The Musings Of An Opinionated Sod [Help Me Grow!]

Conversations With The Enemy …
January 23, 2013, 6:15 am
Filed under: Comment

So last week, I had a conversation with someone I thought I hated.

Note I said “thought”, because the fact is, until last week – I had never met the person, I had simply encountered them through their work.

I didn’t like their work.

In fact I hated it.

To be fair, some of this was because of the people who liked this individual, rather than me purely loathing all they did. But I did. I bloody hated it.

That said, I appreciated their broader influence and I respected their beliefs – even if I didn’t agree with them – but all in all, they were in my ‘shit box’ and had remained there for literally, a couple of decades.

So imagine my surprise, when last week, I found myself on the phone, talking to this guy.

Worse, imagine my surprise, when last week, I found myself on the phone, talking to this guy and liking him.

I should add this was not because I suddenly agreed with all his views and opinions [though without doubt, I did on some things] but because he was a smart, charming, informed and amusing.

In addition, he also didn’t hang up on me when I told him how much I used to loath him and his ‘companies’ work … though that could also be because I mentioned how a certain colleague of mine spent 2 years mimicking him at work, just to annoy the shit out of me.

All in all, it was a really enjoyable, informative and thought-provoking conversation.

This has left me in a pickle.

I’ve been robbed of a belief that I had blindly hung on to for years.

A belief that I accept, was – potentially – based on nothing more than adolescence, pettiness and belonging.

OK, so this change in opinion could be based on me maturing. [Ahem]

Or maybe they’ve stopped being such an obnoxious arsehole. [Ahem]

But whatever the case, it’s reminded me that whether it’s people, research, clients or agencies … you should never judge a book by it’s [media] covee – never, ever, ever – unless it’s Bono, because I’m absolutely certain he’s an egotistical, little twat.

45 Comments so far
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so are you now getting a signed copy of Lovemarks?

Comment by niko

Cheeky sod. Besides, I don’t think any conversation with him would make me suddenly change my view on his view of advertising.

Comment by Rob

The same applies to advertising blogs.

Comment by John

Heaven knows he is miserable now. Quite literally I would imagine.

Comment by George

I can’t believe you told him you disliked his work. Actually I can. Hilarious.
A very entertaining read Robert. Thank you.

Comment by George

Love your first comment George.

Comment by Pete

Oh very droll.

Comment by Rob

But George stole my line

Comment by northern

“I’ve been robbed of a belief that I had blindly hung on to for years.”

In some way, I think your statement explains what is behind many of the problems we have in the World. From war to racism to religion to gun control. Assumption, paranoia and dehumanisation all combine to create myopic and impenetrable points of view.

How did you feel just as you were about to begin the meeting? Were you thinking you were going to hate him or were you eager to find out more?

Great post Rob.

Comment by Pete

To be honest Pete, I didn’t know what to expect. I certainly didn’t go in with the attitude that I would dislike him … apart from being a bit more mature from those teenage angst days, I just found the whole thing utterly surreal. Still do.

Comment by Rob


Comment by Pete

No fist fight? You pair of wimps.

Comment by Billy Whizz

Who was it? Kevin Roberts or Morrissey? Or are you guys as much in the dark as me and just throwing names out there. What about that australian female swimmer who won an olympic medal in the 50’s. Can’t remember her name but he loathed her.

This is hard, there’s so many people Rob can’t stand. But not quite as many as the amount of people that hate him. Boom Tish.

Comment by DH

Ronald Regan
George W Bush
George Bush
Air Supply
His career adviser
Russell Crowe
The person behind lemon flavored diet coke
The 1990s

Comment by Billy Whizz

Good list Billy.

Comment by George

And there I was thinking you never listened to a word I said Billy.

Comment by Rob

The swimmer is Dawn Fraser. I’d forgotten about her which is amazing giving the continual vitriol he pointed in her direction. I know who it is because he did it for us. It was my little way of getting some payback for all the years of abuse he gave me about it. The fact he ended up quite liking the person was the cream on the cake.

Comment by Pete

Pete’s gone rogue. Good work. So who was it? If I read between the lines of George’s comment, it was a member of the smiths, probably Morrissey. Please tell me it was, that would be hilarious.

Comment by DH

That would explain why there wasnt a fight. Ones too scared to fight and the other too weak. A match made in pathetic heaven.

Comment by Billy Whizz

I’m bound by confidentiality Dave.

By the way, how long have you been clairvoyant?

Comment by Pete

Love it. Does Andy know? It would put a smile on his face. You’ve won my ‘person of 2013’.

Comment by DH

The power of perseverance.

