Monday, February 24, 2014

Oh for goodness sake

I know I don't do this enough, but today I'd like to talk about something good.

I hope this won't put you off.

You come here for some finely-scrubbed vitriol. For rants against injustice, inequality, and man's inhumanity to man. And those are just the posts about advertising. I regularly go off about religion, politics, thinning the herd and shitty neighbors with monster trucks and vicious pit bulls.

But today we're veering off that well-worn path.

Because last week, my old partner John Shirley and I had a unique advertising experience. And when I say unique, of course I mean it was good.

It was better than good.

I won't tell you the name of the agency (NDA and all that stuff) but I will tell you they are in Hollywood. And I hate driving to Hollywood. Between the tourists, the traffic and the omnipresent stench of urine, Hollywood makes Pacoima look good.

We worked long hours. We started at 9 sharp, because the owners of the agency get in at 8. And we stayed well past Final Jeopardy time.

And we did rewrites. Changing direction on a dime and chasing ideas at speeds that would make Usain Bolt jealous.

I didn't even get a full day rate.

So far, it sounds awful, right?

But it wasn't and I'll tell you why.
It was about the work.
The work.
And nothing but the work.

We were dealing with two Creative Directors who have done a boatload of great work. Their names are attached to some of the most recognizable and edgy stuff done in the last decade. To have them embrace our particular form of unconventional humor was flattering.

I may, as someone recently called me, an old fart, but the snow on the roof has not prevented me, and my partner, from cranking out ideas that are worth pursuing.

Moreover, these guys found a way of improving the work and pushing us to walk further out on the plank. Bigger, bolder, ballsier, is their creed and we were more than happy to oblige.

In other words, we had fun. And were laughing from the first cup of coffee in the morning to the first beer at night.

As John's wife so aptly put it, only you two could find a way to get paid to have a 6-day long Play Date.

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