Monday, August 15, 2016

Leaving the Nest , Part Two

Last year at this time I was a mess.

Some of you might recall that I had taken my family for a Mexican vacation. Whisked them 4000 miles away to the Yucatan Peninsula, where we had hoped to spend 8 glorious days on the beach at a hotel ironically called The Beach.

Sadly, the gods of Sargasso decided they too would park themselves on the powdery sands of Tulum and brought with them enough smelly, slimy seaweed to blanket half of Canada.

I spent the entire week drowning my sorrows in Mojitos. Which I would've done anyway but the alcohol went a long way to make me forget about the otherwise inescapable stench.

Simultaneously, I was also dealing with one of my neighbors, who was raising the loudest barking dog on the planet. Seriously, jet-engine loud.

All compounded by the fact that my youngest daughter was about to enter the University of Colorado for her freshman year, leaving my wife and I at home to deal with the emotional uncertainties of an Empty Nest.

We're over that hump now.

But I can't help noticing on social media that many of my friends and colleagues are about to cross that same heartbreaking threshold. It's so commonplace that even some advertisers are pivoting on the theme.

In just 90 seconds, Michelin does a remarkably good job at capturing the sentiment. And unlike other long form ads, there is no stupefying contortion of thought at the end to link the premise to the product.

This is organic. And small. And truthful.

Full disclosure: it was produced by my alma mater, TBWA Chiat/Day.

More full disclosure: I'm not polishing their rims because I'm looking for any freelance work, lately I'm been getting out of bed at 5 AM just to stay ahead of my current workload.

To the parents out there who will soon be saying goodbye, I offer my sympathy. It is gut wrenching. Heart crushing. And soul sucking. Not unlike working on the Pizza Hut account.

But with the kids away at college it gets better. The house gets cleaner. Toilets get flushed. And the expensive imported roquefort blue cheese gets properly wrapped up and stored in the crisper so it doesn't become a $19 glob of inedible spoiled milk curd.

It also gets different with the passage of time.

Abby: Dad, I'm going back to Boulder can you take me to the airport?

Me: Get yourself an Uber.

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