While watching the Lions morph into a football team last season, RJ noticed an advertisement for the Jeep Wrangler that made the claim that "Jeep Wrangler owners speak a language of their own." In the commercial, an attractive capitalist girl makes eye contact with a rugged capitalist boy in a picturesque capitalist eating establishment, writes something on a napkin, crumples the napkin, and then drops it by the rugged boy.
Next, we see a Jeep driving along a gravel road in the mountains and parking next to another Jeep in the vicinity of a spectacular waterfall. After the mountain breeze tousles the attractive girl's hair in the manner beloved by rugged, red-blooded males everywhere, we are made privy to the writing on the napkin:
Finally, we learn that "Jeep Wrangler owners speak a language of their own" (which, apparently, is numeric), and we are encouraged to make the lives of the attractive and rugged young people our own.
RJ was not, however, talked into purchasing a new Jeep. What was really important to RJ was the question of whether the coordinates on the napkin were real, or whether Jeep was just making stuff up. Her concern is not without merit. It is of vital importance, I believe, because if Jeep is just making up coordinates with no concern for reality, then they may be making up the possibility that an attractive girl and a rugged guy can find true happiness hiking in the untamed wilderness of America. And that would be a crushing blow to life as we know it.
Here's the specific problem that RJ posed for the rugged boy with the napkin. The attractive girl, Jenny, has neglected to specify the location of the proposed meeting spot down to the arc second. An arc second may be a mere 1/3600th of a degree, but at that location on the earth's surface, one arc minute squared covers 2.16 square miles. Finding a Jenny in the wilderness could be as difficult as finding a needle in a haystack, depending on the 2.16 square miles under consideration.
So now we have two questions, one specific and one general.
1. In general, are Jenny's coordinates anywhere near a waterfall?
2. If so, has she any hope of meeting the rugged boy of her dreams and winning his heart with her wind toussled hair, or will he end up lost in the woods?
The answer to the first question is quite simple: Jeep (or rather, their production company) has done their homework. 37° 55' N, 107° 46' W puts us right down near Telluride, CO. More specifically, the coordinates put us down southwest of Telluride, near Bridal Veil Creek. There is, in fact, a waterfall on Bridal Veil Creek, Bridal Veil Falls (another view), which is the longest freefalling waterfall in Colorado, falling 360 feet.
Examining the topopgraphy surrounding the coordinates on Jenny's napkin indicates that the coordinates (assuming that Jenny meant for the rugged boy to go to exactly 37° 55' 00" N, 107° 46' 00" W, and just left off the arc seconds because she and the rugged boy speak a language of their own) are about 300 meters away from the location of Bridal Veil Falls. Futhermore, the only road in the area, is the nearby Jeeperiffic gravel road to the Bridal Veil Falls trail.
Hooray! All the rugged boy had to do was plug the coordinates into his GPS equiped Wrangler, and with a little knowledge of the area, he would be watching the wind tousle his beloved-to-be's hair. Ain't technology grand?
Of course, armed with this information, it's now easy to discover that the Colorado Film Commission helped a company called Bob Industries find their way to Telluride (and beyond) to tell the story of boy meets girl by Jeep.
• If you're curious, the exact coordinates for Bridal Veil Falls are 37° 55' 9" N, 107° 46' 10" W.
• There seems to be great interest in the actress who plays 'Jenny' in this ad. I know this because of the searches that lead readers here, and the email that those readers send me.
So I emailed the production company and alerted them to this issue. They replied (and I quote):
"Jenny was played by Rachel Leigh Minier."
I'm not sure how this helps those readers who are Googling 'jeep commercial jenny', but there it is.
Sunday, September 29th, 2002