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

The Beauty Of Madness …

Last week, Nike dropped an ad.

A 3+ minute ad.


Well yes they are because it’s the most magical 3+ minute ad you will see in a long, long time.

I know you might say I’m biased because [1] it’s Nike [2] it’s by Wieden and [3] my beloved ex-collegue, Paula Bloodworth, worked on it … but I’m not saying it for those reasons, I’m saying it because it’s sheer gloriousness.


You watch it and you are sucked in. You’re smiling, laughing, nodding, relating.

Whether it’s how outsiders see different parts of London to the madness some young athletes have to go through to be noticed.

There’s so much to love about it … though I have to say my favorite parts are definitely the female footballer, the ice-hockey player and the guy at the end on the bike who swipes the ball away.

Brilliant casting, writing, everything.

An ad that shows how great advertising can be when it’s injected with madness, authenticity and originality. Not to mention fun. Not in terms of what the ad is – though it’s full of that – but in terms of feeling how much fun everyone had making it.

An ad that not only shows the elasticity of NIKE’s brand voice, but their ability to be culturally authentic while staying true to who the brand actually is.

Right there is why Wieden is so fucking good.

It’s not just that they’ve made an ad people around the World will love – even if they won’t understand it all – it’s that they’ve made an ad that people in London will truly get.

An ad that is for them.

About them.

Bursting with all the swagger, humour and contrast that makes that city what it is.

I’m sure they knew they had something special at the very beginning but when it started actually coming together, they must have got super excited.

And nervous.

I remember going through all those emotions when we were creating Blackcurrant Tango.

But as I’ve said before, the best feeling in adland is when you think a piece of your work is going to be either amazing or a disaster

Nothing in-between.

Because it means whatever happens, it’s going to make a statement.

And this ad does.

Without doubt it is my favorite NIKE spot in a while [acknowledging a huge amount of them of late have been extra good] and I’m so happy for all my friends who were a part of it.

In fact the only thing wrong is when they say ‘Nothing Beats A Londoner’ when we all know a Nottinghamer can.



Why Process Can Kill Potential …
January 24, 2018, 6:16 am
Filed under: A Bit Of Inspiration, Attitude & Aptitude, Chaos, Comment, Creativity, Culture, Cunning

Anyone who knows me knows I’m a big believer in chaos theory.Not, as you may be shocked to learn, because it validates my global-scale disorganization, but because I firmly believe chaos lets you create what order can’t.

Hell, I even based the whole of The Kennedys on this concept.

Anyway, while for some – the idea of this is basically professional kryptonite – there are others out there who believe in it’s power. One of the best is economist and journalist Tim Harford who wrote the brilliant book, Messy on the concept.

Of course, I am not advocating that all process is bad.

Hell, if I’m having an operation, I want the surgeon to follow the rules as carefully as they can … but the fact is, they only got to those rules because someone, at some point, decided to ignore the rules to explore what else is possible.

Hence my belief is that process is fine if we remember what we’re trying to achieve, but the moment the process is more important than the outcome we seek … then we have our priorities all wrong.

So as 2018 is still relatively fresh – I thought I’d leave you with 15 minutes 32 seconds of chaotic inspiration. Enjoy.