Eons ago, a college application essay asked what the greatest problem facing mankind was. I replied the mixed blessings of technology, arguing that while it had improved our lives in many ways, it had also produced big problems that our brightest minds couldn’t solve. Toxic chemicals. Nuclear proliferation. Decades later, these same challenges remain (global warming, anyone?) and technology is over complicating other things. Smartphones can start the oven during your commute. Cars can park and drive themselves. Refrigerators can read your email. Heck, the government is reading your email. It’s not quite The Jetstons or 1984, but we’re getting there.
Call me a Renaissance Man, but I still feel that less is usually more. When creating ads, my mantra is “when in doubt, take it out.” Because every time you remove an element from an ad, you’re reinforcing the power of what’s left behind. Good when competing for attention, but the principle works elsewhere as well. So here I celebrate a few favourite things that succeed by virtue of their simplicity:
The F-Bomb To paraphrase the great George Carlin, you gotta love its versatility. It’s an expletive (“Oh, fuck!”) A noun (“He’s a dumb fuck.”) A surrender (“We’re fucked.”) A verb (“Let’s fuck.”) A warning (“Don’t fuck with me.”) An insult (“You fucking fuck.”) An invitation (“Fuck me.”) A dismissal (“Fuck off.”) An anatomical challenge (“Go fuck yourself.”) And so much more. Do I use it too much? #@$% yeah.