Tag Archives: review

wish i could stay in hospital 4 eva

Why living at Medi-Clinic Cape Town is better than living in my (very rad, but let’s face it, not nearly as service-orientated) flat:

– they gave me my own private room with a view of the city and an en-suite bathroom

– people kept asking me ‘how i was’ and whether i ‘need anything’ and fluffing up my pillows

– they brought me food and drink when I wanted it and rolled me around on a bed

Like, the best! I could get used to that. Also super pleased with my brain implant, which now allows me to ‘Blog Just By Thinking’ (BJBT). Which is exactly what I’m doing right. now. While you let that wash over you, do spare a moment for a LOL-filled interview with Our Lady Gaga, who talks about monsters, playgirls and how her sex does NOT distract from her music. LOVE the purple horn hair. Want it. Can someone hook me up? <your ad here>

friday night in the city

had a good Friday night. started off at the SA Blog Awards at Chevelle in Harrington Street. it was mad hot and sweaty but enjoyable no less. saw thecopyninja there, his blog, Pleasefindthis, won Best Photographic Blog. we clapped loudly, clutching out vitamin waters. 2oceansvibe won pretty much every other category. and then i got hit in the head by a flying t-shirt. good times.

Thecopyninja accepts his award.

Thecopyninja accepts his award.

then i wormed my way through the throngs of bitches in thongs in the VIP section to Seth from 2oceansvibe, and proceeded to have the following conversation with him:

Me: Hi, my name’s Alex. I just want to say well done on winning everything and to thank you for adding me to your blog roll – that’s nice of you.

Seth: Oh, what’s your blog called?

Me: MyBrandedLife.com.

Seth: Oh yes, I like your blog. You write about your life as a copywriter, and your cat and stuff. Very funny.

Me: Thanks. It’s not my cat.

Seth: I loved what they said in the speech.

Me: What? Oh when you won that award and you didn’t know what it was for?

Seth: Oh did they?

And then it got too confusing and I had to ran away. But not before I got a photo:

Seth and me, confusing each other.

Seth and me, confusing each other while the Rat King looks on.

Then Rei, thecopyninja and I went through to Kink for Jen’s birthday. There were cupcakes.



Cuan and Rob.

Cuan and Rob.



There was also a disgruntled neighbour who kept throwing eggs over the wall to protest how fun our party was. Some people … (it was 10pm). After getting egg on my foot AND getting hit in the face by a flying t-shirt, it was time to leave. But not before i took a picture of myself in the Kink bathrooms, which are covered in ‘planned graffiti’ which says things like ‘Take me from behind’. Mm. Happy Times y’all.



Design indaba. It was cool.

Loved Design Indaba, even though our traffic managers are in their ‘experimenting with heroine’ phase and scheduled us on Massive Intense Campaign throughout the duration of it. It meant we had to screech across the city and work late a lot. But whatever.

Tried to provide ‘live twitter coverage’ but it didn’t really work because my battery died (iPhone tut tut) plus I’m just not altruistic enough to follow through with that sort of thing.

Speakers I loved were Adams Morioka because they like making design that makes people happy and they don’t take themselves too seriously. Also liked all the uber nano-genetic-bio-tech that Dunne and Raby presented. Didn’t they just make you realize that design is on this whole other level in the EU? Last time I checked the only ‘tech’ you get in design school in this country is CapeTech.

Sigh. Wish I could’ve grown myself a new pair of barcode-reading, cancer-sniffing breasts / arms / ears at college.

Pleasant surprise was Keith Rose. Wish he was my dad so he could give me advice on my digi home movies. Had to watch him carefully as he is also in Creative Circle of Fame and I only have 5 months before I turn 26 which is when I need to be inducted into CCHF. Everyone clapped and got all teary when they showed the elephant IBM ad (back then it was ISM?) and the Dunlop staffie. I personally sobbed into my La Senza bra (it was stuffed in my bag because is too uncomfortable to wear).

Brace yourself.

Brace yourself.

Then the BMW mouse-on-the-steering-wheel ad came on and nobody knew quite what to do so they gave it a standing ovation. Warcrime. Really. Over it.

Also liked Li Edelkoort. I felt like one of her minions when she said Grey-everything, and then played a video about people wearing grey from head-to-toe, as I was wearing grey from head-to-toe. Guess it’s a good thing. Guess I’ve still got my ‘early adopter edge’.

3 ya Li. Wanted to run up and touch her to get some of her special dust.

❤ ya Li. Wanted to run up and touch her to get some of her 'special dust'.

Marian Bantjes also very cool. Like her doodle vibe.

Spent half of Friday frothing at the mouth in anticipation of Javier Mariscal. “Oh you HAVE to see him,” they said. “His last talk was so amazing it made me cry,” they said. He made us wait 45 mins while he constructed a rocket launcher on stage, and proceeded to babble like a madman with a bad case of crack-throat when he finally got up to speak. Was mortified. Kept making eyes at Mallix as if to say “Do you know what’s going on / do you have any valium?” Mallix fed me sweets to shut me up and then I passed out due to sugar low and woke up when the screen was flashing all funny colours. Camera kept switching back to 2 weird little characters who spoke with crack throat. He then finished his talk with some cracked out Freddie Mercury performance, and started shrieking the names of all the other speakers on stage, for no particular reason. Just for fun. The best part of his talk was when he pinned the Anglo Platinum Pin presented to him to his crotch. F-ing designers.

