In the past I’ve attained accidental blogging success by recalling random things from when I was a young ‘un and people have searched for it and found sweet relief from something that was half-nagging at them but mostly unremembered. Today I’m taking the mothballs off the blog to try to do that in reverse, because for whatever reason I’ve got a poetic earworm from what I think was a beer advert from the 1990s.
It had a male voiceover, reciting what I believe to be a poem called “What’s Going Down” over what in my head was dystopian urban imagery. I’ve googled the words I can remember, and have found one solitary reference to it in a DigitalSpy forum post. That’s it – and that’s based on somebody’s recollection of being taught the poem at school, not in the context of the advert!
Here’s the text as recalled by DigitalSpy user Lazlo_St_Pierre back in 2007 (!) (I’d considered registering and pinging him message but he’s been inactive since 2014 on there).
I’m looking through you
I’m looking through me
I’m looking through them,
And what do I see?
I see workers working
And clowns with frowns
Pressing buttons, controlling towns
No. It’s what’s going down.
I see dishonourable intentions
And hopeless, rusting implications
Of dodgy, clapped-out, mapped-out futures
No. It’s what’s going down
There’s no need to be a half-baked couch potato
In strait-jacket and tie
Or a jet-set wet in debt
Cause he’s had too much pie in the sky
Or getting your kicks
Sticking your snitch
In a stranger’s curriculum vitae
I get where it’s at, cat
I don’t race with rats
I see through all that
There’s no grounds for frowns
Or improper nouns.
It’s just what’s going down.
I can certainly recall the start, first verse and the end verse too – and the final flourish of the advert finished with “It’s just what’s going down, cheers!” – presumably with the narrator supping on whatever beverage it was being advertised.
So there’s the challenge – who can remember what the advert was for? Bonus points if you manage to find a clip of it on YouTube – I’ve tried (albeit not very hard), and failed dismally!