Watch Me Entertain Myself!

Sacha Guitry once said, "You can pretend to be serious, but you can't pretend to be witty." Oh yes, I'm the great pretender.
(pilot episode: 20 January 2004)

Monday, November 19, 2007


We advertising folks are a deranged lot. We agree to participate in a pitch* even thought the deadline is tighter than two lizards copulating. (*What’s a pitch? That’s when agencies scramble amongst themselves to try and impress clients that they can do the impossible with their brands within the numerous constraints imposed on them.) We spend ten days holed up in a room that’s a freezer by day and sauna by night, trying to generate middling to maddening to magnificent ideas. We get intimate with the various plastic utensils, packaging disciplines and erratic delivery response times of different fastfood companies. We are fed variations of Pinoy, Chinese and junk food. (I fear our accounts people have a premise that the more MSG in our system, the more brilliant our output will be. Totally false, but we in Creatives are not about to correct them any time soon.) We bend over backwards and forwards, grappling with what the target market wants versus what client wants. We spend seven straight days going home after midnight. And all throughout we wonder if all this effort will not be wasted on a client who may just end up stealing our ideas from us.

Then we don coordinated costumes, make massive mock-ups, and rely on caffeine and adrenaline to prop us up while presenting at 9 on a Monday morning. After that, we hike off to a tres-chic resto like People’s Palace, stuff ourselves silly with spicy dishes, and congratulate ourselves for a job well done. And we oh so giddily replay the high points of the presentation blow-by-blow, anecdote by anecdote. And the whole week that was is brushed gently to one side.

The only other creatures who behave the same way are theater folks. No wonder a lot of us straddle both worlds.


Anonymous said...

i couldn't have said better. hina-hi-jack namin yung north park at teriyaki grill sa kabilang kalsada gabi-gabi 2 weeks ago!

cant_u_read said...

diba ang sarap? advertising (and theater, for that matter) is survival of the fittest, the wittiest, and the most poised under pressure.

eon said...

parang thesis ah. ang problem lang in this case, ad infinitum nyo syang gagawin.

in fairness, bukas naman starbucks ps 24x7.

joelmcvie said...

@EON: Kapatid, hindi kaya ng budget na gabi-gabi ay magpa-Starbucks. =)

Quentin X said...

And here I am complaining that my 10-hour days and 44-hour weeks are too much. I wish I have as much imagination as you guys do.