Thursday, May 04, 2006

Rub your eyes. Clap your hands.

Believe it or not, this happened in front of my eyes one night in the eighties. To begin at the beginning, though, back in the fifties, a lapsed chef and cooking stove salesman from the UK started his own agency in the US. He then went on to become a Legend and a best-selling author. His famous book spurred me on into advertising. Many years later, in the late eighties, I saw him making a massive nuisance of himself one night in the elevator of a posh Pune hotel. I was there for a seminar hosted by the ad agency I consulted with. The Legend was there for a similar reason and was trying to needle his Indian colleagues into making mincemeat of the agency I worked for – very, very loudly. I was the only odd man out in that elevator crammed with the Great Man and his team mates totally oblivious of me and my reason for being there. Fortunately for me, I must emphasize. Or, I may not be here to tell you the tale, who knows? But then you couldn’t really begrudge the Genius – and “the world’s best known advertising man” by his own insistence – his carefully cultivated and widely flaunted little eccentricities, could you? An amusing and beguiling capsule biography is here:

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