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Fri Nov 9, 2012, 04:49 AM

'IT'S NOT WORTH IT': Ad Exec's Brutal Rant Before He Died Of Cancer Is Absolutely Chilling

http://www.businessinsider.com/its-not-worth-it-linds-reddings-short-lesson-in-perspective-2012-11


Linds Redding, owner of The Department Of Motion Graphics

***SNIP

The screed addresses the existential problem at the center of anyone's career in advertising: Can you marry art and commerce and be fulfilled as a human being?


Linds Redding
Redding concludes the answer is no. His story could apply to anyone's job, in any industry. It's sobering stuff. Here's an excerpt of the most brutal bits (you can read the full essay here.)
And hereís the thing.

It turns out I didnít actually like my old life nearly as much as I thought I did. I know this now because I occasionally catch up with my old colleagues and work-mates. They fall over each other to enthusiastically show me the latest project theyíre working on. Ask my opinion. Proudly show off their technical prowess (which is not inconsiderable.) I find myself glazing over but politely listen as they brag about whoís had the least sleep and the most takeaway food. ďI havenít seen my wife since January, I canít feel my legs any more and I think I have scurvy but another three weeks and weíll be done. Itís got to be done by then The clientís going on holiday. What do I think?Ē

What do I think?

I think youíre all fucking mad. Deranged. So disengaged from reality itís not even funny. Itís a fucking TV commercial. Nobody gives a shit.


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Reply 'IT'S NOT WORTH IT': Ad Exec's Brutal Rant Before He Died Of Cancer Is Absolutely Chilling (Original post)
xchrom Nov 2012 OP
SubgeniusHasSlack Nov 2012 #1
SmileyRose Nov 2012 #2
a la izquierda Nov 2012 #3
onethatcares Nov 2012 #4
Skidmore Nov 2012 #5
Anthony McCarthy Nov 2012 #6
closeupready Nov 2012 #7
randome Nov 2012 #12
Egalitarian Thug Nov 2012 #13
closeupready Nov 2012 #14
Egalitarian Thug Nov 2012 #16
closeupready Nov 2012 #18
Egalitarian Thug Nov 2012 #20
hfojvt Nov 2012 #15
closeupready Nov 2012 #17
pipewrench Nov 2012 #8
Doctor_J Nov 2012 #9
KurtNYC Nov 2012 #10
mick063 Nov 2012 #11
TalkingDog Nov 2012 #19

Response to xchrom (Original post)

Fri Nov 9, 2012, 04:55 AM

1. Sobering reality check.

 

My wife and I have a similar crisis of conscience weekly regarding our careers. We like what we do but are concerned about what we must give up in order to have the levels of commitment required to retain our positions.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Fri Nov 9, 2012, 06:07 AM

2. Thank you for this.

In my life, the timing was perfect.

Thanks.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Fri Nov 9, 2012, 06:28 AM

3. Perfect timing for me as well.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Fri Nov 9, 2012, 08:07 AM

4. if we knew what was really important,

there'd be a shortage of fishing poles.(or knitting needles, or beach chairs)

And now that I'm getting ready to get out of the race, I'm gonna help with that shortage.

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Response to onethatcares (Reply #4)

Fri Nov 9, 2012, 08:13 AM

5. You got it. The United States of Ferenghi

has sucked the soul out of so many.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Fri Nov 9, 2012, 08:16 AM

6. Commercial art

 

gain the world and lose your soul.

I wonder, considering Satchi's fame for promoting the major bull shit art movement of our times, Young Brit Ert, why he didn't clue on to the spiritual vapidity of that world earlier. I'd have thought "Sensation" might have been a bit of a clue.

Oh well, death bed repentance is better than dying without understanding your life.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Fri Nov 9, 2012, 08:20 AM

7. Sad but to be a bit the contrarian:

>>But what I didnít do, with the benefit of perspective, is anything of any lasting importance. At least creatively speaking. Economically I probably helped shift some merchandise. Enhanced a few companies bottom lines. Helped make one or two wealthy men a bit wealthier than they already were.<<

Well, good sir, that's called "a job". "Work". It's what pays the bills and helps to get you from point A (entering the work force) to point B (retirement). Sounds like you had some fun along the way, so it was a good life.

Certainly, a better life than workers who do jobs like the jobs worked in, for example, "Nickeled and Dimed".

I'm sad that you died WAY too young and left behind many colleagues who respected your thoughts, and a family that loved you. And I'm also sad that you didn't appreciate the fact that you DID do important things, valuable work. RIP, Mr. Redding.

