Hey Scott,

These are dark times. The political climate is toxic, the weather is dreary, and the stock market is in turmoil. The calendar says February, but can we all agree that it should be called “Dread-uary?” When it comes to months, our second one is definitely a #2.

But at least it has the Super Bowl! And what a SUPER Bowl it was!

It’s no secret that many people watch the Super Bowl just for the commercials, and given my love of the Buffalo Bills, you can often times count me among those people. The ads are as incredible as they are entertaining. These companies spend millions of dollars and thousands of man hours assessing, analyzing, planning, and preparing for their seminal moment. Given the magnitude of the stakes, there is nothing left to chance. They study their consumer and hone in on trigger points that will make them feel something so compelling that will cause them to make a decision or purchase a product. 

As we were walking home from our neighborhood party my wife asked, “Did you notice the difference in the ads this year?”

"UUMMMM… Other than every other one was for TIDE? No. Why?”

She said, “So many of them we either aspirational or inspirational? It just shows how despondent people are feeling right now."

Capitalism dictates that in order to grow and thrive, businesses must either solve a problem, address a pain point, or fill a need. And as far as I can tell, nearly all of the forty-five commercials that aired this past Sunday evening attempted to make us smile, cry, or feel joy. 

For one night, four dozen of America’s largest companies decided that what we needed most was not to be reminded to buy their product, but to be reminded that we are bound as people. AMAZING!

As you and your students grind through the “Dread-uary" ritual of rehearsing and preparing for concerts, contests, and competitions, perhaps we can all take a cue from corporate America remind ourselves to take a break every twenty minutes or so to smile, cry, or otherwise celebrate being human and how lucky we are to have music to express it.

Whether it's tears of laughter or tears of joy, it's still a SUPER BAWL!

Have a great week!