My brain’s been deeply engaged lately. Been thinking. Been wondering about whether I am contributing to something meaningful to the world via my career. Not really sure that ‘making milkshake worlds’ or creating the Alcoholics Of Tomorrow via ambassador programs is ever going to be the kind of thing my grandkids will brag about. Basically, I (and by I, I mean my personal brand) has been feeling a bit average.
I recently got told about the Heart Transplant Museum in Cape Town, where you can go and see life-like wax models of the first heart-transplant, and dress up like a doctor and get goosebumps at ‘following in the footsteps of greatness’.
This beautiful picture inspired me to read up about Chris Barnard on wikipedia, and about all his great achievements and how he conquered the world even though he lives on the tip of Africa and was Afrikaans. You know how black people in this country say they only find achievements inspiring if it’s done by a black person, and hence flip out about not enough black people in top positions? Well I’m the same. I can only be inspired by great things if they’re done by an Afrikaans person (via narrow-minded-excuse-making), even though I barely speak Afrikaans. But I don’t have to since ‘it’s in my blood’. Think of me as your ‘Good-Girl War-Veteran’. kisses MK xxx.
What got me all fuzzed up about him was the fact that he did most of his heart transplants free of charge, which indicates a good balance on his personal brand between narcissistic hot Doctor guy and altruist-for-the-people. Which made me realize that’s what’s missing from my personal brand – the meaning that comes from convincing other people you care about deep issues, like teen pregnancy / whether street kids have enough glue / saving the environment / pretending to push the whales back in the sea when they just want to be left alone to die.
So was thinking about adopting a meaningful cause that I can champion with my influence and passion, a cause about which I can ‘generate awareness’ and ‘conceptualise PR’ which leads to ‘word-of-mouth buzz marketing and viral activational engagements’. Some of the causes I’ve been considering include:
1. Advertisements have rights too, ie. Writing up a ‘constitution’ for advertisements that includes ‘ads have the right to shelter’ and then protesting when a billboard that has not been printed with UV-resistant ink is placed in an open area without cover. People seem to like protesting here. Probably because most of our people have ‘natural rhythm’ and tapping into that kind of momentum would mean half the work is done, ie. Tapping into the long-tailing trend and catching a ride on the collaboration fad wave.
2. Affirmative Action for the oppressed, ie. All the creatives who have had their work discriminated against by clients should be given a free lunch, maybe free medical aid (because of all the mental abortions they have had to endure), and all the top jobs in government. Really think that government would have a great image if they hired us to ‘create a vibe’ in the office, or whatever. Could maybe take a page out of Peet Pienaar’s book (but not the same book he keeps designing over and over and giving a new name to a la Afro, Bruce Lee, etc) and leave trails of boerewors lying around parliament, like the ones Peet left lying around at Jupiter (miss u Jupiter).
3. Client tax. Basically the client pays tax on all the changes they make to a finished, cohesive concept. So the more you strip away in favour of budget (via the recession / general ignorance of the merit of having a concept in your advertising), the more tax you pay on a concept. The tax goes towards supplying creatives with ‘soul deposits’, since stripping concepts takes chunks out of the soul of the creative, like a shark in a frenzy. This might be too abstract however. Not sure whether a currency needs to be set up for ‘soul deposits’. Not sure what would be a happy medium for everyone, since people are so diverse. Maybe the currency can be butternut soup, which is quite neutral. Or heroine, since even if you don’t actively like it now, you probably will like it once you try it. Or maybe something meaningful, like a Louis Vuitton handbag. Basically once you’ve had 10 ideas stripped down to nothing you have earned 1 handbag. Works for me.
Green advertising. This is where we only print in green to create awareness around the fact that we are aware of the environment, and how bad we feel when we print out 100 page PDFs because it’s ‘easier than flicking between screens’. This is really just first-phase at the moment.
That’s where I’ve got up to so far. Let me know if you have a cause you’d like me to champion. I am your humble servant, at your service, here to serve you in any way that I can in a humble fashion. Just want y’ulle to see me as DEEP as well as shallow.