One thing that always pisses me off about reading the NYT magazine every week is the completely obsequious ads that are marketed toward people with a HELL of a lot more money than me.  It pissed me off even when I was making big city money.  It pisses me off even more now that I’m making a lot less in suburbia.

As always, the Patek Phillip ads are irritating (love the watches, and the motto is cute, but could you please find ‘next generation boys’ that don’t look like total prats?)  See here, for examples (the ones on the left, with the “dad” and “asshole young man”).

But, what really set me off yesterday was an ad for First Republic Bank.  They’ve had this series of ads for its private banking and other services and it features smiling pictures of wealthy folk talking about how happy they are with FRB’s services.  Usually, its some wall street type and his wife holding their golden-haired toddler. Wev.

This week’s ad, however, was in some ways a refreshing change: an African-American couple.*  Great!  Glad to see banks seeing that it’s not just whites who get rich, or that get rich in the “work hard as major executive to big huge company and am now really into private banking services way” as opposed to sports/entertainment/see my bling way, which seems to be the main way ads/media tends to promote wealthy blacks.

BUT, here, as in every other FRB ad, underneath the smugly, smiling picture, they list the couple’s names and their occupations:

       “Lee [last name]**, telecom executive”
       “Laura [last name], attorney at law, wife and mother”

Notice anything?  Who the hell is Laura married to, if not Lee?  Who the hell is the father of her childen?  Lee? Doesn’t look like it because father is not listed as one of HIS occupations.  Now, to be fair to the bank, perhaps this really is the allocation, and ONLY Laura has responsibility for the kids and ONLY Laura has the responsibility to be a spouse to Lee and he has none to her? (assuming they are even married to each other, b/c he sure isn’t touting it – but it sure sounds as if he is free to do whatever the hell he wants, and she and the kids can go jump in a lake).  Really, Madison Avenue & Wall Street, get a FUCKING CLUE.

*I’m going on the picture, I have no idea, obviously, how they self-identify.
** Updated to redact last names because I blame the advertising company and because the couple may well be fictional. The point is the job description.

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