Beautiful Commercial, Ugly Reactions

Fun fact about myself:  Literally every single thing makes me cry. Videos of soldiers coming home, sports highlight reels, weddings, funerals, a particularly adorable puppy, compliments, every Disney movie, and commercials.

Oh, commercials.  30-60 seconds of emotional manipulation.   I think it started with that Folgers commercial when Peter surprises his family by coming home for Christmas and, I don’t know, brews coffee or something.  Also, every single Google Chrome commercial.

So when I watched this touching Expedia commercial, I cried.  As usual.  My coworkers have stopped asking me what’s wrong when they see me dabbing my eyes at my desk.

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If you can’t see the video, it’s a really sweet story about a father, Artie Goldstein, flying across the country to attend the wedding of his daughter, Jill Goldstein, to Nikki Weiss.  It focuses on the emotional journey of his struggle to accept the fact that his daughter is gay, and culminates in a really touching (read: tear-inducing) speech at the wedding:

When Jill was born, there was a certain spark in her eye and a glow in her heart that quickly became very apparent to Julie and I. When she got a little older, all of a sudden, that spark that I look for in your eyes and your heart, I didn’t see.  And it pained us greatly. And all of a sudden: Bam! There’s Nikki, and that spark is back.  And we are just so happy that we have our Jill back, and now we have Nikki. And we love you both.

The company’s slogan “Find Your Understanding” comes up.  Et tu, Expedia? It’s getting harder and harder to watch television without roller coasters of emotions, you know.

Lovely commercial, right?  A father coming to terms with who his daughter is and being truly happy for her.  Touching, right?  Tale as old as time, right?


Well, if you’re a certain type of Christian, that is.

Buzzfeed put together a compilation of some of the ickiest responses:

That last one is my favorite because it reminds me of Rick Santorum and how church/state separation makes him want to throw up.

Big ups, as always, to Christian L-O-V-E.

About Jessica Bluemke

Jessica Bluemke grew up in the suburbs of Chicago and graduated from Ball State University in 2008 with a BA in Literature. She currently works as a writer and resides on the North side of Chicago.

  • Cos2mwiz2

    Religion Poisons. Period. 

  • Bnerd

    The end of the video really made me tear up. Ugh. So beautiful. I’ve talked a lot lately about marriage equality because I live in Washington, and as a gay man, it’s obviously something very personal to me. But videos like these do more justice than I could. The love they share; as a lesbian couple, with their family and friends… how can you see that and not be moved? How can you see the smiles, the laughter, the tears of joy and say “This is wrong”. It really boggles my mind. I look at my own relationship, and all the happiness he’s brought me and the love that we share together, and I can never understand how someone could be so opposed to that. It’s scary to know that there are people who are truly, deeply opposed to genuine love and commitment.

  • GrammarNazi

    “…Literally every single thing makes me cry.” 

    Really? Literally? 

    Perhaps a refresher might help:

    Oh, and yeah…religious bigots suck. Next.

  • Adviser Moppet

    I love the second comment coming from the black woman. If she’s all for traditional marriage I hope she’s willing to give up her marriage seeing as traditional marriage in this country was just between two white people.

  • Suesswaffle

    But even if Jill GOLDSTEIN married a Nick Weiss and it was nice and heterosexual…  I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that isn’t going to be a marriage under the Christian God and baby Jesus. 

    Wonder why they don’t complain about Jewish or Athiest (or other non Christians) heterosexuals getting married?  Surely all non christian weddings are similarly against god?  oops… I started using those facts and logic again.

  • jdm8

    There is a second definition:

    1. In a literal manner or sense; exactly: “the driver took it literally when asked to go straight over the traffic circle”.
    2. Used to acknowledge that something is not literally true but is used for emphasis or to express strong feeling.

  • David B.
  • CelticWhisper

    “Homosexuality is a sexual disorder.  Go ahead try to prove me wrong.”

  • Jenprohaska

    It made me cry too!  I love how honest the commercial was.  A lot of parents would have a hard time with it (I personally wouldn’t, I think) but he got over it and realized that he loves his daughter, supports her life, and accepts her wife with open arms.  To me, this is simply beautiful when people learn they can change, that maybe they’ve been wrong.

