homer – a pigeon trained to return home, someone who shows blind loyalty to a team or organization, typically ignoring any shortcomings or faults they have. (baseball) to hit a home run, a blind Greek poet and storyteller, Homer Simpson – voted the Greatest American of All Time.

The definition of “homer” I’m writing about would be the second one; “someone who shows blind loyalty to a team or organization, typically ignoring any shortcomings or faults they have.” I am not that guy. My loyalty to sports teams or organizations (outside of those in which I am personally involved) is zilch, zip, zero, nada, nothing. I do not cheer for corporations or products; and pro sports teams are both. My loyalty extends exactly as far as my arms can reach, when it comes to the stuff I own. Stuff, inanimate objects, do not deserve names or loyalty.

2004037cfullI really bumped heads on this when I started badmouthing VW and Winnebago, but I’ve been here before with Hardly Davidson, Suzuki, and Ducati. While it is true that all of these products are made by people (except, possibly, HD), those people are clearly no more invested in the stuff they make than bankers are loyal to the nations where their banks are housed. There would be no such thing as “Monday-Friday cars” if the assemblers, engineers, and inspectors gave a damn about the stuff they made. We know that’s not true, so why should I care about the same stuff? Charts like the one at the right are better indicators of who care about what and you do not want to be at the bottom of that list.

Brands generally do not deserve loyalty. Modern corporations have no loyalty to their customers and could care less if we live or die, as long as they can extract our cash. Products are even dumber. Inanimate objects do not deserve anything more than an expectation of some sort of usefulness. The moment a product no longer serves its purpose, it’s junk.

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