Appsolutely Shame-ulous

Posted by Adam on November 13, 2007

So last night the team went out for a couple beers to mentally unwind after a big meeting. Peter suggested we go to The Ginger Man, a pretty old school bar with lots of dark wood, flattering lighting, and some 80 international beers on tap. It was a quiet Happy Hour crowd so the Asian camera crew walking around filming patrons was especially intriguing.Before I go any further, I should note that we had just come from a meeting with potential investors so we were all dressed in suits. I was also sporting a white Sparkker baseball cap (available in one-size-fits-all for a low low bargain bin price at Sparkker Store).

Hoping to get the hat – and more importantly the Sparkker name and logo – caught on any sort of videotape, we flagged down the Producer, Sue. The pretty woman explained in a thick accent that they were from Japanese network news (akin to something as popular as NBC Nightly News) and were shooting a story on Americans enjoying Kiuchi Beer, Japan’s Gold Medal winning White Ale. After some charming persuasion, she brought over a pint of Kiuchi and the camera crew. She told me not to hold back when it came to describing the gustatory superiority of the award winner.

Seeing it as a great opportunity for self-promotion, the camera light went on, I took one sip and immediately launched into a Debbie Does Dallas-esque display of euphoria. I moaned with satisfaction, pounded the table with my fist, and passed the beer to Peter and Dan so they could sample the golden nectar. They too joined me in the revolting sycophancy. Dan demanded the waitress bring him a Kiuchi too, but in an even bigger glass, while Peter remarked with a smile and wink, “This is the best beer I’ve ever had”. We weren’t taking any chances, we had to get the hat on Japanese TV.

And that brings us back to the hat. I’m a tall guy, so sometimes it’s hard for shorter people, or lower angled cameras for that matter, to see the logo on whatever baseball hat I’m wearing. From his vantage point, Dan could see that the camera might’ve been missing the logo on the hat so he nudged me and told me tilt my head down. From then on, after every sip I took, I bowed my head slowly. I probably looked pretty odd to the few Americans watching from their bar stools, but I hoped Sue would just think I was a dumb American trying to replicate what movies and television have taught me is a Japanese gesture of deference.

She didn’t seem to mind the incessant head dipping and proceeded with some questions about the beer. This is when things got even uglier.

Sue: What does the beer taste like?
Me: It’s light and delicious!
Sue: Would you say it’s refreshing?
Me. Refreshing? You bet it is, I feel like I could run a marathon right now.
Sue: What would you compare it to?
Me (pretending to mull over the question by bowing my head and scratching/pointing at the Sparkker logo): It’s very Sparkkery.
Quick Note: The moment that word came out of my mouth I got really nervous that she was going to get offended and think I was making fun of her, saying Sparkle-y in an Asian accent, but really I wasn’t, I was just trying to plug the Website, I swear! She didn’t seem to mind though, so neither did I. She pressed on:
Sue: Sparkkery?
Me: Oh yeah, VERY sparkkery. It’s like champagne. In fact, I’d say that Kiuchi is the champagne of Japanese White Ales.
Sue: Ohhh champagne.
Me: Sparkkery champagne.

With that the interview was over. Sue seemed really happy with how it went. Peter and Dan are pretty confident that we’re going to get on the air. Dan is also convinced that they’re going to dub over my voice and simply invent whatever they want me to say anyway. I imagine I’ll end up telling the nice people of Japan something like:
“This is super #1 beer of loves. It fill me up. Let’s drinking Kiuchi!”

If you’re reading this and you live in Japan, look for Sparkker on the Network News! Also if you’re reading this and you live in Japan, I sincerely apologize for any incidental offensiveness.

And by the way, the beer was actually really delicious. Long after the cameras were off and the crew had disappeared, Dan ordered one for himself. Here’s the website: Kiuchi Brewery


Sparkker Chief Friend Maker


One Response to “Appsolutely Shame-ulous”

  1. […] I, however, choose to believe that they found Sparkker after seeing us on the Japanese Network News. […]

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