “I might explode” and the repeated word “reactor“. Once again, a product is being marketed to atomic age youth (specifically Gen-X) through music, art and science. Ford also allow users to “fuse the perfect mix“, with a virtual music mixer right on site.Since a target demographic is comprised of even smaller groups, it is not uncommon to market within these groups. Ford has decided to target the Hispanic sub-group with a metaphor a la español: “chispa“, meaning “spark”. The high-energy theme is extended in Ford’s marketing approach here, as well, with the slogan “Energy that Moves You” and a Spanish version of the online music mixer.Meanwhile, a series of in-theme English commercials peaks with two full-length ads titled “Particles” and “Ignition”. If this product line continues, and expands, I’m sure we can expect to hear about a compact “Nucleus” or a larger “Isotope” any time…
Added: The Ford Fusion starred on the cover of Consumer Reports’ New Car 2007 Preview, released in early November of 2006. While SUV sales are running out of gas, car sales are fueling up, perhaps leading us away from the “vehicle-as-rugged-explorer” metaphors that have been leading the pack (Trailblazer, Expedition, Pathfinder or Safari to name a few). Who knows? Maybe we’re ready for a second life of the wild feline theme, with its Lynxes and Cougars and Bobcats – oh my!
Further to the Fusion is the Gerber® Reactor™ Flashlight. This LED based lightsource is notably whiter and brighter than the classic incandescents, which may give rise to its high-energy name.
Cadbury Dairy Milk Peanut Butter is currently being tracked by the Observatory for its reference to hip-hop and what is believed to be the word remix. This sighting has yet to be confirmed.
Confirmed: Commercial for Cadbury, making a direct visual correlation between music and chocolate with the script “Mmm…new mix! Like Cadbury’s new mix of chocolate and …peanut butter.”
Under watch: Recent freeze on bling-bling and other cool hip-hop paraphrenalia in pro-basketball presages a change in megamarketing, threatening a meteoric end to “re-mix” and its orbiting phat metaphoric bodies.
Old News Travels Eventually: Search engine Google released a new service called “My Google“. Its other name? Google Fusion. It seems that like hi-tech Geppetto Wow Wee, this personalized search page also sees fit to fuse the technology and personality nuclei. Is this part of a trend? We’ll mark this spot in the sky, and see if technology has finally left behind its pocket protectors.
Adding Gillette Fusion Into The Mix: The short-play Gillette Fusion Music Mix promotion streaked by the Observatory undetected at first, then showing up in our records. Like Ford Fusion’s “fuse the perfect mix“, the word mix is given its bounce from the blendiferous concept of fusion. We’re left wondering which metaphor will outlast the other’s popularity. Our guess is that fusion will, but only by a close shave…