A couple of weeks back, after a wonderful dinner at Corbett’s here in Louisville, we retired to the back patio where they were featuring the original movie version of The Wizard of Oz.
In my pre-DVD, pre-VCR, pre-Cable, 3-station childhood, watching TWoO was an annual event. Like Christmas (without the presents) or Easter (without the chocolate bunny). Kids (and parents) actually “planned” around its annual airing, so as to not miss a minute.
So when the time came (about 18 minutes in) for what USED to be a network commercial break…I felt a real void. No kidding. It actually felt weird not the have that breather at precisely the same spot as it had ALWAYS been during my childhood viewing days. As if something was missing…seriously, meaningfully lacking.
It’s a remnant of a bygone day. I understand that. Today we avoid interruptions artfully. We pay for DVD’s, premium channels and DVR’s that zap right past any messages that find their way into programming. We don’t want to be bothered with messages unless we ask for them. That’s the beauty of the web and information-marketing.
But still there’s something quaint, and maybe a little bittersweet, about the indelible mark left vacant where commercials used to be.
With few exceptions, companies today depend on their website as their initial, and often only, point of contact with their customers. Even businesses like restaurants that rely