I Will What I Want

Friends, if you haven’t seen the new spot from Under Armour floating around the internet, then you must be on a social media detox. Or it’s because Facebook actually just went down.

For once, the voiceover actually adds to (rather than distracts from) the impact of the creative – told through the voice of a 13 year old Misty Copeland, originally denied her dream of becoming a ballerina for a myriad of crushing reasons. Because when you’re 13, your torso length is definitely one more thing you should be worried about and self-conscious of.

The story of denial and failure perfectly sets up what we are all excited and relieved to know is coming – her triumph as a soloist for the American Ballet Theater. The first African American soloist at the ABT in 20 years, no less.

The concept and cry of willing yourself to win, or accomplish something isn’t exactly a new one, but execution is everything, and this is beautifully done. It doesn’t hurt that it’s also a true, triumph-of-the-underdog story.

Now, let’s all go log some heel raises at the barre, because, those calves. That extension.

DSLR Clueless

As I mentioned previously, I got a new camera for my birthday and am still trying to sort out how it works and everything that it can do.

That said – when I came across this campaign (which happens to be for my camera), I could totally relate. Someday I might graduate to a real semi-pro camera, but that isn’t today.

Check out the below for a humorous take on how people (presumably like me) use DSLR cameras to shoot, on… say, auto…


Five More, Glorious and Meant to Be Lived, Years

Friends, we have to talk about something serious. According to Adweek:

“For the first time ever, the current generation of children is expected to have a shorter life expectancy than their parents. (Told you it was depressing.) Five years shorter, to be exact.”

Five years.

But, why? We all know the answer. Kids are subsisting on happy meals or other processed and packaged things and video games are no longer just for a rainy day. It’s a bleak picture, and it isn’t like people aren’t trying – see Let’s Move!, among others. We just aren’t trying hard enough.

The Nike Foundation has teamed up with the creative geniuses at Wieden+Kennedy in Portland to craft the following short featuring adorable kids telling the camera how they would spend five extra years. Five years that they may not have.

So let’s all go for a run. Let’s play tennis. Or kickball. Or tag. Let’s lead as a generation and set an example. I don’t have kids yet, but I grew up wanting to be a runner like my mom. When I lace up my running shoes to hit the West Side Highway after a long day at work , I remember her teaching me to slow my pace before giving up or quitting, to just keep moving. When I get back to my apartment, I still text her how many miles I logged.

We can mentor, love, encourage and support each other through of a lot of things – like dire predictions – and carry each other into better things – like five more years of real food, work, play and really just  living. 

Trust Your Power

Somewhere between The Blind Side and The Glass Castle lies the story of Patrick Willis – now a linebacker for the San Francisco 49ers. Growing  up in Bruceton, Tennessee, he was forced to care for his younger siblings when his mother abandoned them, leaving them with their abusive  father.

Pairing up with Duracell to launch their “Trust Your Power” campaign, Willis’ story illustrates digging deep and overcoming some of life’s greatest obstacles.

The short is beautiful.

Credit: Saatchi & Saatchi NY

Also, the short is a great improvement over this Duracell work plastered all over the subway. Not really your best, Jay-Z.

Advertising and Mustard

I work in advertising at a great agency in New York. We aren’t on Madison Ave, but I do like Mad Men. I do not drink at my desk or condone adultery. If you watch the show, I know those are the first questions you would have for me.

But because I work in advertising, you can expect that sometimes I will blog about it.

Case 1 – The Society of Good Taste

Grey Poupon and Crispin Porter + Bogusky have launched a new mass-market campaign – a first for Grey Poupon in a while.  The theme is perfect – “Spread good Taste.” Much of it currently hinges on a Facebook page where fans “apply” for membership, their page is scanned to evaluate tastes, refinery, culture… etc., and they are either welcomed into The Society or not.

As a recent convert to mustard- I now realize I only dislike yellow mustard – I of course thought myself an easy accept. I don’t like the plebian yellow mustard, I much prefer the spicy brown or coarse deli mustard. Of course, Grey Poupon will find my Facebook interactions and honeymoon photos and “hi! phone date soon?” wall posts to be more than enough to realize I have tastes for the finer things in life, including mustard. Furthermore, I have had at least one “conversation” with my dear husband about how Grey Poupon is one thing that simply shouldn’t be replaced by a store brand. (Another point for refinery.) My logic for this is that one Barefoot Contessa claims it is the best ingredient to always have on hand for sauces and vinaigrettes. So I believe her, and I buy the real thing.

All of this build up is to admit that I was not in fact admitted to The Society. I was deemed normal. The feedback from The Society was actually, “Try perusing a good book!” (Ha.) So while my enthusiasm has diminished in light of my rejection; I have created a self-serving rationale for my exclusion. I simply don’t detail all the fabulous books I’ve read, food I’ve sampled and places I’ve seen on Facebook. I know it’s silly, but this way, I can still like the campaign and maintain that I am somewhat well read and cultured. (Much more to come on books, by the way.)

The feel of the campaign is great – it makes me think of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society and Graham Memorial building at Carolina for some reason. The copy is witty and endearing and it all feels warm, anglophilic and like tufted club chairs in an oak paneled room. Certainly, this is the intention. Next time I think of reading a book by a roaring fire in a cozy chair, I’ll envision a jar of Grey Poupon on the end table.

I’ll let you know if I apply again for membership.