Thursday, September 25, 2008

Vacationing Reasoning

From swimming in the Carribean to meeting real live beef eaters, there is one commonality between all my major vacations. It doesn't really matter where I'm going so much as it is how I will feel once I get there. If I go on vacation and feel exactly as I do every day of every week when I'm not on vacation, then obviously something is very wrong. It might not even be a vacation at all but a poorly disguised business trip I've been tricked into.

Even if I'm doing a 2-day tour of all of London and am sleeping in a 2-star hotel, it will be okay because the extreme level of exhaustion reminds me that I am exploring a whole new city and the rough bed sheets tell me that I'm not sleeping in my own bed. The point is that unless you are someone of celebrity status, most people want to go on vacation to experience something different.

This search and yearning for something different has been the impetus for all the trips I've been on since birth. Never once did my parents have us pack our suitcases to drive eight hours away to live in a house identical to our own home in which we did all of our daily routine activities. Sadly, we are not the Jolie-Pitts of America, and if we were leaving our home it had better be for something well worth all that effort.

On Sunday afternoon I arrive with my assumptions in hand and best efforts in mind. I have been called over to do some copywriting, namely to help market my aunt's 1.something million dollar condo. Right there, that is something different and out of the ordinary. I have lots of ideas right away and set to work. A while later I sit back, pleased, and have my aunt and uncle come read what I've written. My aunt is quiet. And then she is quiet while we eat dinner. After dinner, she has the laptop in front of her with a stumped look on her face.

"I just don't like this part... upscale condo.... It just sounds so... snooty," she says.

I tell her that it is in fact an upscale condo and by calling it by its rightful name does not make it snooty.

"It's not really a gourmet kitchen... and the word luxurious... I mean, we don't want people to think it's a snobby place."

I'm not quite sure what she expects her target audience to be looking for in a vacation rental ad. I consider the following revisions.

Revision 1: A humdrum home that looks and feels just like yours! With the same exact carpet stains from that time little Bobby spilled his fruit punch in the living room, it'll feel like you never left home! Never mind the ocean views and direct beach access, you'll be too busy checking your work email with our hi-speed wireless internet and helping the kids with their homework in the large, fully-furnished study to care.

In the end, I think I convinced her that at $6,000 a month, the people who are able to shell out that kind of cash are looking to add a little cashmere lining to their life. She let me keep mostly everything in the ad. Now I just need someone to rent it or we might have to change it to revision 1 after all.

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