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Response to closeupready (Reply #7)

Fri Nov 9, 2012, 09:48 AM

12. Good points.

And he could have chosen a different job, too. He could have stepped away. Hopefully, his video will inspire others to re-evaluate what they do for a living.

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Response to closeupready (Reply #7)

Fri Nov 9, 2012, 10:24 AM

13. You read the article and completely missed the point. n/t

 

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Response to Egalitarian Thug (Reply #13)

Fri Nov 9, 2012, 10:33 AM

14. Don't ever become a lawyer.

"Your Honor, the prosecution is wrong. The defense rests."

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Response to closeupready (Reply #14)

Fri Nov 9, 2012, 10:56 AM

16. You may have noticed that this is not a courtroom.

 

If you can't see the point there is little point in trying to explain it.

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Response to Egalitarian Thug (Reply #16)

Fri Nov 9, 2012, 11:03 AM

18. Ignored.

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Response to closeupready (Reply #18)

Fri Nov 9, 2012, 02:19 PM

20. Oh my, how will I ever cope...

 

You still don't get it. Hopefully you will before you yourself are facing death.

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Response to closeupready (Reply #7)

Fri Nov 9, 2012, 10:35 AM

15. I personally find many commercials to be entertaining

I was just making a joke about the discount doublecheck and my brother laughed.

However, given the time they seem forced to put into these projects, I am not sure it IS a better job.

What he describes is a symptom of the entire working class - our willingness to give our WHOLE life instead of demanding something more. To say NO to our employers. NO I am not gonna give my entire life. NO I will not work 24/7. That maybe there should be life BEFORE retirement.

This guy did not live long enough to retire, apparently, and is asking himself, why did I give so much to my job? To my employers?

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Response to hfojvt (Reply #15)

Fri Nov 9, 2012, 11:02 AM

17. As do I - for the second time this week,

I'm going to plug "Your Money Or Your Life" - Vickie Robins' book was on this very topic. Your job is not a charitable pursuit - you are exchanging your life for material compensation - ergo, "your money or your life", i.e., in pursuing one, you sacrifice the opportunity for the other.

I guess he never read that book, or only woke up when it was too late to do things differently. To some extent, we essentially ALL reach a career point when we go, "what am I doing with my life? Why I am sacrificing it for this?"

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Fri Nov 9, 2012, 08:24 AM

8. Thanks

That was chilling and very sobering.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Fri Nov 9, 2012, 09:28 AM

9. Somewhere along the way, I think during Reagan's rule, the US jumped the track

We went from near the top in quality of life to almost the bottom.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Fri Nov 9, 2012, 09:38 AM

10. "Don't postpone joy."

A friend of mine had terminal cancer at age 23. He had just signed a recording contract which was to be the start of his career but instead he spent the next 9 months doing chemo. He told us all (we were 23-ish also at the time) that he was lucky in a way because he knew pretty much when he would die and once he accepted that it was enormously liberating.

Many of us think that we will write that book, spend more time with family, get some decent sleep...on and on,, some day. But we are betting that we will live long enough and be healthy enough to make it to "some day."

He was in remission for a while but he knew that when the decline came again there would be no stopping it. We talked about what he wanted to do in his last days. His most sincere wish was to wake others out of the stupor of wage slavery. This was in Los Angeles and car chases were quite the rage for local TV "news" so he proposed this -- get a beater car and announce to the news media that someone was going to drive off a cliff by PCH at say 10:30 in the morning. He knew the image of the car going off the cliff would be sensational, death soaked and therefore irresistable to the blood thirsty media. It would be reproduced in print, re-run on the 6pm news and the 11 pm news and again in clip shows. And he believed that in doing this, he could get one message out that he felt people really needed to hear because painted on both sides of the car in big clear letters would be:

"Don't postpone joy."

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Fri Nov 9, 2012, 09:43 AM

11. At 54, I have adopted a new philosphy

 

Let the young folks do it.

They are full of piss and vinegar. Their career is ascending. They wish to prove themselves. They seek recognition. They seek job self satisfaction.

Nothing wrong with any of that. Have at it..

It is all I can do to remain focused anymore. The only thing that really keeps me in the game is life experience and sharing it with those that seek it.

A co worker shares the same circumstance. We share a similar outlook. We share common humor.

We call it the "fire hydrant syndrome".

You go over to the fire hydrant and sniff it. If it doesn't smell like you, then lift your leg, piss all over it, and make it smell like you.

We give each other a wink and a nod whenever we see someone "lifting their leg". That was once us and we sort of laugh at it now.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Fri Nov 9, 2012, 11:46 AM

19. Yep, I 'splain this to my art students every semester. Once you get out of this classroom and into

the parking lot, nobody gives a fuck about your art.

Live a life.

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