Thursday, 28 October 2010

The adman's anecdote



The other day - not Tuesday, the other day - I was introduced to my agency's figurehead. This is a man who, I was told, has won more business for his agency than anyone in its history, has handled some of the biggest brands in the world and is regarded in the business as a god. He dates from the days when a single man could devise the positioning, write the ad, charm the client and quadruple sales.

'Whatever', I said. 'Is he buying lunch?'

He was. So I agreed to meet him.

Now, on the upside, the old boy didn't mind shelling out for all the good stuff that clients like: champers, vodders, beerers, lobsterers, mixed grillers and claret 'n' WKDers.

But he also shat out a ball-hurtingly high number of that cornerstone of adland: The Adman's Anecdote.

For my younger fellow marketing professionals, some guidance: The Adman's Anecdote can only be delivered by an elder statesman - someone who saw the gold era of advertising.

It will begin with the words, 'You know...' followed by a pause. This pause is the signal to us, the mere mortals of the marketing world, to shut the fuck up, strap your arse, cock and balls in nice and tight, and get ready for a life-changing bit of insight.

The anecdote will then commence in earnest. Usually like this:

Sir George Pisspot once told me, when he was Chairman of Kodak, that they were having real trouble in the western states of America.

'What kind of problem, Sir George?' I asked (we were very close friends, you know).

'The bastards won't bloody well buy our bloody products. No matter what we do, the bastards won't buy anything. I'm thinking of pulling out of the place altogether!'

I said, 'Give me two weeks, Sir George. I'll see what I can do.'

So off I toddled to the west coast, and I talked to their product man over there, and their sales chap, and everyone else in the company, right down to the receptionist. And after a week, I got them all in the boardroom and said, 'I know what your problem is. But you're going to have to trust me 100% to fix it.'

Then I opened the boardroom door, and Brigitte Bardot walked in. (I'd called her - she's an old friend.)

Well, they were amazed.

I said, 'Meet the new face of Kodak.'

They just applauded. We did some beautiful ads. I wrote the ad where Bardot is looking out from the ad with the line, 'Why I take better pictures than you', and my signature was underneath. And another with a picture of Bardot in a pool, and the line, 'Who is the legend? The subject or the photographer?' with a picture of me and my signature underneath. And another, with just a big picture of me and my signature, with a little shot of Bardot, and the line, 'A legendary adman explains why Kodak takes better pictures. Even if you're just a woman.'

It was a very famous campaign. It quadrupled sales.

Well, I went back to Sir George and said, 'There you go Georgey Boy - I've conquered the wild west for you!'

He laughed and laughed and gave me a Bentley.

The anecdote will then end, and as far as I can tell, nobody has a fucking clue what it had to do with the conversation that preceded it, but nobody has the banjos to say, 'Sir? What the FUCK are you going on about, you old cuntslot? Don't you have an appointment with your proctologist to get to?'

Well, nobody had the banjos to say it until I turned up. His face was a picture! Of hate, mainly.

Still, you have to call it like you see it. I fucking do. Even when I'm absolutely smashed, which I was. A lot.

Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT!

You wankers

So I'll blog a bit more

But now I'm back

I have been away

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Oh, my head

I have had, for the last four days, a hangover of the kind that ravingly dipsomaniac tramps can only dream of.

Here's why.

As my last post revealed (shockingly and amazingly and like a tabloid newspaper with a massive pair of balls), I had caught my agency's CEO getting a chobble from a junior account exec (a boy one) and had gently negotiated my way back into the creative process.

(Previously, the same CEO had barred me from getting involved in any way in the creative at all, full stop, no way, never. I have no idea why he wouldn't want my incredible and envelope-pushing creative genius involved, but he bribed me with money and bristolas, so I didn't really question him.)

Naturally, being back in the creative fold demanded that I celebrate my banger and balls off, so I headed out into London in search of an establishment that would serve me a modest glass of shandy and a prawn bap.

And everything would have been fine if I had found such a place.

But all I could find were heaving boozers filled with dirty old skippers absolutely obsessed with robbing me of my dignity and innocence, and bar staff who simply refused to exchange my hard-earned loot for anything but pint pots filled with brandy, claret, WKD and brandy.

What's a boy to fucking doodle-do?

Well, after five or twelve of that kind of establishment, I very much tired of the whole jape and told Janice, Yvonne and Dawn from...whoever they worked for...that I wouldn't be able to fulfil the demands they'd been making of me for the previous hour. (These fucking women - bang us like that, gobble us there, spit on my things - they were unbelievable. Well, I think that's what they were saying. There's a chance that it was me who was saying it, but even so. Jesus.)