  • Tainda

    I’m the same way about stuff on tv/movies making me cry and yet I don’t cry at most things in my personal life lol  I cry when my favorite tv shows end and I cry EVERY time I watch their finales (Star Trek TNG and Firefly are the worst lol)

    People who hate on two people who are happy together make me sick.  I’m happy for anyone that can find happiness!  Then again, I respect other people even those different than I am.

  • jose

    Gay marriage is winning. I’m positive we’ll hear an apology from the Vatican in about 150 years probably. They’ll say that by praying really hard, they have revelated a new piece of the totally totally objective absolute morality upon which catholicism totally is founded Ikidyounot, and it turns out it supports gay marriage! So there. “oops”, right? haha!

  • Troy Boyle

    This highlight for me something that I think people often forget: companies, even wealthy, powerful companies, are composed of PEOPLE. The same people that are in our families, the same people that are in our military reserves, and in our volunteer fire departments. We often refer to the military-industrial complex – people. We rail against theists and fundamentalists – people. Mitt Romney likes to disparage government – people. We need to see beyond the labels of theist/atheist, Democrat and Republican, Green and Libertarian – find that common ground, find that social ethos.

    This was a beautiful commercial, made by people, about people, from a company that has apparently realized that homosexuals are PEOPLE. Kudos to them. 

  • TerranRich

    Am I the only one who finds it sad that “literally” now also means “not really literally”?

  • RobertoTheChi

    What a bunch of uneducated bigots those people are. I just wish their names weren’t covered so everyone could see what an ignorant group that is in case someone ever tries to Google them and this would come up.


    You’re literally an idiot.

  • WBW

    I’m the type to make sarcastic smoochy noises when movie music swells and camera rushes in for that passionate first kiss.  This is promptly met by an eye roll from my wife and a light smack across the arm or back of the head.  I don’t get moved by movies often, commercials even less so. 
    Now I have to admit I got a bit misty eyed when I saw this one.  Big thumbs up to for the ad’s content and effective execution.  As for the angry voices of opposition, I think of them as gasps of a mindset slowly growing extinct.  Not very long ago an advertisement like this would be considered an unthinkable marketing decision.  Now,  we just watched a company of good note putting money into a commercial with a positive outlook on marriage equality and attaching their name to it.  Let the malcontents rant and rave, this is a win.

  • Kevin White

    Such a beautiful video. It made me tear up right at the end, especially when the daughter and her dad were dancing.

    In other news, religious bigotry sucks.

  • Vukota

    I wish the names of these people were not blocked out. Not that I intend to harass them (or endorse any such action), but I do believe they should live with the shame of making such hateful comments. 

  • Sindigo

    I’m with you, even if no-one else is. There is a beauty in language and sometimes it needs defending.

  • nongrammernazi

    languages live and change, clinging to outdated definitions is not beautiful

  • C Peterson

    Being black is a skin disorder. Go ahead and try to prove me wrong!

  • Gringa

     Or “look at this beautiful thing that god created!”

  • Holytape

    If I were Jesus, I would come back to earth just to gay marry the pope.    Just to screw with the fundamentalists’ heads. 

  • The Captain

    That’s one of my biggest pet peeves too, along with “irregardless” “common sense” and “unnatural”.

  • The Captain

    Yes, and others who no longer care what words actually mean.

  • The Captain

    And using any old word to mean anything you want it too is also neither beautiful, or coherent.

    One does not have to be a grammar nazi to at least make an attempt at using the language properly. And importantly, one does not have to succeed at it either, as long as they are making an attempt. I write quickly, and spell badly, but I do try to use the best words to convey my meanings (even if they are considered “bad” words). 

    But justifying using any word you want, to mean anything you want is justifying the dumbing down of our society, all in the name of  “change”. I axe you, is that a good thing?

  • Shuteme

    When I see those loving xtian post it makes me want to grab those assholes by their ears and scream into their faces.. Fuck you AND Fuck your imaginary impotent monster of hate god!

  • Shuteme

    I disregard that irreguardlessly.

  • Persephone

    I’m married to another woman, and my mother is against same-sex marriage. No words of mine could soften her heart, nor could the words of those who are wiser and smarter than I am. Needless to say, she and I now talk about once or twice a year at most.

