Beer-Drinker Typology, Mapping the Organics, Etc.

In these egalitarian times, it would be impolitic to suggest a zoo should be more fun for the human visitors than for the nonhuman residents. Ads for the Oregon Zoo (via Cole & Weber/Red Cell’s Seattle and Portland offices) avoid that breach of decorum as they place visitor and visited on the same plane. But they don’t go so far as to suggest you’d be invading an animal’s privacy by peering at it. Thus, the Portland institution distinguishes itself from the National Zoo in Washington, D.C., which recently refused to release the medical records of a deceased giraffe on the grounds that doing so would violate the animal’s right to privacy.

As the number of very elderly Americans rises, so does the number of people who have personal acquaintance with an Alzheimer’s sufferer. A poll conducted for ABCNews found 46 percent of women and 36 percent of men saying they have a close friend or relative who’s got the condition. Whites were more likely than blacks to say so (by a margin of 43 percent to 31 percent).

Don’t drink and hoe. A study by Scarborough Research finds that 47 percent of people who drink inexpensive beer also like to garden. On the other hand, devotees of extreme sports are 107 percent more likely than the average consumer to drink imported brews. Hunters and golfers are 64 percent more likely than the norm to drink domestic light beer. With fancy brands targeting the refined palates of experienced drinkers, young folks are left to sop up the cheap stuff. Nearly half the people who drank inexpensive brands during the previous30 days fall into the 21-34-year-old cohort.

No doubt they’ve adopted other vices to take up the slack. Nonetheless, high school students are showing more prudence when it comes to tobacco. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says 28.5 percent of high school students were “current smokers” last year (meaning they’d smoked at least one cigarette in the 30 days before being polled), vs. 36.4 percent in 1997. The rate of “frequent smoking” (i.e., smoking on at least 20 of the previous 30 days) fell from 16.8 percent in 1999 to 13.8 percent in 2001.

Organics are from Vermont, inorganics are from Nebraska. A poll by Vertis finds New Englanders more likely than inhabitants of other regions to say they buy organic foods. Twenty-two percent of consumers there said they regularly purchase organic foods, vs. 18 percent on the West Coast and 14 percent in the Southeast. Organic shoppers were thinnest on the ground(5 percent) in a swath of central-U.S. states extending from Kansas to Minnesota.

While everyone’s against hunger in principle, “compassion fatigue” can dampen people’s impulse to take philanthropic action. A campaign for the Chattanooga Area Food Bank in Tennessee gets attention by using forks as a visual device. Another ad in the series (by Scalise Creative of Chattanooga) twists the prongs into a peace symbol as the headline urges, “Make War on Hunger.”

Not only do we like Canada. An Ipsos-Reid poll finds 30 percent of Americans regard it as “just another state,” vs. 69 percent who view it as a foreign country. Something tells me the Canadians won’t feel flattered.