So, I moved on in search of a more spiritually enriching venue for my celebration and, after a quick dart into The Booze Pantry for some medicinal four-litre bottles of Latvian whisky, wouldn't you know it, I happened upon a church. The door policy seemed quite strict (they were locked) but I managed them to talk them, and then kick them, into opening up for me.

Now, I like a church. And this one was just perfect. It had a nice stained glass window that was beautifully and evocatively lit by the golden neon light on the adult book shop over the way. It was very soothing. So I did what I think the Lord would have wanted: I filled the font with scotch and stuck my face in it.

Some time later, according to medical reports, I died.

Not just in a figurative way. I very definitely died, with the heart stopping, the breathing ceasing and the bodily fluids exiting from all the major orifices (they don't fucking show that on Casualty, do they?)

Luckily, I was disturbed by the vicar's wife who was coming to prepare the church for a fete the next day. Seeing me prostrate on the deck, with that beatific light bursting through the stained glass and onto my lifeless body, she came over all saintly and leapt on top of me, frantically pumping my chest and performing the breathy-gob life-saving stuff.

Dear reader, it worked! (Thank fuck, eh? Can you imagine a world with zero Knockles?)

Now, the vicar's wife, seeing me bathed in glorious light through the stained glass window, clearly thought I was in some way special. You know, blessed or, possibly, the second coming. Because when she saw my eyes open, she sat there, straddling me, roaring 'Yes! Yes! YES!'

Obviously, that's when the vicar, walked in.

Did he like what he saw? Clearly not. He ran over to his wife and shouted, 'VERONICA! OF ALL THE PLACES!', and started pulling her off me, quite roughly for a man of the cloth.

In my slightly befuddled state (I'd just fucking died, remember) I perceived this as an act of aggression and I stood up and...well...kicked his fucking teeth in. And properly. I can't remember much, but I do recall hitting him squarely in his googlebox with a pretty hefty crucifix, and drop-kicking him over the altar. I also called him 'God's fuckpiece' and a 'holy shit', which I admit now was unfair.

His missus did a lot of noisy begging and pleading that put me off my stride, so I staggered off into the night to recuperate. After a night like that, I needed a darned good rest!

And I had one, once I'd got back home from Delilaz. (Well, they had a BOGOF on lesbo shows - it would have been a shame to miss it just because an hour earlier I was clinically dead for an undetermined amount of time.)

That, then, is why I had a hangover.

The story has a happy ending, mind (apart from that trip to Delilaz). I popped along for a chat with the vicar's wife to explain everything. (Her face was a picture! Of a very frightened woman, to be exact.) She was understandably jumpy and mentioned calling the police but I bunged her a big wodge of loot to cover all the costs and buy some new bibles, and she was as good as gold. I also threatened to really fuck her husband up if she breathed a word to the filth. So - all smiles in the end!

The lesson, though, my fellow marketing professionals, is this: don't die. It can leave you with a fucking awful headache.

Of course, death can't touch Dave Knockles.

Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT!

Thursday, 14 October 2010

Eat my balls, agency motherfuckers!

My fellow marketing professionals, I have news.

I am finally free of the creative shackles placed upon me by my agency! (You may remember that they requested that I stay away from my advertising and let them, the 'experts', do it all.)

They also offered me a very attractive remuneration package and as many girls as I could fit into my trousers.

(Now, I am a man of integrity so I took that bri...incentive because I knew it was better for the development of that agency. They'd get nowhere with me always showing them how to tear down the walls of their minds with all kinds of crazy creative shitbombs. They'd learn nothing! No - better to let them figure it out themselves and donate the massive monthly bonus they gave me to charity. Which I will definitely do, once I've decided which one to give it to. Serious. Also, I have to pay off the swimming pool I'm having put into my front garden.)

Well, that was how it was. But that is not how it is. Not since today when happenings happened, and occurrences occurred.

I was in the agency for a regular update meeting, of the sort where they try to tell me things about sales and profit and all that shittage, and I just tear the room to pieces by dropping mental depth charges like, 'Don't tell me about sales. Tell me about smiles' and 'Where does my reputation begin and my brand end?' and 'Where the fuck are the croissants I like, you useless cuntburgers?'

It was all going as it always did. So when the planner stood up, I made my usual sprint for the shitter, where I intended to stay until I thought it safe to return.

I am so very glad that I did. Because when I booted open the trap door and prepared to walk in I beheld a wonderful sight.

There, sitting on the throne, wearing an expression of blameless rapture, was the agency's chief executive. (Yes - that one! The one who suggested I fuck off out of the creative.)

And there he was.

Being fellated.

By a very young account executive.

And not a female one.

