Monday, April 30, 2012

How to be popular (with the right people)

You may have heard this popular maxim floating around the corridors of your agency:

“Work hard and be nice to people”


This is the most laughable myth since the Loch Ness monster. Or the female G-spot. Or the female orgasm.

Everyone knows that if you want to get on in this world, you need to kiss butt, bully, cheat, connive, steal, murder, commit tax fraud and commit grand larceny.

Which is one of the reasons freelancing is so tricky. Every time you arrive at a new place, you have to figure out who’s who.

How else can you know whose butt to kiss and whose butt to bully? Or commit grand larceny against?

If you’re not careful, you can spend far too much time sucking up to people who turn out to be unimportant.

I’ve wasted whole precious minutes of my life being nice to people, only to discover there was no material benefit in it for me.

Other times I’ve elbowed someone aside or thrown scalding hot tea in their face to stop them taking the last biscuit, only to discover they are in fact a ‘somebody’.

To be honest, I haven’t really found a short cut to this conundrum as yet.

Is the answer making people wear badges which display their job title? Or uniforms which signify rank?

We need to find a solution soon people because I'm doing a lot of unnecessary smiling at strangers at the moment and my face is starting to hurt.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

MFEST. The music festival for people who've given up on life.

It can't be. Can it?

They wouldn't, would they?

Of course they would.

MFEST. The music festival brought to you by Morrisons supermarket.

That's right, MFEST. Proof, were it needed, that this is the END OF DAYS.



Every time you say it, another piece of your soul dies.

And it's brought to us by Morrisons, those trusted purveyors of the finer things in life.

So far, the line-up includes such illustrious names as The Levellers, Texas, Bob Geldof and Inspiral Carpets.

Acts that wouldn’t look out of place in the ‘Reduced to clear’ section of any supermarket.

Headliners, The Levellers. To be fair, even in their heyday they didn't look great.

“MFEST will be a unique addition to the festival market with not only a glittering array of entertainment for all ages, but a brand new, reinterpretation of festival food”
- droned a corporate flunkey who long ago made a deal with the devil, exchanging his soul for a tin of Morrisons spam and some money-off vouchers.

Can brands just take everything that is cool about life and churn out their own soulless versions?

What next? The TESCO Value Holiday? The Walmart Wedding? Your first love, brought to you by McDonalds?
“We are incredibly excited to be the lead sponsor with such an incredible line-up planned and thrilled that our food will be keeping the crowds going at the inaugural MFEST experience."
Come, friendly bombs and fall on MFEST.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

My first movie tagline

Just came across this post in Adweek about great movie taglines.

I often look at movie posters and wonder if I could do better (FACT: I could).

Then it got me wondering, who writes movie taglines? The answer, not surprisingly, is copywriters

I liked the movie-tagline-writer guy's description of the creative process as so methodical (even though the big doofus can't pronounce maths correctly).
After familiarizing himself with the plot and theme, Byers jots down words associated with the title. He often enlists the help of, a website that generates word lists based on root, prefix, and tone. From there, he uses to find stock phrases and then brainstorms ways in which they might be twisted. “Sometimes it works out just like math,” he says.
I know what you’re thinking. There’s a site full of clichés?! Why didn’t someone tell me about this years ago? I could have saved myself literally hours of lazy thinking.

Anyway, here are my favouritest ever movie taglines.

Jaws 2
Just when you thought it was safe to go back into the water.

Dumb and Dumber
For Harry and Lloyd, every day is a no-brainer.

The Big Lebowski
Her life was in their hands. Now her toe is in the mail.

The Silent Rage
Science created him. Now Chuck Norris must destroy him.

He was dead…but he got better.

(For anyone who hasn’t seen Crank, it’s basically the greatest movie ever. It may even be the best Jason Stratham movie ever. I don’t want to give away too much but basically, he has been poisoned and must keep his adrenaline flowing or he’ll die. That's right.)

All this movie-tagline research inspired me, so I thought I’d have a go at writing one of my own. I came up with this:

127 Hours
Think of your worst owie ever. This one is much worse.

Pretty good, huh?

(By the way, if you haven't seen 127 Hours, don't bother. Let's just say that whoever came up with the concept has a somewhat overactive imagination.)

If you can think of your own movie tagline that’s even better, put it in the comments.

Actually if you’re reading this at all, put something in the comments. I’m kind of wondering if anyone still reads this blog.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

My trip to the museum

I had a nice weekend, not that any of you bothered to ask.

It started well, with this lovely ‘save the date’ thingey from our upstairs neighbours. (They knew I’d KICK OFF if I didn’t get an invite.)

Next, Family RMWLC went on a SPECIAL DAY OUT to the London Transport Museum. It’s got buses and trains and stuff.

**Only bother reading on if you’ve got kids or are really bored. Actually, only bother reading if you've got kids AND are really bored. And you have some weird obsession with funny handles on trains.**

I enjoyed watching my children play with a video installation, one delighted and the other bewildered.

We explored the history of the tube train handle. Who knew you could get Creme Egg ones?

Then I became tired and irritable and had to sit down and have something to eat.

They also gave my eldest this snazzy activity book.

It’s nicely done, eh?

As well as the complimentary moustache and a pop-up horse complete with its own saddle and horsey turd, you could create your own Abram Games poster.

I did a rather nice duck.

And mini RMWLC did an even better robot. 

What a show-off.

So I guess the lesson of the day is that, in this age of digibytes and googletubes, some nice things are still made of paper.

All in all, I'd give the museum 6.5 out of 10 (it lost half a point on account of the fact the Earl Grey tea wasn't Twinings).

It’s £13 for adults but that’s an annual pass so you can go back again and again to stare at the Crème Egg tube handle. Which is good value.

Next time let’s go together, okay?

Monday, April 2, 2012

Philistines with paintbrushes

If you like both ads and bridges, brought together in one handy package, then you'll LOVE the Ferodo Bridge. As you're well aware, I blogged about it ages ago.

And if you love ads and bridges, then you’ll be shocked and appalled at THIS.

That’s right. In what’s clearly an attack on me and all readers of this blog, somebody – or rather, some MONSTER – has literally painted over my happiness.

I was understandably tearful when I came into work. And I've spent most of the day sobbing at my desk.

As yet no one has asked why I’m upset so I thought I’d share my distress with you all.

I shall be bound naked to this bridge in protest from about 7pm today (or whenever I get off work).

Please drop by if you want to join me. Or if you just want to see me naked.