Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Glory Days

Unable to resist the Brian Williams Meme-wagon, last week I posted this on my FaceBook page.

As you can see it appears Brian Williams has claimed credit for writing and designing an old billboard John Shirley and I did way back when.

As I was trying to find a picture that could be appropriately doctored, I ran across a 1998 article in Ad Age magazine: Ten Reasons Why TBWA/Chiat/Day is Creativity's Agency of the Year.

I'm a self-admitted narcissist. I'm usually pretty good at sniffing out digital ink, particularly when it mentions my name. As a freelancer fighting the debilitating effects of age and the uncontrollable growth of ear hair, I have to be.

But, I had never seen this article before.

Which is probably a good thing, because now I need a 5 gallon tub of lube just to get my head through the front door of my house.

If you have a copy of Bruce Springsteen's Born in the USA album, now would be a good time to cue up "Glory Days."

You may not be able to access the article because of Ad Age's crazy subscription policy, they literally want people to pay for the privilege of reading. What kind of nonsense is that? Writers don't need money.

So I've taken the liberty of excerpting the best parts for you.

I get called a lot of names.

Self Righteous Prick.

And that's just from my immediate family. But I don't think there's any higher honor than being dubbed a "solid veteran." Solid is a great compliment. It indicates, for better or for worse, that I am dependable, stalwart and worthy of trust. That's gold for a freelancer. Hell, I might even add that to my linkedin page.

Ad Age also said this:

I'm not sure we changed the network approach to advertising. Or anything else for that matter.

They still churn out the same mindless bullshit. And they're still stuck in their old ways. But considering all the instances in this business where I was unfairly denied credit, I'll take it where I can get it.

Thank you very much.

Of course all good things come to an end. And we, Chiat, did not follow up the glory of 1997 and 1998 with a repeat performance in 1999. The beginnings of a dynasty ended.

What happened, you might ask?

I don't know. Perhaps I'll crack open up a new bottle of Beefeaters Gin, some lemon juice, some simple syrup and a tall glass of ice and think about it.

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