Comment by Pete

Oh Dawn Fraiser has a very special place in my heart. Completely irrational of course … but despite learning an interesting lesson from this episode, an irrational loathing I am not prepared to let go of. Though in my defense, I did sort-of see her attitude in action during the Sydney Olympics … but that’s a story for another day.

Comment by Rob

And yes, it was Northern’s “best buddy” I spoke to. And yes, he knows about it. I don’t think he will ever let me live it down.

Comment by Rob

You are right, I won’t

Comment by northern

How very entertaining. Don’t feel too bad Robert, when asked to challenge our prejudices, few can give a justifiable, or even coherent, answer.

Comment by Lee Hill

That doesn’t really make me feel better, but thank you Lee.

Comment by Rob

So in brief. “I didn’t like someone. They called. I like them now”. How come nobody comes and leaves a comment on my blog when I reveal that kiddy rapist Jimmy Savile had intimate and prolonged access to the Royals and Downing Street because he worked for MI5? Is this the Jersey Shore of Blogging here? Am I doing it wrong Rob? 😉

Comment by Charles Edward Frith (@charlesfrith)

Hahaha … yes, basically that’s it … both in terms of what ended up happening and the fact this blog is the equivalent of Jersey Shore. Or worse [or better, dependent on your POV] the Geordie Shore of blogs.

I have no reason why no one commented on your Jimmy Saville revelations … maybe it’s just because people like taking the piss out of me whereas they just respect you. So no, you’re not doing it wrong. I am.

Comment by Rob

You’re too kind. I only found out about Jersey Shore recently as I heard about the mix of scripted and constructed reality and I’m interested in using it for a film which I’m going to order and command to be a piece of viral/sticky whatever. Anyway I looked at Jersey Shore Youtube clips today and all I can say is MTV used to be a groovy experience in the early 90’s. This middle age thing is both funny and preposterous and cause for a little tear to fall from time to time.

Comment by Charles Edward Frith (@charlesfrith)

I’m not too kind, I’m sadly too aware of my own deficiencies, ha! And forget Jersey Shore, seriously Geordie Shore is a whole other World.

Comment by Rob

If he changes the lyrics to panic to “hang the planner” then you know you made an impression.

Comment by Bazza

I didn’t know what you were talking about until I did some googling and found ‘Panic’ is actually the title of that song with the ‘hang the …’ lyric in it. Until then, I always thought that was the name of the song. Thank god I didn’t reference that. At least I hope I didn’t.

Comment by Rob

You’d better study if you want to be live up to your Smiths biggest fan label.

Comment by Bazza

So am I lumped with “The people who liked this individual”?
I so I’m not bothered, “We will haunt you when we laugh”

Comment by northern

I’m not sure what I enjoy the most, the fact you will have invested time in background investigation of your nemesis or the fact you’re forced to admit he’s alright – this from The Boy with a Thorn in His Side

Next you’ll be telling us that Rosser Reeves was misunderstood.

Comment by northern

Look, I know you’re utterly enjoying this and reveling in my misery, but this has all been a bit too much for one person to take in, so please give me a few days to come to terms with it all, because I don’t know if I can handle such a shock to my system. I am on blood pressure medication remember!

On the positive, when you wrote ‘The boy with a thorn in his side’, I thought you were talking about this:

So while my opinion about the singer might have changed, my brain is holding it’s ground in what it will – and will not – accept into my musical memory.

Comment by Rob

As it happens I like this.

If it’s any small comfort, I once met Amanda Holden in very unusual cirmumstances and had to admit she was not only lovely, but very kind
While lovely John Hannah actually turned out to be a twat – and can’t pronounce ‘food’ to save his bloody life

Comment by northern

My mate snogged Amanda Holden. He said she was “very nice”. And I never really trusted that John Hannah guy … weird eyes.

But none of this matters, because this isn’t about them … but me and my now shattered childhood.

Comment by Rob

All you need now is to discover that Bono ghost wrote Bohemian Rhapsody

Comment by northern


Comment by Bazza

This brought a much needed smile to my face Robert. Thank you.

Comment by Mary Bryant

I won’t hear a bad word said against Bobo.

Comment by Adrian Elton

[…] has made the odd nice comment about Queen or maybe it’s because Morrissey made me realise my teenage years of angst were utterly pointless, but I seem to have suddenly become quite smitten with all things ‘The Smiths’ as of […]

Pingback by First I Was Nice To Morrissey, Now I’m Being Nice To Johnny Bloody Marr … | The Musings Of An Opinionated Sod [Help Me Grow!]

[…] is was my ultra-nemesis, Morrissey – though he seems to behaving like a twat […]

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