Friday, February 10, 2006


I'm not going to stop pestering you until you push a pin in my Guestmap, dammit. Do it now!

(Unless you already have, in which case you can expect the winds of change to carry good fortune your way.)


Thanks to Stevie Wetnap for sharing this bit of pop hilarium. Click on the image to enlarge.

Congratulations on the new bay-bee. Try and keep her off the tequila til she's at least 2, would ya?


There are a lot of signs I am getting older, but the most disturbing, by far, is that I’ve noticed myself breaking wind in public without even noticing it. It just happened at the water cooler. I was filling up my ceramic mug with hot water to stir up an afternoon cup of hot cocoa when I suddenly caught wind of something dreadful. That’s when it dawned on me that I had just loosed a gaseous ass beast. I fled the scene of the crime immediately, but was followed closely by the persistent brute for a good minute or so before finally losing the stinky bastard out on the fire escape.

When did I get so old I stopped noticing that I was farting? It’s something I remember my sister and I giggling about when we were kids – our great grandmother shuffling about the house, farting noisily and entirely unaware of it. And here *I* am – much younger, and outside the comfort of my own home – letting slip heinous air biscuits as carelessly as I might sniffle or clear my throat.

Maybe it’s got nothing at all to do with age. Maybe I’m just losing my mind. I’ve clearly let down my guard where social embarrassment is concerned, recklessly polluting the air with utter disregard for any humiliation it might cause me. I wonder how many times I've been trapped in an elevator wondering who farted, when all along the guilty farty was me. There it is again! That smell! I think I need to call the gas company because I've definitely got a leak.


On a separate note, someone just informed me that the Olympics have started. I had no idea the Olympics were so near. Did you? Aren’t those marathon runners going to get cold trekking about in all this cold weather?

What's that? Winter games? Oh.

I knew that.


Here's a rumor so outlandish I had to check it out on Snopes. Turns out it's TRUE.

Instead of dialing 411 and paying $1.00 or more for information through your phone company, you can call 1-800-FREE-411 and get information for free.

Something about this didn't sound right to me, so I investigated. Turns out there are nearly 6 billion information calls are placed every year, and most of them are assessed a hefty service fee by the service provider. But 1-800-FREE-411 has taken a different tack. They receive your request just like 411, but while they're looking up your information, instead of having a live operator burp salami into the line on the other end, they run a few seconds of an ad. Unless you have a cocaine habit, the difference in the amount of time spent on the phone is negligible...and they'll even offer to connect you for free, just like 411.

I haven't had the opportunity to try this bad boy out yet, but sounds like a great way to avoid all of those expensive service charge add-ons my phone company likes to pile on every month. Next time you need a little 411, remember to dial 1-800-FREE-411 and let me know what you think!

Thursday, February 09, 2006


Not since South Park has a cartoon managed to offend so many people so fast.

Last September, a Danish newspaper asked cartoonists for submissions on the subject of the censorship of Muslim issues. They published 12 of the drawings they received featuring the Muslim prophet Mohammed. Some of the drawings, it has been suggested, were not done in great taste. When word of the “blasphemous” cartoons got out, Muslim protest ensued.

As you know, nothing draws a crowd like a crowd, and with protest came curiosity. Folks around the world wanted to understand WHY there was such public outrage over a few fucking cartoon drawings. Since they’d become such a hot topic, a number of other European newspapers decided to publish the cartoons – an editorial decision which, in hindsight, served to both educate the curious masses and enrage angry Muslim protesters from Baghdad to Bangladesh.

Apologies were demanded. But instead of apologies, Western newspapers and governments defended their publication of the cartoons as free press and expression. That institutions of the West would defend blasphemous caricatures of the revered prophet Mohammed further infuriated the nation of Islam. And, as Jim Croce astutely observed, "You don't tug on Superman's cape, you don't spit into the wind, you don't pull the mask off the old lone ranger and you don't infuriate Muslims." The gauntlet was officially thrown down.

One of the newspapers in France that published the cartoons had to evacuate after receiving bomb threats. Protesters threw firebombs and rocks at the Austrian Embassy in Iran. The Danish Consulate’s building in Lebanon was torched. Muslims around the world, from Afghanistan to Pakistan to Indonesia, have been protesting pretty much around the clock. Rioters are throwing stones and knives as they attempt to gain entry to Western embassies and air bases. Police have fired upon crowds, inciting further violence. Sales of American flags skyrocketed as eager rioters rush to burn the stars and stripes. [Sidenote: If I were a flag manufacturer, I'd be focusing my distribution efforts on foreign markets. Think about it. Old Glory can last 20 years or more flying from a flagpole in Flagstaff, but won't last ten minutes out of the plastic in Fallujah.]