  • Michael

    It annoys me most when people say that they could/couldn’t care less, then try to claim that one of them is okay to use. They’re both wrong.

  • Jake Lsewhere

     I find it sadder that “now” means “for the last 250 years” to some people.

  • Bruce Heerssen

    Let me fix that for you:

    “Using any old word to mean anything you want it to is neither beautiful nor coherent.”

    There, much better.

    (Heh. I’m sorry, I just couldn’t resist.)

  • TerranRich

    Why are both of them wrong? If you say “I could care less,” it doesn’t mean what people think it means. They think it means you don’t care, but in reality it means that you do care somewhat.

    Saying “I could not care less” means that there is no possible way that the number of fucks you give could ever be lower than they currently are — which is to say, zero.

  • Bruce Heerssen

    What’s funny is that you could try, but you could never succeed no matter how well presented or convincing your argument may be.

  • Michaelbrice

    Axe is a noun, no ‘e’ in ax when used as a verb,

    but that’s o.k., I got the meaning  :)

  • The Captain

    Yep, as I said “I write quickly, and spell badly” but I try :)

  • Erik D Red

    It took about three hundred to admit the earth circles the sun, and about another hundred to sort of apologize, and that’s about a measurable and provable scientific fact.  Something squishier like the morality of gay marriage will take far longer for them to concede.

  • Coyotenose

    Grammar Nazis are identified by their need to correct others. Your usage of the term in this post is incorrect.

  • Coyotenose

     Proving her wrong is very easy. Convincing her is what is impossible.

  • Russian Alex

    Let them spout that shit out of their mouths. Those are some sad, sad people. They make an excellent example of impotence and moral bankruptcy of religious morality.

  • Russian Alex
  • Troels Jakobsen

    It’s enough to make you cry.

  • Randomfactor

    The first guy has a point, though.  If you’re Catholic, and you see nothing wrong with the love expressed in that commercial–RUN AWAY!  Leave the pews for a religion less institutionally insane, and take your friends with you.

  • Miss_Beara

    That’s so sad. :(  

  • Lacie

    Try as I might, I can not understand why their sky man cares so much about who marries who. It doesn’t seem to affect them in the slightest.

  • chicago dyke, Blonde

    once again, all i can think to say is that truly “straight” people don’t think, obsess or concern themselves with queer sex. because, you know, they’re… straight. even if gawd and jeebus tell you (thru the mouths of their representatives, of course, who also happen to need a weekly check from you) that you’ve got to be really, really concerned with gaii marriage, if it’s something that makes you go all Panties In A Bunch every time you hear or read about it, well. to paraphrase the Foxworthy guy, “if you can’t stop thinking about homosexual issues, you may be… a homosexual.”  and i’m sorry for all the haters who are actually straight and in denial that they married a down low or closet case and are only realizing it now. yeah, it sort of sucks. but that’s why sexual honesty and openness are a good thing, for everyone. Michelle Bachmann is crazy because she can’t accept marrying her hubby was a big mistake on her part. as a person who has divorced a poor choice of partner, i’d like her to know: it’s much, much better to just admit you fucked up, get divorced, and move on to people who can truly love you. gawd will forgive you, trust me.

  • amycas

     Stay strong on “if it were”

  • Miss_Beara

    Awww, that is cute. The same thing they are strongly against are the same ones their god is against. I sure can feel the love. 

    Sniffle, I sure teared up at the end of this one. That is love. Not just between the two married women but between a father and his daughter. Parents abandoning their children because they are gay (or atheist) is truly despicable. Believing in bronze age tales over loving their child… I cannot imagine such an ugly thing. 

  • Chakolate

    We don’t really expect there not to be this sort of comment, do we?

    BTW, my stepmom was just like you, very emotional.  Her cow orkers used to say that she cried if a new phone book came out.  I’d say you’re welcome to steal it, but since nobody uses phone books any more, it may not be of much use. 

    My stepmom would totally have cried at this commercial, and she’d be the first one in line to give the brides a hug. 

  • Marco

    I love the guy that writes “Homosexuality is a sexual disorder! Go ahead and try to prove me wrong”

    How about if we just ignore your sorry ass instead? Contempt is the best someone like that can expect.

