Calendar 2001 was a tough year for the auto industry, so it helps to recall it with a bit of levity. At a Detroit auto show press conference, interior supplier Johnson Controls Inc. shows its own version of the popular monster.com commercial from last year.

The black-and-white television spot included tightly cropped images of children talking about the harsh realities of the job market. “I want to be forced into early retirement,” one young boy deadpans.

JCI offered its own light-hearted take of the spot, with youngsters talking about the harsh realities in the supplier world. “I want to work for a Tier 1 supplier and get paid less than I did a year ago,” one child says. “I want to be an executive for a Tier 1 supplier and lead my company into Chapter 11 bankruptcy,” says another. The video clip ends with: “2002 — There's a better automotive year out there.”

Rande Somma, JCI North American automotive president, says suppliers can't lower their standards because of the slow market. “It's business as usual for us,” he says.