The most extreme government protest came from Iran, which fanned the flames of this controversy by cutting off all trade ties with Denmark. Then the President (of Iran, silly!) announced a government-sponsored cartoon contest soliciting drawings that mocked the holocaust. Yes, really. He said he would be curious to see how the Western media would treat such “freedom of expression.” Not to be outdone, an online vendor here in the States (Metrospy) has announced it is now selling T-shirts with one of the offending drawings on it. The scary thing is that it's quickly become their biggest selling item.

So by now you've got to be wondering: Where the hell can I find these horrible cartoons? I would post them here for you but that I have little desire to become any more of a walking target than I already am. Instead, I’ll just refer you to the fearless folks at the Brussels Journal. Click here and judge the controversy for yourself. They're all posted at the bottom of the page for your review.

Much ado about nothing if you ask me.


Have you seen the addictive Flash game Kitty Cannon? You basically have to see how far you can launch a cat using a kitty cannon. Warning: Like Sudoku, once you start it's hard to stop. I must have blasted that pussy for a good two hours last night.

Need a little incentive? Until you top 1477, you are my beotch!

Wednesday, February 08, 2006


Need a little break in the middle of your day? That’s what I thought. Check out this fun diversion. Keep your cursor away from the meanie for as long as you can. He’s got a few tricks up his sleeve, so watch out! Oh yeah, and you have to stay on the blue mat or your time will reset. Enjoy!

Warning: This guy is a persistent bastard.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006


It's okay...we can stop talking about the Super Bowl commercials now. Really. It's the same shit every year. Everybody gets super excited to watch the commercials because we don't give a rat's ass who wins the fucking game - and then all we hear about the next day is how shitty the commercials were. Every year. People need to lower their expectations just a tad. Not every :30 TV ad can be a staggering work of genius. Here's why:

11:47 a.m.

For those of you who may be unfamiliar, I am in advertising. Creative advertising. Direct marketing. Persuasive communications. In fact, if you do any kind of marketing at all, you should e-mail me – I guarantee I can improve your marketing ROI. But enough sales – today I want to tell you about how creative advertising gets done in the real world.

Every once in a while I’m sure you see or hear an ad you really like – a cute outdoor board, a clever television spot, a funny radio ad, etc. But what you don’t get to see are all the good ideas that never made it. In fact, most of the best creative work gets shit-canned before the client even sees it. Really. All my best ideas end up in the recycling bin, literally.

What happens, typically, is a client calls with a particular need. A new logo. A web site. A direct mail package. An integrated marketing campaign: signage, take-ones, splash URL, postcard mailings, fulfillment DM - you name it. The need could be anything in the realm of marketing communications – from basic strategy decks to pretty PowerPoint presentations. Sometimes a client doesn’t even know what they need other than to get more people to buy their stuff, so they ask us to provide a little guidance – which we are always more than happy to do because we're in the business of getting people to buy things they don't need with money they either don't have or ought to be saving for social security's inevitable insolvency.

After the needs discovery phase, creative deliverables are itemized and a completely unreasonable schedule is drawn up. That’s because most people looking for creative marketing don’t understand the triangle principle.


In the world of advertising, and indeed in most business endeavors, the triangle principle is the golden rule. Simply put, you can choose any two sides you want - but ONLY TWO. So you can get your marketing good and fast, but it won’t be cheap. You can get it good and cheap, but it will take forever. Or you can get it cheap and fast, but it won’t be any good. Sorry, that's the way of the world. Economists call it opportunity cost. Everything comes at the expense of something else. Quality for speed. Speed for price. Price for quality. Etc.

Unfortunately, as I stated earlier, most people looking for creative marketing don’t understand the triangle principle – they come in looking for, and expecting, all three sides! So it then becomes the agency's challenge to deliver on the illusion that we are good, fast, AND cheap – when the fact of the matter is I'd have better luck getting a sponge bath from Stacy Keibler than hitting that improbable Trifecta.

So how is “creative” work actually created?

Basically, once a job has been “kicked off,” it ends up in the hands of a creative lead – someone whose job it is to ensure the job is completed on time, on strategy, and within budget. That would be me, and sometimes we actually achieve one of those basic objectives.

“Creative” department folks like to stroll in late, surf the web, suck down a shitload of coffee, and come up with pages full of rockin’ ideas only we think are brilliant. We loaf around until somebody calls a meeting during which everyone sits around in a highly agitated state and argues for really bad ideas. These are called brainstorming sessions – but they should be called ass-storming sessions considering all of the crap that gets thrown around. Still, submersed in all of that crap is usually a gem of an idea or two. I can usually spot that gem right away - but you've sometimes got to wait a while before other people come around to it. The trick to getting good ideas produced is to avoid ramming them through, but instead let people think they discovered them on their own. Sometimes that means patting someone else on the back for your stroke of genius.