Now, Dave Knockles is no homophobe. What two people do with their own fists in the privacy of their own home is their business. But I happen to know that this particular Soho toffee-bonce has a wife and two kids called something like Fudgey-Mint and Apple Mac.

So, after he'd pulled his bespoke trousers up, and sent the young Charles or Henry or Oliver on his tearful way, and said 'Fuck' several times, and stopped crying, I thought it only fair to say, 'Dear oh dear oh dear, my old mate. Now I'm no planner, but that looks to me like the kind of demographic cross-pollination your missus definitely wouldn't approve of. Or is that just evidence of agency integration?'

At first, he just called me a cunt. But finally, he said, 'What do you want?' (Then he called me a cunt again.)

'Well, I'm struggling to make ends meet on that measly bung you're giving me,' I said. 'I've got a fucking swimming pool to pay for - so you'll need to double the dosh.'

'Fine,' he said. (And called me a cunt.)

'And I'll need to approve the creative work from now on,' I added.

This time, he really called me a cunt. And a fuckface, a shit-eating cock, a stupid prick-end, an idiot bastard and a moron. But in the end, what could he do? (Apart from call me a cunt again.)

I walked back into the meeting and, do you know, I actually enjoyed the planner's presentation. Particularly the bit on...actually, I tell a lie. It was still so tedious and confusing I wanted to shit my own liver. I just had a big smile on my face.

Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT! AND I AM FUCKING BACK!

Tuesday, 12 October 2010

I have been to hell and back




My friends, I have been sick.

But not like you're sick. I mean sick like Chernobyl residents, lepers, bubonic plague victims and Michael Jackson.

Yes. That fucking sick.

It began as a small throaty tickle which, frankly, I ignored because I was drinking absinthe at the time. And smoking a cigar. And eating a balti.

I couldn't ignore it the next morning, however, when I woke with a noseful of luminous gloop and a voice like a 70-a-day smoker. (Which I'm not. I've never smoked. It's a sign of weakness. Unlike drinking, which is a sign of immense power and coolness. These are facts.)

So, being a management machine and shining example to my staff, I struggled into work at 10.30 and battled through as best I could, though I needed a really good think in my darkened office from about 11am until...ooh...about 4.30pm. I just asked the work experience girl to come in every half an hour and wipe the mucus from my nose, mouth, face, shoulders, arms and shoes, where it seemed to be pooling quite a lot.

The next day, matters worsened. The flu-like symptoms seemed to remain constant, but I developed a positively brutal attack of diarrhea, coupled with painful stomach cramps and explosive vomiting.

On more than one occasion, this required me to fire a stream of molten brown lava from my clackshoot while at the same time yacking like a teenager on neat scotch and raw bacon.

This wouldn't be a problem if my bathroom had been designed with this tricky manaoeuvre in mind. I've performed the 'double evacuation' many times. But my executive toilet is some way from my executive sink and my executive bath. This made things complicated. And fucking messy.

In the end, I developed a technique which I call 'poopee'. Essentially, you poo just like you'd pee - from a distance, aiming into the bowl, firing an arc of feculence through the air to its target. Given the fact that I was, more or less, pissing out of my arse, this was quite simple.

Well, after the first few goes. Sort of.

Let's just say that there was a certain amount of collateral damage. (The cleaner's face the next day was a fucking picture when she saw it! Strangely, after she'd cleaned up, she seemed to have lost any power of facial expression at all. She looked almost...I dunno...dead. You know, inside. Weird. Cheeky cow asked for extra pay, though! 'You can't have extra,' I replied. 'But you can come back tomorrow and do it again.' I'm not a monster, you know.)

Well, after that you'd think it couldn't get any worse.

But it did.

I mean, I shat the bed pretty much constantly for the whole next day, and the day after that I went to the doctor and puked in her mouth.

Not on purpose! God, no! She was examining my throat and flicked my sick button with the wooden thing she was holding my tongue down with. The rest was down to mother nature, or God, or whoever designed the sick button. It wasn't my fucking fault, that's for sure.

I'd been really battling to keep a hold of my lunch (nothing too rich - just a couple of Pot Noodles and a box of scotch eggs and a microwaveable burger and a packet of cheese balls) so I was definitely due a bit of a barf.

Well, I let it go just as she was opening her mouth to speak. It's actually quite striking how much she swallowed. And - get this for irony! - she was just about to say 'Try not to throw up again - it's bad for your throat'! (She told me this when I phoned her in hospital later. She was recovering after having her stomach pumped, and a small operation to remove a scotch egg from her esophagus. She seemed stoical, if psychologically damaged.)