  • Richard Wade

    We’re alike, Jessica. Any hint of sentimentality, or just a romantic theme in a symphony, and I start crying. An episode of Little House on the Prairie would require two boxes of tissues and a saline IV to replace my fluids. I didn’t cry for this ad, I wept. Not just for the father-daughter tenderness, a huge one for me, but also for the millions of very real families that are torn apart by this terrible bigotry against good people.

  • Anon

     Some ideas are completely irreconcilable.  45 million dollar challenge.  Reconcile capitalism with communism.  Why should a working class ever be beholden to the property class? 

    Some of these disagreements are truly legitimate, mang. 

  • jose

     I think it’s wonderful. Ambiguity-free languages are for computers. People are attractively complicated.

  • Brennin Statistician

     The Bible does not date from the Bronze Age. But don’t let facts get in the way of your vapid atheism!

  • Brennin Statistician

    BIGOT, n. One who is obstinately and zealously attached to an opinion that you do not entertain.

  • Brennin Statistician

     This is what passes for intelligence among internet atheists.

  • P. J. Reed

    Just pretend she said “Iron Age” if it bothers you that much.  You’re not going to convince anybody if the only thing you can disagree with is meaningless hyperbole rather than the actual meaning of the post.

  • TerranRich

    See, but then the problem becomes this: What do I use when I mean “literally” in the sense that something is exact, and not exaggerated? If I say, “I was literally punched in the face,” do I mean “literally” as in somebody actually connected their fist with my skull? Or do I mean “literally” as in “Well, no there was no actual violence, but it almost felt like it”?

    Words have meaning for a reason. If two of those meanings are literally contradicting each other ;) then what is the point of even using the word?

  • Miss_Beara

    “Vapid atheism.”

    Lol. If being against parents that abandon their children if they are “different” from them is being “vapid”… so be it.

  • The Captain

    While the dates of writing of the bible are debated by scholars many of whom place it from the early 1st millennium BCE which is just at the beginning of the iron age, it’s fair to say the stories in the bible are most certainly from an earlier oral tradition. Which would firmly place many of them in the bronze age.

  • John of Indiana

     You’re right. Gawd intended for her to be bred to the biggest, strongest field hand to make more big, strong field hands for massah to sell.

  • John of Indiana


    So we’re off by an Age, it’s *STILL* just a book of faerie tales and boogum stories to scare people into getting in line behind the “priest class”.

  • John of Indiana

     And this is what passes for snappy repartee amongst Intertube Theists. go run to pastor and tell him you need to be cock-punched. Hard.

  • John of Indiana

    That was sweet. I have a daughter, too, and frankly, if it made her happy, I wouldn’t care if she married that box turtle of Santorectum’s.

  • AxeGrrl

    I’m so sorry to hear this, Persephone :(  for you and your mother.

    Although I feel sorry for your mum and what she’s missing, I find it hard to sympathize/empathize ~ because I simply cannot imagine turning away from my child for any reason, let alone a reason that has to do with love.

  • Kevin Smith

    The error here is that she assumes the burden of proof is on everyone else to disprove something she claimed. Since the American Psychiatric Association pointedly does not define homosexuality as a mental disorder these days, I’d say the burden is on her to prove that it is.

  • Kevin Smith

    The idea of “proper” language is silly. Language is a social construct, so the only problem is the use of a word in a way that other people don’t understand. If everybody knows what you’re talking about, there’s no problem except in certain social climbing situations.

  • Sindigo

    The English language has over a million words. Why redefine them? “Clinging” to definitions is vital for clarity of meaning.

  • Sindigo

    What’s wrong with “Couldn’t care less”?

  • David B.

    Comparing words as defined in Samuel Johnson’s 1775 A Dictionary of the English Language with how they are commonly employed today, it is clear that everyone habitually uses far, far more redefinitions of words than are ever ‘defended’ by the grammar nazis of the internet.

    It’s simple hypocrisy. People will talk of surfing the web on their computers, or getting fired from a job, or profit margins, or of something happening by default, and no-one steps up to defend the traditional interpretation of such words, nor argue that the new usage erodes “clarity of meaning.”

  • David B.

