Saturday, June 21, 2008

Getting ready for Mike Myers

English has many peculiarities, but one that has always fascinated me is how the phrase "get ready" has been rendered so meaningless.

Example: a TV commercial for the new Mike Myers comedy The Love Guru just implored me to "Get ready for the comedy event of the summer!" Basically, what the studio is saying is, "A new Mike Myers film opening soon." The rest is just a rather lame attempt to get me psyched. For it is as matter of principle that one of the ways I "get ready" for something like this is to glean the consensus of film critics, who have lambasted this alleged comedy as Myers' weakest effort so far, with a dismal Tomatometer rating of 16 percent. And yet, I feel certain that this was not the way Paramount Studios is expecting any filmgoer to "get ready" for this particular cinematic debut.

This begs the question: how should one get ready for something like this? Obviously we should get showered and dressed, make sure we have $25 to buy popcorn and soda, fill the car with gasoline and so on. But these things go without saying, no? Is there some other way I should be preparing myself for The Love Guru, other than finding a gas mask to wear during the screening?

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