Tasteless commercial takes the burrito

Drumming up custom has never been an easy proposition. Especially when the vendor is trying to convince potential customers they ought to change their tastes and eating habits.

There are basically two ways of doing it: one is tasteful, the other tasteless.

Mucho Burrito has chosen the latter.

Under the slogan “Liberate your taste buds,” Muchoburrito opens its latest television commercial to the solemn sounds of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s Requiem Mass.

A strange choice of music: Requiem is music played at funerals and on similar occasions. Definitely not at parties where guests feed themselves to bursting with all kinds of exotic meals.

Besides, Mozart started writing the Requiem Mass in 1791. Franz Xaver Süssmayr finished the work in the beginning of 1792, after Mozart’s death Dec. 5, 1791.

But the choice of opening images is even stranger. A sandwich flies, in slow motion, into a garbage can, to join scraps of a banana and other such stuff, strewn along the bottom of the can.

It is not known whether either of the two Austrian composers was even aware of the existence of bananas.

An upbeat invitation to liberate your taste buds follows.

Considering Mucho Burrito resides in Richmond Hill, Ontario, about half of an hour by car from Toronto and its Maple Leafs, this borders on crazy. The hockey club found out recently how much of unused food is thrown out after each and every home game. The management decided (together with the other Scotiabank Arena tenant, basketball’s Toronto Raptors) to collect the unused food for distribution to the numerous food banks in and around Toronto.

An e-mail went to the Mucho Burrito head office, mentioning the reason and asking:

  • Are those responsible at Mucho Burrito aware of the Toronto Maple Leafs’ efforts to help those less fortunate by sharing the unused food?
  • And, for the record: has anyone at Mucho Burrito ever heard about sentiments such as “bread is God’s gift” (with a remark that they can feel free to think of any God of their choice, or of humanity, if they are atheists)?
  • And, again for the record: has anyone ever mentioned the word “respect” in their presence?

The e-mail concluded with the request to please reply by week’s end (August 23, that is). A week after sending the questions, no reply has been forthcoming.

No answer is an answer, too.

Are we good or are we good?

Mucho Burrito makes all kinds of claims: its foods are always fresh, prepared always new at all times, no artificial colours and sundry modern stuff, just good old homemade Mexican food, tasty and whatnot.

Their web site (muchoburrito.com) makes all these things abundantly clear, adding all kinds of sundry recipes, inviting others to join them by getting franchises, looking as active as a band of eager beavers building a brand new dam.

Besides, Mucho Burrito makes all kinds of politically correct noises on its web site, including explaining its cause: help for the telephone line set up to help young people in mental or emotional trouble (kidshelpphone.ca). The only problem: the web site says Mucho Burrito’s plan is to raise a certain amount of money ($50,000, to be specific) within a given period of time. That period has ended with the end of last year’s November. One would have expected they would have the web site updated with the results of the campaign and, perhaps, with an announcement of a new cause.

But that seems to be asking too much of them.

And, as an aside, announcing one’s generosity and charitable donations looks and sounds like a plain advertising gimmick. Look how good we are, join us and become as good. Come to think of it, it IS an advertising (or public relations, if you wish to call it this) gimmick. Real charity should be anonymous.

Which brings us back full circle to the Mucho Burrito television commercial. The message it conveys contradicts directly the lofty and self-aggrandizing statements Mucho Burrito are making about themselves. Mildly put: it teaches waste.

Of course, as the good old saying goes, nobody can praise me like I can praise myself. Nobody can be as sincere and as thorough. Only I know how difficult the path has been before I could achieve the level of success that I am now so gratefully and gracefully accepting (and enjoying so nicely).

In any case, even if Mucho Burrito was as nice a company as it claims to be, they would look and sound even better if they pulled that moronic commercial off the air.

No need to issue any apologies: everybody and their dog seem to be apologizing for something these days. Just change your ways, just try to start thinking before you attempt doing anything, not after.

You won’t believe the relief!

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