At 6am this morning, I wake up to the loud and insistent buzzing of my entry phone. Muttering dark curses, I stagger out of bed to the thing shrieking on the wall.
“Hello. What the bloody hell do you want ?”
The reply is neither sober nor polite.
“Let me in, dude! For f**&sake, let me in. I’m freezing to death out here!”
“Who are you?” I demand, annoyed. “How do I know you’re not an axe murderer who calls people ‘dude’ in order to get into their homes and chop them into small bits ?”
“I’m James,” he sobs. “I’m your new next door bloody neighbour, for f*&%sake! I lost my flippin keys at the Ogilvy Loeries party in Long Street. And then I lost my phone at the Jupiter party - and one shoe.”
“How do I know this is true, James?”
“It’s true, dude! I spilled a caramel vodka on Sanjiv Mistry’s shirt and I called Paul Warner a p -.”
” – Okay. Okay. Come in.”
I buzz the gate open, and a shivering human staggers in. His hands are blue, his T shirt is rain-sodden and he smells like an off-licence.
“You’d better come inside, to avoid death,” I suggest, indicating the sofa and throwing a blanket on it.
“I feel like crap,” he whimpers, lowering himself into the foetal position.
“Good. I’m going back to bed,” I mutter as I walk away. “Don’t be an axe-murderer, and don’t vomit on my rug,”
“I feel like crap,” he moans softly.
“I know, James. That’s caramel vodka for you.”
“No, I mean, really crap.”
“I know, James,” I sigh, “That’s a bronze Loerie for you.”
Then he lost consciousness.
That’s advertising awards for you.
It’s the bronze when you expected a silver, or the finalist that got nothing, or even a gold that didn’t turn into a Grand Prix. (That hurts, too.)
That’s why they have the Loeries, you know: They have them to make us feel crap. Well, to make 90% of us feel crap. The other 10% will feel like Chad and his dad at the Olympics, but the 90 per centers will feel disappointed, rejected, robbed, snubbed, and slighted.
When those feelings hit, you should drink a big, fizzy glass of Suck It Up And Get Over It. But you won’t. No. You’ll have nine caramel vodkas and couple of Patrons instead.
Then you’ll lose your keys and arrive on someone’s doorstep, all shabby, tottering and smelly.
Awards aren’t the biggest deal, really, they aren’t, but as deal sizes go, they’re big-ish. Why? Because they make us try harder. Which means we do better work – and that’s got to be a good thing.
Well done to all the winners. Well done, Ogilvy and Black River and Network BBDO and Joe Public and everyone else who didn’t leave feeling unloved. I hope you feel as wonderful as it’s physically possible to feel after two solid nights of celebrating.