Before Royal Caribbean lost its mind and created the ‘Nation of Why Not" (which seems like a rip-off of Mad Magazine’s Alfred E. Neuman’s "What Me Worry?"), the cruise line used a snappy song called "Lust for Life" as part of its Get Out There! marketing campaign.
You remember the video – passengers hiking on a glacier, dog sledding and kayaking, while a upbeat tune with a heavy base blared out the refrain Lust for Life! Take a look and listen:
But few people (except those Iggy Pop fans like me) knew what the song was really about – booze, drug addiction, a dead heroin dealer, and sex. Here is a portion of the lyrics:
Here comes Johnny Yen again
With the liquor and drugs
And the flesh machine
He’s gonna do another striptease
Hey man where’d you get
That lotion? I been hurting
Since I bought the gimmick
About something called love
Yeah something called love
That’s like hypnotizing chickens
Well I am just a modern guy
Of course I’ve had it in the ear before
‘Cause of a lust for life
‘Cause of a lust for life . . .
Both of my boys have Iggy Pop loaded on their iPods. They used to break out in laughter when they heard this commercial. They’d say "hey Dad, isn’t that the cruise line you sue all of the time? Why is Iggy Pop singing for them?" "Yes," I would tease them. "Royal Caribbean’s CEO Richard Fain may seem like a Tony Bennett or Perry Como fan, but he secretly loves Iggy Pop!" I would tell my kids.
Take a minute and listen to Iggy’s original version of "Lust for Life" back in 1977 ( when I was a freshman in college):
Royal Caribbean, Iggy Pop, drugs, booze and sex – strange bedfellows in the weird world of cruising . . .