December 26th, 2009

I went to Caldwell Zoo today.

In England there's this cell phone advert where guy lists all the (usually fairly generic but inspirational) things (including presumably his cell phone supplier) that made him the thing he is today. The implication being that if you had all these things in your past you could be as successful as this guy.

Caldwell Zoo is a small zoo about 70 or so miles east of Dallas in the town of Tyler. It tries hard, but Tyler's small and was set up by a guy whose first definition of Caldwell Zoo was a parrot, 2 squirrels and a monkey (I kid you not).

Anyway I said all that to say this. If Caldwell Zoo was the guy in cell phone ad, you'd be left with the feeling that there was a distinct lack of vision coming from the guy. In short, it means well, but I don't think it really pulls it off.

It also reminds me of what Bill Bryson had to say about Wimpy (Britain's answer to McDonald's). Wimpys are a quaint mixture of take away joint and waitress service restaurant and Bryson suggested that the overall quaintness of the place, coupled with the fact they named a Hot Dog a Bender, meant they hadn't really grasped what you're supposed to do in a fast food joint.

I got the same feeling about Caldwell Zoo.

Incidentally, I'm told there is a Wimpys in Dallas.