Raving lunatic. I missed the Oprah birthday special for this man.

Raving lunatic. I missed the Oprah birthday special for this man.

But, the star of Design Indaba was undeniably Nobumichi Tosa, a Japanese engineer / designer who makes ‘nonsense machines’, such as a machine that pops ‘all the bubble wrap in a sheet of bubble wrap at once’. For reals. Check out his site, his work truly was mindblowing. He’s also invented a singing robot (creepy in a rad way) and a whole bunch of weird musical instruments, all based on a simple knocker. I also loved his fish power cable, and his funny mask thing, and his wing-knockers, which he wore on stage. Mind.Blowing.

Mad, but in a good, interesting way. Take notes, Mariscal.

Mad, but in a good, interesting way. Take notes, Mariscal.

busy. like a person that has too much to do and no laptop to take it all home and do it on.

Ever feel like your To do list is laughing at you?

Ever feel like your 'To do list' is laughing at you?

still adjusting to the madness that is the beginning of the year.

what’s on my plate that’s stopping me from filling your RSS feeds with ramblings about brands, mostly my personal one? many things. i’ll write you a list:

1. Finding a new home. Flat-hunting in Cape Town is nothing short of a soul-destroying experience. I do believe i have found a haven of a nest though, and i’ll speak more about it once i’ve signed the lease.

2. Work. Believe it or not, i don’t only swan around picking up my bags of free stuff all day. Some of the people who give me free stuff expect me to work for them. And some of the people who don’t give me free stuff expect me to work for them, too. I am not yet my own economy. Not just yet.

3. Grooming the Llama out back. This takes up a lot of time. Llamas like their fur, they don’t like to be brushed, dampened or sheared. But duties are duties, I guess.

They know whats coming.

They know what's coming.

4. Looking for a new camera. My old camera was delightful little Ixus. Now, there are so many Ixuses (Ixii?) to choose from that I’m feeling a little stumped. Canon, I have been your loyal customer for years now. You want to send me a sample of your wares? My life is a testament to your products. Just keep reading. You’ll see.

5. Spending all my gift vouchers. This Christmas, I got R200 000 worth of gift vouchers for an assortment of stores / brands / spas / restaurants. As you can imagine, it’s taken a bit of time to work my way through them all. So far my bounty includes: 6 handbags (Prada, Guess – crass i know, but it’s one of their less crass ones and hey, it ain’t my money – , 9 West, Mr Price temps, a Big Blue special), 3 pairs of jeans (Paige, Seven, Diesel-Adidas colabs), 3 x perfumes (Michael Kors, D&G, Prada), 1 x LV Speedy (why not?), a LOT of books, 2 x day treatments at the Westin / Sheraton hotels, 3 x sunglasses (Spitfire still the only shapes i like apart from the big square Diors i found), iPhone, iPod (shuffle, for running), running shoes (New Balance babies)… and that’s it so far. think i have just over R150k left to spend. How ever will i do it? Maybe over 2 years? Buying stuff just gets boring after a while. Plus it adds to the clutter. Truly bad.

So now you know. in other news…

Check out the latest Elle Decoration Revamp 2009 issue for the article on the Grand Daddy Air Stream Mobile hotels. In the one about Mark Stead’s 3 Bears Caravan, you’ll see pics of some bear letters and writings that i did. Some very warped bear letters and writings. Ah, good times.

Until tomorrow, my branded friends, i say goodnight.

Film review: How to get ahead in Advertising. Excuse the weird code at the top. Don’t know wtf. Something to do with the font no doubt. There’s always something about the font. Sigh. Deciding to embrace it. Added a ‘Build character’ tag to this post.

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Watched ‘How to get ahead in advertising’ last night. Thought it would give me all sorts of handy tips and tricks, kind of like ‘Hey Whipple, Squeeze This’ did (the book, not the movie. Tho it would make a very useful movie). Tips like ‘Strike while the iron is hot’ which means you should write your headlines while you’re feeling inspired, or while you’re high on cocaine instead of making stupid conversation in the toilets at the agency xmas party.

Categorically incapable of Keeping It Real.

Richard E Grant: Categorically incapable of Keeping It Real.

I’m not sure my how my agency would respond to me writing headlines at the Christmas party. Think they might ostracize me for life. Good thing I don’t work at the kind of agency that encourages or perpetuates drug use. I don’t think I’d ever be naturally inspired to write headlines while at any kind of party.

They should have called the movie ‘How to get severely agitated by watching Richard E Grant get all crazy like he did in Withnail and I’. Because that would be a really accurate descriptor of what kind of take-out you can expect from the film.

Still from the movie Withnail and I, the prequel to How to get Ahead in Advertising.