After that, things got really bad. But I won't go into it because I'm not one of those people who goes on and on about their illness in graphic and disturbing detail.

Anyway, now I feel as chipper and tremendous as ever, so I'm going into the agency to demand a room full of people come up with solutions to problems I don't have.

Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT!

Tuesday, 5 October 2010

Client Prerogative

During my many years as a guide, mentor, guru and source of inspiration to the younger generation of marketing professionals, I've had to develop teaching tools that will appeal to that audience.

One technique I've found particularly effective is to base my teachings on a popular song. And what could be more popular than Bobby Brown's seminal 'My Prerogative'? Everybody loves My Prerogative.

So, here's the DK version, which I have renamed 'Client Prerogative'. Singing this (with dance moves) to a room full of wide-eyed, gobsmacked young marketing wannabes is always a highlight. (Although I've actually only done it once - which is weird, right? You'd think people would want to learn how to be a client through the medium of funk and dance.)

You can read the original lyrics here. Mine, I think we can agree, make them look shitting useless.

Client Prerogative
(Brown, Knockles)

Everybody's talking all this stuff about me,
They all think I'm im-press-ive,
I'll take a small commission,
To help sway my decision,
That's client prerogative.

They say I'm lazy,
I really don't care,
That's client prerogative.
They say I'm abusive,
But they can go and fuck themselves in the clackypipe,
Getting paid is how I live.

Some messy questions, how am I so dyanmic?
But they don't understand my zen-like focus on the bottom line,
I really don't know the deal about her brother,
Or who her brother is, or who she is for that matter,
In fact, this part of the original song makes no fucking sense, sing...

Everybody's talking all this stuff about me,
They all think I'm e-ffect-ive,
Product in the headline,
I'll miss your every deadline,
That's client prerogative.

It's the way that I wanna live,
I can do just what I feel,
No-one can tell me what to do,
Cos what I'm doing, I'm doing for the ongoing improvement of profitability and consumer delight.

Don't get me wrong,
I'm not really souped,
Ego trips not my thing,
All these agencies,
Really get me down,
I see nothing wrong in
Spreading myself around.

It's client prerogative,
I can do what I wanna do,
And if you're giving out 'gifts',
I'll certainly take a few.

Everybody's talking all this stuff about me,
They all think I'm pro-duct-ive,
Bristolas in my advert,
Make me very glad-vert,
That's client prerogative.

That's client prerogative (repeat 'til fade).



If you're a young marketing buck (or buckess, or whatever the female equivalent of a buck is) then try singing this to yourself a few / hundreds of times a day and see how your career takes off.

I will share more of my groundbreaking teaching tips in the coming weeks. Or I may not. That's client prerogative!

(HA HA! I am a funny fucker, I really, really am. My agencies have always endorsed this view when I've asked them the question, 'Am I a funny fucker or what?' They all say 'Yes!' All of them. So I must be.)

Anyway, I've got to go and do something for the afternoon in a location that's conveniently close to my house.

Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT!

Monday, 4 October 2010

Man appears in ad

HOLD ON TO YOUR DANGLEBAGS AND PREPARE TO HAVE YOUR MINDHOLE BLOWN WIDE OPEN!

A man off the telly is set to appear in a TV ad in which he holds a product up in front of the camera and attempts to forge a link in the minds of consumers between himself and the people who make the product - even though that link does not in actual fact exist at all!

The man, the least famous of three quite famous men, has in the past claimed to have some affinity for the product - though this turns out to be the general product, rather than this specific product, which he has never actually mentioned at all.

The decision to use the man as a 'figurehead' for the product has been heralded as a groundbreaking step in the world of advertising. One man, an advertising expert called something, described the use of the celebrity as 'a complete first, a never-before-seen strategy, a turning point for our profession and a revelation for the world at large'.

While some dissenters, mainly the entire general public, are suggesting that this has been done more times than Madonna and is, in fact, so tiresomely predictable that it makes them want to reach inside their own throats and tear out their genitals from the inside, many inside advertising are - quite literally - wanking themselves to a soapy fruition and convincing themselves that this isn't a bone idle pissing away of a client's cash.



Jesus, I'm bored of advertising. I might go and do something else more enjoyable. Like fuck my own face with a cricket bat I've had marinading up a cow's clacker for a month. (I actually have one of those. I just can't remember where I left the cow.)

How hard can it be, really?

If you're going to have a celeb, have one with bristolas that look like the winner of the prize pumpkin competition. Especially if you're advertising beer! It's fucking simple, but you lot seem to consistently and willfully ignore the golden nuggets of 24-carat solid gold diamond bullion advice I'm dishing out.

Jesus!

Anyway, I'm off to do whatever I fucking like.

Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT!