February 5, 2013

BBC tries to get its mind around the way it seems to be okay in the United States to say...

... kick ass.
Nowhere is this better demonstrated than in Kentucky, where a high-profile campaign has been launched to change the state's official slogan from "Unbridled Spirit" to "Kentucky Kicks Ass."...

According to Griffin VanMeter, one of the marketing professionals behind the rebranding push, the slogan was chosen to encapsulate the area's unpretentious dynamism.

"What it means to us is that instead of physically kicking someone's ass, it's evolved into a rallying cry that people can get behind," he says. "It's also a little risque which makes it that much better."

52 comments:

edutcher said...

Back when England was run by the English, one did not use intemperate language in formal situations.

This is a holdover.

We, OTOH, come from places like West-By-God Virginia, so we're still working on it.

ooonaughtykitty said...

I love that campaign. There's so much you can do with that tag line.

Surfed said...

Ass and penile implants....hmmmm. On a roll today aren't we Professor Althouse. I say round it out with a tits post and you'd have a trifecta of sorts.

Strelnikov said...

They'll never get it because "Kick Arse" just doesn't sound as cool.

BIll Sommerfeld said...

But see also: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/So_where_the_bloody_hell_are_you%3F

The Australians have strayed even further...

wyo sis said...

What we really need is a good reason NOT to be risque or to think risque is better. It's not better, it's cruder and it coarsens the culture.
Thus speaks the hypocrite. But private speech is different than public speech and a state's official slogan is public.

Nonapod said...

In Australia and the UK certain curses are used far more commonly and are much less offensive. For example a certain "C" word that's used as a very harsh insult towards a woman in the States is used as a more general insult across the pond.

Paul Zrimsek said...

Michelle Obama's ass kicks Kentucky. (Sorry.)

Maguro said...

A Bit of Frye and Laurie - Kickin' Ass

EMD said...

It's quite good.

ricpic said...

Unbridled spirit? You callin' me an unbridled spirit? Why I'm gonna kick your ass!

Mitchell the Bat said...

"What it means to us is that instead of physically kicking someone's ass, it's evolved into a rallying cry that people can get behind," he says.

Mealy-mouth spokesman gonna mealy-mouth.

chrisnavin.com said...

Perhaps we can point to our revolution, where after a period of fairly one-sided ass-kicking, then on to more mutual ass-kicking, we finally kicked their asses out.

Let's be clear-eyed about it, without so much sentiment. You're an ally, and we can define a lot of shared interest in an often dangerous world. There's mutual distrust as well.

P.S. I'll give any bloke on the street 100 quid and a jar of Marmite to take back either Tina Brown, Piers Morgan, or Andrew Sullivan. That's 100 quid each and a jar of Marmite.

tmitsss said...

And the official state dance of South Carolina is the Shag

FWBuff said...

I'm with you, wyo sis, at 2:42. Well said.

kentuckyliz said...

Oh the genteel end of Kentucky will not approve.

Unbridled Spirit was voted by the commonwealthians.

It refers to horse bridles (Thoroughbreds! Derby!) and spirit (bourbon! moonshine!) -- all you need is a cig hanging from the horse's mouth, and you got the trifecta.

And a Camry and a Corvette in the background.

Soundtrack is bluegrass.

I personally will accept the marketing campaign:

KENTUCKYLIZ KICKS ASS

Lydia said...

Seems the state's tourism department isn't with the new slogan:

"We certainly would not sanction or endorse that phraseology," says state tourism department spokesman Pat Stipes. "These guys are Kentucky natives and they love the state. But they have a different constituency. Which is no one."

richlb said...

I'm always amused when watching BBC America that they don't bleep out "shit" wheras they do bleep some other words. Shit is OK in the UK.

It's especially jarring when I'm watching a BBC America broadcast of an American show - where it was origianlly bleeped out in the US (say, a repeat of the US version of Gordon Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares) but left in for the Brits. And believe me, you hear a lot of "shit" from Gordon Ramsay.

virgil xenophon said...

@kentuckyliz/
"kentuckyliz kicks ass"

I lived in Louisville for almost 20 years, maybe I should shuck my wife and move back---I may be falling in LU, er LUST! lol

Shanna said...

A player could "kick ass" at chess by deploying an audacious opening manoeuvre. A florist might compose a "kick-ass" bouquet of chrysanthemums

The Brits are so funny. The whole article reads like an old professor trying to figure out what the kids are doing.

ConsultantGuy said...

Irony can be very ironic sometimes.
I watch a lot of British TV on BBC America and I don't think the Limeys have a leg to stand on when it comes to complaints about our coarse discourse. Phrases I hear often on BBCA shows (sometimes bleeped for our sensitive American ears) with their American English translations:
Arse = Ass/Butt
Cock = Cock
Bugger = Anal intercourse (sometimes affectionate)
Shit/Shite = Shit
Piss = Piss
Ball bag = Scrotum
Bollocks = Testicles

When discussing Germany and Germans the Brits also have a bit of a tendency to gloat about WWII; and when discussing the French, the word "surrender" seems to pop up a lot. The British also seem to think that all Americans weigh over 300 pounds.

So, for some reason it's hard to take seriously BBC complaints about "Kentucky Kicks Ass"

Astro said...

I thought the old slogan was well matched to Kentucky's two noted industries, horseracing and distilling.
The new slogan, meh. It has no character that says 'Kentucky'. Could be Texas, Wyoming, Chris Christie's New Jersey, even North Dakota these days. It's like saying "Dammit, we're not Vermont."

Shanna said...

I don't think the Limeys have a leg to stand on when it comes to complaints about our coarse discourse.

They are also pretty obsessed with fart jokes.

Amartel said...

The British do not have standing to lecture anybody about vulgar language.

This is like the BBC trying to get its mind around the way it seems okay in the US to constantly expand the scope and role of government at the expense of individual personal rights.

Astro said...

ConsultantGuy has a point - but it can go further. All over the British isles the F word (sometimes pronounced as feckin') is said everywhere by men and women of all ages even in just regular conversation.

Lonetown said...

Too close to kiss ass. The comic possibilities abound.

Mary Beth said...

Maguro said...

A Bit of Frye and Laurie - Kickin' Ass

2/5/13, 2:46 PM


On one episode of QI, Stephen Fry said he likes the slogan, "Unbridled Spirit".

LordSomber said...

"Unpretentious dynamism," not to be confused with Dynamic Tension.

How about Indomitable Spirit?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AckxOWz868k

LB said...

I thought that most Kentuckians DID weigh 300 lbs or more. Isn't the state one of the top 10 where obesity rates are higher? http://health.usnews.com/health-news/diet-fitness/photos/top-10-fat-states-where-obesity-rates-are-highest/10
If that is indeed fact, WHY would we want to draw attention to our backside by mentioning "ass" on the license plate? That's laughable and trendy sounding, rather than risque.

phx said...

What we really need is a good reason NOT to be risque or to think risque is better. It's not better, it's cruder and it coarsens the culture.
Thus speaks the hypocrite. But private speech is different than public speech and a state's official slogan is public.


I completely agree with this.
Junk. culture.

uffda said...

I'm generally opposed to the public coarsening of society, but would endorse "Shit Happens" on every Wash DC license plate.

Tom said...

I grew up in Kentucky and knew it for three things: Pretty Horses, Fast Women & Bourbon Whiskey

Or the 3 M's of Kentucky:

Moonshine
Marijuana &
Mushrooms


kentuckyliz said...

I like how the text is like Knob Creek bourbon and other high end bourbon labels.

We rock the oak barrel, thass fo sho.

kentuckyliz said...

Virgil, stay home. I grew up in Iowa.

The grass is always greener on the other side, because you are viewing it from a side angle.

Once you hop the fence and you're with that apparently greener grass, you are looking down from above and you see all the dirt too. Then the grass on the other side of the fence looks much greener all of a sudden.

Kentucky Woman

kentuckyliz said...

Kentucky Women

No they ain't going to home to mama
Till they drink all of their moonshine

(Sundy Best)

kentuckyliz said...

I found those songs while trying to find a song...a guy is talking about his girlfriend from Kentucky....aw there ain't no woman like that. Kind of talky on those lines. Tom Petty or John Mellencamp or something. Someone help me remember.

Chip Ahoy said...

They're taking the piss, what's so hard to understand about that? I'm busy right now, trying to get my mind around why Americans think "take a powder" means "leave" and not "dust yourself with talc." I saw that in a crossword puzzle and I'm all what? what? what?

kentuckyliz said...

How Mountain Girls Can Love

Stanley Brothers version
if you like it old school

Ricky Skaggs and Kentucky Thunder version if you like it fresh...and you can see the awesome pickin'

kentuckyliz said...

Chip, no high school sports experience?

Take a powder=
get off the field and go to the locker room...where you would use your freshly scented talc

kentuckyliz said...

With the popularity of all the hillbilly type reality shows, hillbilly p0rn is skyrocketing in popularity.

Not like I know.

Chip Ahoy said...

The grass in Denver actually is greener than I've seen other places. Stays greener too even once you're in it, and this is perplexing because the place is not known for that, but even with xeriscaping popular, and even being near desert, the green plush grass is awesome. It's so thick it must be thatched. Whoever heard of that? We moved from Louisiana where the grass had long turned brown, came up here to covered snow. Made a snowman and the roll left behind perfectly green thick lawn. Pop pop pop pop pop, that was the sound of our minds being blown, right there, brains all over the place. Snow, brains, and a swath of green grass. See? I'm Gatsby over here. Oh wait, the light glinted off the snow and then a cloud passed and cast a pall over the backyard scene where life had drained to puddle of a shadow the base of an incomplete snowman, and yet, there the grass remained green unperturbed.

virgil xenophon said...

@kentuckyLiz/

Dont worry, you're safe. (I'm originally from Illinois, btw) My Creole Queen wife of 39 years from Opelousas (Home of Jim Bowie btw, there is now a branch bank on his homesite, only thing left is a historical marker, lol) would have something to say about it all and I'm not ABOUT to mess with She Who Must Be Obeyed--besides, she's too good of a cook..

virgil xenophon said...

@Chip Ahoy/

You mentioned Cherry Creek on another thread and I asked if you lived there as I had lived there briefly in 1967, but you had moved on, iirc. Great memories of Denver, Estas Park, Grand Lake, Upper Bear Creek Canyon, Steamboat--the whole area, really. Was a member of the Denver Tennis Club--life was a ball then for this then single 24-year-old.

Scott M said...

The English have a problem with American slang? The people that have a common cuss word that specifically references menstruation? The people who say "bollocks" (balls, ie, testicles) when something sucks, but say, "dogs bollocks" (dog testicles) when it's good?

Pull the other one, mate.

Scott M said...

The English have a problem with American slang? The people that have a common cuss word that specifically references menstruation? The people who say "bollocks" (balls, ie, testicles) when something sucks, but say, "dogs bollocks" (dog testicles) when it's good?

Pull the other one, mate.

Patrick said...

I hate your ass face!

Big Mike said...

Is it because they refer to the posterior region of the human body as "arse" and are assuming that they kick donkeys in Kentucky?

DADvocate said...

With all due respect to Kentuckyliz, Kentucky ain't that kick ass. Plus, it's horse country, not mule country.

Chip S. said...

Coming soon...

New Jersey

What the Fuck Are You Lookin' At?

Crimso said...

All this talk of KY kicking ass, and no mention of college basketball? Even UK contributes some to the commonwealth's basketball reputation (admit it, UofL carries most of the weight; in football too, ask anybody in Florida).

And only a couple of mentions of the homegrown. It will knock you on your ass and then kick it while you're down. One-hit weed that feels like a hit of acid. Errr, not that I would know, that's what I've been told by my friends.

And coal? Caves? Burgoo? Not feelin the love for the commonwealth.

DADvocate said...

It should be "Kentucky - Where Basketball Matters"

SGT Ted said...

Beavis and Butthead grew up to be form an advertising company. Who knew?