Microsoft ad's 'average consumer' is an actress

Ad star Lauren isn't told, when she applies for the gig on Craigslist, that she might be shooting a Microsoft ad. What a break for her acting career.

Lauren, the star of Microsoft's new TV ad, the one who implies that Macs are twice as expensive as PCs, is fresh-faced and excitable.

According to the company, she was recruited on Craigslist, a site many people turn to when looking for one sort of person or another.

The Craigslist ad, Microsoft said, sought potential participants in a piece of market research about laptop-purchasing decisions.

Somehow, Lauren's bright, breezy delivery and almost equally bright-green scarf (does anyone else think that her scarf and blue coat said, "hey, two of Microsoft's colors"?) carried the day and made her a star.

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This is lovely for someone who earns her money as an office manager. Oh, and I almost forgot, the Associated Press reports that she's also an actress.

I think that Lauren has a fine career ahead of her. Anyone who can spontaneously come up with a line such as, "I'm just not cool enough to be a Mac person," when she thinks that she's only participating in a market research movie, clearly has a future in many different genres.

Perhaps I am still pining for the Jerry and Bill Roadshow, which I believe was one of the most underrated campaigns of the last few years. Here was Bill Gates, not in any way an actor, producing a transformational and, frankly, brilliant performance, especially in the second film.

So perhaps I just wanted a little persuasive authenticity to make me think about buying a PC.

Then again, I've been made to watch a lot of reality TV over the last few years (these kind of consumer-performed TV ads are nothing more than reality TV).

I've also read all of Steve Wozniak's conspiratorial e-mails about how these shows are produced, so perhaps I'm one of the few hundred, or perhaps a smidgen more, who believe that the last episode of "The Bachelor" was, just like the "I'm just not cool enough" line, scripted.

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