Friday, October 29, 2010

End of an error

You missed the awesomest leaving do EVER last night. The DJ rocked da house.

But today a sombre mood has settled on the agency, as reality of my departure hits my colleagues like a sledgehammer of unhappiness wielded by a burly man of misery.

I may not have been the most popular person at Partners. Or the most talented. Or the least annoying.

But what I’ve always had is spunk. And if there’s one thing the modern agency needs, it’s spunky individuals.

I’m sure that Messrs Andrews and Aldridge are looking at one another right now and wondering where the spunk is going to come from.

Things are just as uncertain for me. I have no idea what the future holds. Apart from death and taxes. And the ridicule of my peers.

But whatever comes my way, I shall face it with the same cowardice and self-loathing with which I’ve faced everything in my career.

I know you can't wait to hear all about it.

P.S. Thanks Chris for the headline. Thanks Rich for the video. Thank you everyone else at Partners for loving and accepting me for who I REALLY am.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

A fitting tribute

It doesn't happen often in the hard-nosed, cut-and-thrust, dog-eat-dog-eat-dog's-dog world of agency life, but just occasionally you really connect with someone.

You discover a common vision. They help you to be the very best at what you do. And, in some small way, you help them to be better too.

That kind of office chemistry is a special and rare thing.

Which makes it all the more upsetting when the powers that be decide that person is deemed surplus to requirements. Over the hill. Redundant.

I'm talking about my friend, Barney.

Barney is a printer here at Partners Andrews Aldridge. Or at least he was, until recently.

For he has printed his last copy doc.

As a tribute, I've created this video of our final moments together, set to James Blunt's stirring vocals.

Perhaps you've had someone like Barney in your life? A stapler. A ring binder. A laminator. If so, this video is for you.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Real Men Write Resignation Letters

The walls of Partners Andrews Aldridge are resounding to all manner of unseemly sobbing and wailing today, as news reaches the girls in account management that the agency's most manly hunk of throbbing masculinity is leaving.

That’s right, I’ve decided to go freelance.

Given the way the UK economy is stuttering along like an Austin Allegro on a cold Winter’s morning, and the fact I’m soon to be flattened by the financial haymaker of having a second child, I thought this would be a super time to cast aside all financial stability.

As you’d expect, everyone here at Partners is distraught at my departure. Although I must admit they’ve managed to mask their disappointment extremely well.

My art director in particular has been so supportive about the whole thing. Right from the moment I first floated the idea he’s been incredibly enthusiastic and helpful.

He's left articles on my desk about how great freelancing is. He even started posting encouraging motivational notes, like ‘Who dares wins!’ and ‘Be all you can be!’

Equally, my CD has tackled the toughest brief of his life with a passion bordering on relish. These are enormous shoes he has to fill. Shoes so big, they could almost be described as clown shoes. And yet, the way his eyes light up when he talks about ‘getting the upgrade’ is a sign of a man unfazed by the gargantuan nature of the task.

Now, you might be wondering why I’d leave a brilliant creative place like Partners. These are some reasons why I’m going freelance:

• I want to meet lots more people and experience loads of different stuff.
• It’s good to be scared. Sometimes.
• It feels like the right time in my career to do this.
• I believe I can fly. I believe I can touch the sky.
• If I don't get any work, I might finally get around to painting Baby RMWLC’s room.

This has never been a very comment-y type blog. Mainly because no one cares enough to comment. But this seems like a good topic to collect your thoughts on.

So tell me blogosphere, how should one behave on freelance? How do I stay employed? And what’s the etiquette with eating the staff biscuits?

And by the way Yes, leaving was my idea and No I wasn’t fired, thank you very much.

P.S. Why not have a look at and tell me what you think of my work? Because I really could give the first one about your opinion.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Awesome 80s ads

If you're not interested in watching me making a right benny of myself on national TV, you might prefer to watch the adbreak.

Some real classics here.

Those teeth. I still have nightmares about those teeth.

Dave Mance, child superstar

In the olden days, there was no X-Factor.

During these dark pre-Cowell years, people were instead served up dodgy quiz shows hosted by middle-aged men in velour sweaters.

One such show, called Child's Play, featured megastar contestants such as Christopher Biggins, Jeremy Beadle, Lulu and Suzi Quatro, along with nauseatingly cute children.

The premise of the show was that the aforementioned cute kids would describe a word, but without saying it. The contestants then had to guess the word.

With hilarious consequences.

You won't be at all surprised to hear I was one of those cute kids.

Even at that young age, I was pretty ‘gifted’. As a result, they rarely featured me in the main part of the show. Instead, I was confined to the little bit before the ad breaks, known as the 'this is what happens when the kid's a bit simple' slot.

To put it bluntly, I was a figure of fun. To six million viewers.

This week I have finally had the celluloid footage converted to electro-bytes and stuck it on YouTube.

I realise there’s no reason why you should find these clips remotely interesting but I’m sticking it up here anyway.

Enjoy! (Or don’t, I don’t care.)

To explain, I’d seen a model of a baby in the womb and when I asked my dad what the umbilical cord was, he said, “That’s how they eat”. Thanks for that, Dad.