Still from the movie Withnail and I, the prequel to How to get Ahead in Advertising.

They could have also called it ‘Representation of the pathetic dude at every party who never knows when to stop’ and ‘Character study of a self-obsessed alcoholic idiot who appeals to submissive females with no self-esteem who are suckers for any kind of eloquent opinion’ or even ‘Most unrealistic marriage ever’ or ‘If you know anyone in Advertising who takes their job this seriously, kick them in the face’. The script writer managed to miss a very basic truth. No matter how passionate a copywriter you may be, you are only making ads. Not art. Nothing that warrants the kind of fuss Richard E Grant made.


Am really disappointed. There are so few Hollywood glamourisations of my career out there. I really thought this would inspire me to be the best copywriter I can be. Instead it made me want to phone my mother and tell her we’re not all like that. I also wanted to phone everyone I know and make amends, as if I had just realized the error of my ways via association.


Zany and passionate and likes to hold eggs. Thats how passionate. And creative. And zany.

"So crazy I hold eggs."

It made me want to stop smoking, even though I already have stopped smoking. It made me fully comprehend the words “No one likes a know-it-all” really and truly, for the first time in my life. It made me want to think about never having an opinion on anything ever again.

It also made me draw Grant parallels. I thought about how Richard E Grant can only play one type of character, and how Hugh Grant can also only play one type of character. Then I generalized that that’s the case with most actors / actresses out there. Generalizing is always a good way to make ideas immediately relevant to you, yourself, because as I was sipping my first Vida e Double Mucho Meia de Leite Skinny Wet it occurred to me how it was prob true that most writers only have one style of writing ie. One type of character. So I feel inspired to work on my versatility. Gonna write some poems, some haikus, maybe a short story.

I’m gonna write love letters as if I was a grizzly bear in love. Not for versatility though, more because Mark asked me to do them for his Grand Daddy Bear-themed hotel room. Grawr. Snort. Ftttl.

Did no one tells Richard about staring too long into the abyss vibes and how it stares back? Think Richard E IS the abyss.

Did no one tell Richard about staring too long into the abyss vibes? Think Richard E IS the abyss.

just another Dark Knight review

RIP Heath Ledger. You did good.

RIP Heath Ledger. You did good.

Batman has always been my favourite comic character. Despite the fact that every time I pick apart the specifics (he’s a man, who dresses like a bat, who doesn’t have any real powers) I can’t understand it myself, but it’s always been the case. Since our flight back from Margate was only at 9.30 pm on the Monday following the Loerie Awards, we had quite a bit of time to kill in Durban, so we headed off to Gateway Mall, where we saw they were showing The Dark Knight on Imax. And thus we found a way to spend our time.

In short, I loved the movie. The Imax experience made it all the more special since every time Batman leapt off a building you got the feeling you were remixing your innards to make them more dance-friendly. I was nervous, because Jack Nicholson is a hard act to follow, especially in a role like The Joker. I was even more nervous because I was worried I wouldn’t like Ledger’s performance, and then I would feel really bad since Ledger died and he deserved to go out with a good performance. But the nerves disappeared very fast, to be replaced with goosebumps.

The Joker as played by Heath Ledger is decidedly the most creepy villain to come out of either Marvel or DC stables since I can remember. Nicholson – for me – seemed to coast on his natural creep-factor, while Heath Ledger brought something a lot more frightening to the table – a villain based in a reality that a lot of people in this world face. The fact that his character had his faith in people taken away at an early age, and then he then set out to prove that any good man could be stripped down to his constituent monster if you took away what he loved, managed to scrape at a something sensitive that lurks in my spinal fluid. I guess having spent a lot of time trying to work out why criminals in South Africa cannot be reasoned with in their unflinching disrespect for human life, I have come across this story myself in many different examples. It was both moving and unnerving to see it on the big screen.

What really sold the story to me was the fact that despite the disturbing nature of Ledger’s Joker portrayal, I grew to really like the character. This reminds me of when I read American Psycho for the first time. Sure, he sliced up women and homeless people, but the author inspired empathy in me for the monster, as did Ledger. When I finished that book, I felt as if I’d lost a best friend.

I read somewhere once that characters in stories are merely focused and exaggerated versions of the various characters that live within and make up our minds. Everyone has a Joker, a Patrick Bateman, and only by loving those characters as well as loving the naturally likeable characters in your mind can you ever exercise any control over them. And that’s what makes super villains into just that – super. Liked, despite. Ah, man. I’m so glad this movie didn’t disappoint me. If you haven’t seen it, you’re in for a treat.

accessible if emo art makes a perfect gift: youth apathy

also found on Notcot. Subzero is less than life. to quote the packaging of this mantlepiece masterpiece:

subzero came from a look at the psychology of populations. and well, myself….seemingly conscious, educated and caring, but completely paralyzed by the understanding of a lawless administration, various nations at war, a planet reaching boiling point, and it all seems out of control. Subzero does nothing; Less Than Nothing. He is depressed from his incapacity to affect anything. In the end it’s a call to arms really but for now he remains motionless, frustrated, mad, and simply bummed out.”