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Posts Tagged ‘So Gallic It’s A Joke’

Tuesday, 26th June 2007

I am not a nervous flier. It’s just as well given how much of it I seem to be doing.

However, things that you don’t want to see on the runway (apart from Osama Bin Laden) include a ‘plane the size of the average kitchen, which is destined to fly you to Liverpool.

Liverpool is a whole new discussion, for a whole new entry – but let’s just say that my entry into the city that Boris impaled so clearly was not tinted with a roseate hue by my means of entry.

Not only was the ‘plane tiny, it looked as I imagined an aeroplane constructed out of Morphy Richards hairdriers might look. Hairdriers from the ‘70s, to be precise.

Anyway, clearly we got there (“we” being me and So Gallic It’s A Joke Account Guy) and back, so my misgivings were misplaced. And it has to be said that walking down that little flight of steps onto the runway DOES make you feel like a film star, or, perhaps I should say, a Beatle.

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Saturday, 14th July 2007

I’m going to Madrid – and I’m very excited.

Originally, I was going at the end of the week, but (given that these things always change and the fact that Impossibly Gallic Account Guy seems to think I am blessed with the gift of telepathy) this plan has changed more than most and I am now leaving on Sunday evening, and returning on Tuesday evening.

I am most excited about being able to get to The Prado – though apparently it’s shut on Monday, but I asked Matey Planning Director whether she knew the city at all (it’s my first time).

“Madrid? Amazing. Dirt cheap Zara and incredible doughnuts and hot chocolate.”

I loved that description: it’s probably a truer representation of how one remembers great cities. Not “the splendour of the Uffizi” so much as “that amazing pizza”, not “the non-stop energy of New York” so much as “the sales at Lord & Taylor and Barney’s – and the prices in the Apple store”.

So: I’m still thinking that I need to fill up on Goya and Velasquez – but I daresay that there will be a hot chocolate experience as well.

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Tuesday, 28th August 2007

Oh, the meeting that never ends!

My GOD, but today managed the double whammy of being both unspeakably tedious and unspeakably infuriating. I was with So Gallic It’s Laughable Account Guy and Unspeakably Chic Creative Guy, and twelve or so people from around the world. And two people from Another Agency. Now: I have thought for a long time that this other Agency was doing shit work – and today was further evidence of that. So bad was their work, both strategically and creatively that I was reminded of a true story (that I hope I haven’t already committed to these pages), but which remains my professional Shibboleth and fear…

In a previous Agency,  a Very Important Planner was asked to define the “essence” of Nescafe: the one, instantly understandable and exciting definition of what that famous international coffee brand stood for and defined. After a couple of months, and a LOT of money spent, he came back with his answer: with due process, ceremony and drama he unveiled what the great coffee brand stood for. “Coffee-ness”. No word of a lie, this is what that great, lauded man came up with. And even worse, no-one stood up and shouted “Coffee-ness? Get FUCKED!” Nor did they do that when (and I swear I’m not joking), at the same agency, when asked to define the essence of the Bacardi Rum brand (maybe now you’re beginning to get a picture of what my job is like…) he presented, with solemn sagacity the answer “Bacardi-ness”.

I almost admired his chutzpah – but then I realised that it was purely and simply shit, and it made me really embarrassed to work in the same business. 

And that is (more or less) how felt about the two jokers I watched today: ashamed to be working in the same industry as them (albeit at an agency that has beaten theirs on every measure since I’ve joined it). But – as with the story above – no-one called them on it. No-one said: your strategy is a litany of obviousness and your creative work feels like it was created by children with a couple of hours off from doing hand-painting. When I think of how hard I (and the people I work with) work on making things watertight and interesting and exciting, I feel both baffled and angry that the same Client who accepts and praises our work, admits Another Agency’s work with a similar level of approval and appetite. 

So: the disillusionment with half the job grows…

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Saturday, 1st September 2007

They have been brewing for some weeks, but now, I think that shouty crackers are inevitable with So Gallic It’s Laughable Account Guy.

He has been twatting me around for too long: mis-briefing behind my back, getting work that wasn’t on brief back and (because he is not the most strategic badger in the set) presenting it to Exasperated Sounding English Client, who would then point out that the work was a) Off Strategy b) Shit.

I have a feeling that he is trying to pull a fast one on Monday, as everyone but me is due in Madrid. If I find this to be the case, then I shall do such things as – though I know not yet what they be – shall be the very terror of the earth, and (to quote) the fucker will RUE the day.

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Wednesday, 5th September 2007

So, the long-anticipated shouty crackers with So Gallic It’s Laughable Account Guy happened last night. And I did myself FULL justice.

To date, I have been too polite, too evasive and (basically) too English to have a proper, no holds barred session. Last night, I did not have that problem. I won’t repeat it here: suffice to say that the call lasted for forty minutes and for thirty of those minutes, I was the one talking.

We are now on slightly over-formal “After you.” “No, after you.” type behaviour, which is odd, but a distinct improvement on where we were (me in the dark and enraged, him in a hotel somewhere, failing to do my job).

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Saturday, 15th September 2007

Somethings are so obvious that one feels a little crass writing them down, nevertheless, it may as well be recorded here that I do not like the French (PRETTY much without exception) – and no doubt this exacerbates my loathing for So Gallic It’s Laughable Account Guy…

But, OH! How my hatred of him has escalated to Olympian heights, having heard what I have heard, seen what I have seen (to come over all Ophelia about it for a second) over this recent Bangkok trip. This was a tale, ladies and gentlemen of wool pulled over my unblinking hazel eyes; of smoke applied to the clearest of mirrors; and of the little dye-haired toad bullshitting as though it was what kept his heart pumping.

On Monday, I go to Madrid to work with him for four days. There will be an atmosphere that the most accomplished cineaste would be proud to conjure.

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