Eventually, the creative team will come to a consensus on a kick-ass idea we all think has legs. Ten minutes later we all let loose a collective sigh when we realize the client would never go for it. That’s usually when I stand up and suggest we show the client our idea anyhow since we all think it's the best one in the room. Everyone chuckles at the absurdity of the notion as though it were offered in jest, and I walk off to get another cup of coffee comfortable in having spoken my peace. The best idea is officially killed and we move on.

By meeting's end, we typically wind up settling on the third or fourth best concepts which we then comp up for client review.

The gate-keeping account folks on the client side reflexively second-guess pretty much anything in those concepts that might be even accidentally considered offensive (otherwise known as "entertaining") and have us tone the creative down. So we tone it down and send back a mere shadow of the original concept, which is then passed around again where about a dozen different people (consulted randomly in the hallway) drop their pants and pee all over it because everybody's a fucking ad wizard. The disheartened, dispirited creative team then must sift through a damp list of comments reeking of irrelevant criticism and inane suggestions.

The final route of the concept is shattered and reassembled chinese menu style, where everyone's comments are incorporated so that the resulting creative work pleases no one. Although everyone agrees it could be much better, this is what gets "approved." At this point it gets sent to the client's legal department where the copy is modified further to remove anything that might be mistaken as humorous or insightful, and a litany of legal disclosures are added.

The resulting piece of shit is produced and THAT'S what you end up seeing, reading, or hearing. So let's cut the ad folks some slack. We're doing our best to rock your world - we just have a hard time convincing everyone else in the chain to roll with it.

Monday, February 06, 2006


55-year-old Harvey Bennett was a curious boat captain. Not bi-curious in a “I wonder what that would feel like” kind of way. But more like, “I wonder what would happen if I let sail five plastic bottles in the ocean off the coast of Long Island, NY.” Just your average, everyday curiosity about life and the world around him.

So last August, Harvey did just that – he let sail 5 plastic bottles in the ocean off the coast of Long Island, NY. And inside each bottle he included a message along with his address, asking for a reply.

Last month, believe it or not, Harvey actually got one! It was a letter sent all the way from England. Here’s what it read:

“I recently found your bottle while taking a scenic walk on the beach by Poole Harbour. While you may consider this some profound experiment on the path and speed of oceanic currents, I have another name for it, litter. You Americans don't seem to be happy unless you are mucking about somewhere.”

The letter was signed by Henry Biggelsworth of Bournemouth, Dorset. A fucking prick if ever a fucking prick there were.

“I kind of felt like no good deed goes unpunished,” said Harvey. It’s true, Harvey – not that your relatively harmless act of curiosity could be considered a good deed. Still, it certainly deserved a better reception than the venomous reply you received in the post. We have another name for uninspired cynics bent on ruining memorable life experiences for other people: asshole. That he took the time to scold you, and all Americans, in a thoughtfully crafted reply is a sad reflection of his dreary life.

If I were you, I’d return to your spot off the coast of Long island with a truckload of empty bottles, stuff them with cigarette butts and fast food wrappers, and send them off to your “friend” beyond the sea to thank him for his reply. “I recently received your reply and wanted to send along a token of my appreciation – several hundred glass castaways you can shove up your fucking ass, you cheeky bastard. Your friend, Harvey.”


Let’s face it, Chuck Norris is the man. Always will be. And if the list of Norrisian facts I posted a few weeks ago wasn’t enough to prove it, here’s a link you need to check out. It’s a compilation of little known facts about the legendary American assbeater. Read it. Study it. Memorize it. There may be a quiz, and it may be administered by Chuck Norris.

Failure to recognize Chuck’s power may result in your swift expiration. Consider yourself warned.

Your guide to everything Chuck


Idiots of the world prosper! Some would call this idea brilliant...but only in hindsight. Who would have predicted so many advertisers would have rushed to get their name on this guy's Internet ad board?

It’s called the Million Dollar Homepage and it's a single web page on which you will find a massive mosaic of advertisements. Apparently, this guy started selling pixel space on his “billboard” and the concept caught on fast after he managed a little press. SO many people came to check out the site, more and more companies wanted to get in on the action.

Now it’s the ultimate opportunity for online advertisers to get noticed.

It's a fun place to find niche advertisers - move your cursor around the screen a bit and read what some of these sites have to offer. Then go fuck yourself. Sorry, my monkey got a hold of my keyboard again. BAD monkey!