    Cleave (verb):
    1. to separate or cut with a tool or sharp instrument,
    2. to stick or hold together and resist separation.

  • Sindigo

    But your examples add definitions to words which do not directly contradict the original definition. That’s the difference and that’s why they don’t erode clarity of meaning. Using “literally” when “figuratively” would be a far more appropriate word does just that.

    I’m all for language change, in fact I studied it as part of an English language course at college. I think that its evolving, chimaeric qualities are what give English its considerable charm. Without this quality, it would be as dead as the language next to your name there but when words are bastardised to mean whatever the user wants how is meaning supposed to communicated?

    One has to draw a line somewhere  else we all start to communicate in the grunts and gestures so familiar to anyone who has ever talked to a teenager, or read many celebrity ramblings on Twitter. There is no need for adults to emulate them though.And for the record, as a designer who is often called upon to correct copy for legibility and appropriate use of language, I am a grammar nazi in meat space too; not just on the internet. ;)

  • David B.

    Quite can mean “not very” or “very”, “dusting” can mean to add or remove dust depending on your job, a variety can be one specific type or a plethora of them, and is a quantum change one that is exceptionally large or small?

    The English language has survived this apocalypse of ambiguity since before you or I was born, it’ll survive “literally.” It is the failure to adapt to change of usage that impedes conversation, the grammar nazis are the problem, not the solution.

  • Tainda

    Awww :(  I will adopt you!

    I love my daughter with every fiber of my being and will NEVER stop

  • Sandra Duffy

    Indeed. I’d figured that one out by the age of 17. Why so many others seem blind to that choice is beyond me.

  • Sindigo

    All true, of course and I suppose we’ll lose the battle on “literally” eventually. 

  • David B.

    Hey, we already use “bad” to mean good, soon telling people their English is bad will be a taken as a compliment.

  • Sindigo

    I think we’ve collectively agreed not to do that anymore since the whole Michael 
    Jackson thing. ;)

  • Holytape

    Which begs the question, why wasn’t the bible around in the bonze age.  They had writing, and you think the word of God, if true, would have been around then. 

  • Holytape

    You need a better dictionary.

  • Mike

     Yeah. There aren’t any atheist misogynists and homophobes.
    No, wait, these theist homophobes prove that everything Religion touches it poisons. It has done no good anywhere ever.

    Logic FTW!

  • Pascale Laviolette

    It’s written in the books they claim are God’s word, dude.  Even if particular Christians aren’t homophobes – they’re still propping up that wack-ass tome.  Otherwise decent people are disowning their OWN CHILDREN for being gay – that is so sad, I can’t even handle it.  Their religion ruined their relationship with their child.

    Sure, there are atheist misogynists and homophobes – but that’s down to their personalities, not their atheism.

  • David B.


  • TerranRich

    And that’s why I never, ever use the word “cleave” in everyday conversation. Not once.

  • Chakolate

     Well put.

  • Deven Kale

     I think it was Christopher Hitchens who said (and I paraphrase here), “Good men do good things, and evil men do evil things, but for good men to do evil things, that requires religion.”

    I think that’s basically the point when somebody says “religion poisons.”

  • Zoë Alex Gavin

    Damn you Jessica! That made me cry…

  • TheExpatriate700

    Aww, why’d you cover up their names? When it comes to homophobes, the best response is always to name and shame. Let’s see how they like it when they open up their inbox to a thousand angry and disgusted e-mails.

  • wmdkitty

    That commercial made me go D’AWWWWWWW!

    The reactions? Not so much, and I wish people would just get over themselves and be happy that someone found love.

  • Queequeg

    Great little Ad.  Religious/homophobic prejudice is especially sad if it comes between a child and her parents.

  •!/OffensivAtheist bismarket

    Do they bother to put up those “God is love” posters outside churches anymore? It’s been a long time since i’ve associated Christianity with anything other than Hate, bigotry & intolerance. OH & money, they like cash too!

  •!/OffensivAtheist bismarket

     Language evolves too, who’da thunk it?

  • ReadsInTrees

     Haha, I’m the same way. Not a single sniffle at my wedding, even when my husband got choked up. But give me the Doctor dying or Aragorn saying, “My friends, you bow to no one…” and there’s tears all over the place.