Bagel and a Pap Schmear?!!

CBS Cares went out on a limb tonight and aired this Public Service Announcement promoting cancer screening. What could be bad about that, you ask? Well watch for yourself and tell me what you think. (sorry, CBS is not playing nicely with WordPress so I can’t embed). If you’re not inclined to watch the video or are reading on a Blackberry, here is the script:

Want to do something special for your woman this Hannukah? Schedule her a pap smear. Just a schmear could save her life. Light up her menorah with a gift that says, you look great but it’s what’s inside that counts.

Yeh, well, alrighty then. I am guessing this is not airing nationally. ‘Um, darlin’, what’s a schmear?’

Folks, anyone else grossed out with the cream cheese reference. I might never put my feet in those stirrups again without craving a bagel and lox.

I am not sure on what level this is more offensive, the lack of respect for screening or the bizarre Jewish twist. Perhaps they should have used Woody Allen as the talking head. I simply love the way they targeted the Jewish market by talking about food, gift giving and the way they look. Yeh, we are a pretty shallow tribe. Jeez!!

I don’t even know where to start with this one. Who wrote this, Adam Sandler? ‘Grab your harmonica, let’s celebrate Hannukah’. I was thinking a soundtrack of Jim Morrison singing Come on Baby Light My Menorah would have been a nice touch.

I first heard about this on Facebook (thanks Amy K), and the 17 comments in an hour should give you an idea of how it was received. My favorite was the woman who said ‘this is brilliant, those secular pap smear PSAs NEVER work’. Most of us thought it was a goof. I mean, who would actually air this?  During 60 minutes no less.

If you read the backgrounder on the campaign below the video it gets worse. There is talk of overhearing a conversation at Il Mulino (I am sure they will be thrilled with the press – great food BTW, you know how we Jews love good italian) where women were talking about ‘refrigerated speculums’ causing them to not want to go for pap smears but he thought they said ‘spatulas’. (Huh? What was the point of all that)  Oh right, most woman forego a pap smear to avoid cold metal objects. I mean mammos are so comfortable – we go for those, no problem. And surely singling me out as a Jewish woman with some silly references to my food and holidays will make me run to the gyn to make sure I am screened.

Right, if I was an idiot!

Don’t get me wrong, anything that gets women out for screening is a great in my book. But seriously folks, this is a fail of Motrin Moms proportion in my book.

Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at 50-Something Moms Blog. For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone.

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Filed under absurdities, health, women

13 responses to “Bagel and a Pap Schmear?!!

  1. Paula

    Paul and I just looked at each other and said Huh? I thought it was a SNL skit, and a bad one at that.

  2. Wow. I think this is worse than the motrin moms. Would they do something like this targeted towards a specific race or nationality? And mixing pap smears with a food reference is just gross and condescending.

  3. ann

    i was so outraged last night when i saw this spot that i called AND emailed wcbs. i’m glad to see your blog all about this. it was offensive and insulting. i couldnt believe my eyes and ears when this aired!!

    • Good for you Ann. I have worked for many years in and around the PR and marketing communications business. I have worked on my share of patient information programs. This one simply tried to hard in a vacuum and missed the mark. It actually alienated the target it meant to engage. J&J saw that in a big way with the Motrin Moms. You can’t try to understand market you are not without doing some research. I find it hard to believe there were many Jewish women in the decision making on this campaign. If there were, they surely do not represent the masses. A quick focus group or a social media test on this would have shown them how off they truly were.

  4. Good intentions but HORRIBLE way to convey the message. Urgh…

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  6. La Tornadiza

    they have two prostate PSA’s one for Christmas & one for Chanukkah – odd, I haven’t found the Pap Smear PSA for Christmas

  7. I googled the ad to show it to a friend, and found your blog. The spot aired last night in Hawaii. Both the Christmas version and the Hanukkah version. Had I not seen the Christmas version first, I would have though SNL skit.

  8. Pingback: Bagel and Pap Smear with a side of Santa? « i could cry but i don’t have time

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