That is the only audience I can imagine VW could possibly be targeting with their ‘Make Friends With Your Fast’ ad compaign for the GTI (You can see all four ads here). The concept is that The Fast, a menacing little thing that looks like a cross between PacMan and Darth Vader, is the embodiment of the driver’s need to drive a high-performance car, and drive fast. Duh.

In one of the ads, a young man is driving with his girlfriend, windows down. Her hair is getting blown everywhere, so she asks if he can put the windows up. The “Fast” growls “My Fast likes to drive with the windows down.” So the driver cuts her off, saying “Sweetie, it’s really hard to enjoy the sound of the engine with all that yackin’.”

Charming. Really hope he wasn’t planning on getting any action any time soon. In fact, all of the ‘Fast’ ads seem to have the common theme “If you buy a VW GTI, you will liberate your inner asshole.” This is supposed to sell cars? What were you thinking, VW?

We have mangy squirrels in our neighborhood. I mean that all too literally, with my tongue carefully kept out of my cheek. A few weeks ago, we noticed some of the squirrels that hang out in our yard looked like they had been shaved bald. It’s AMAZING how scrawny those things are when you get the fur off them. Anyway, they looked bad. The kids were very, very concerned. Especially because one of them had a nasty, nasty limp. How could a wounded squirrel with no fur survive the rest of the winter?

I looked online for possible reasons for this condition, and decided it was probably mange. A few days later, someone wrote a letter to the paper asking about ‘bald squirrels’, and the reporter confirmed that it was mange, and they would either get over it, and be fine, or they would die of some secondary illness.

We’ve explained this to the kids, standing at the kitchen window, with Elton John’s “Circle of Life” playing softly in the background. Mostly we’ve told them under no circumstances are they to go near any squirrel, especially one that looks like it’s a skinhead.

Fortunately, some of the scalped squirrels are looking decidedly more fuzzy these days. We have hope that they will shrug off this parasite, and grow back their normally luxurious pelts before too long. That gimpy one still looks like hell, though. I’m amazed the neighborhood cats (of which we have a great number) haven’t taken him out.