By Hans Ebert
There are those who sit and plot and stew. And more often than not, they end up in a pickle. It’s called karma. One can only guess whoever’s idea it was to produce and place the crude ad below on the very day that the Melbourne Cup was to be run, huffed and puffed for months planning this moment to gloat and do The Dance Of The Demented Sherpas.
If the master plan was to rain on the parade of The Race That Stops A Nation, it not only backfired horribly, it revealed those behind it to be little people- tacky, tasteless and petty little people who wish to create a divisive industry despite all the glib talk about “reinventing” horse racing, how “horse racing must change with the times” and “welcoming competition”. Guess making a mountain out of a molehill with more holes in it than Swiss cheese requires lotsa experience in stirring and stirring and…
Having been the Executive Director of Creative Services for one of the biggest international advertising agencies where our biggest client was McDonald’s, we were taught all about competitive advertising.
One very key lesson drilled into us by our Chairman was to always Respect The Customer and Respect The Competition.
There was no respect here. This was a piece of crass communications that screamed out, Penis Envy and how size and money matter. The point is that by now, all this talk of size has run its course. It’s become a tired punchline to an even more tired joke.
This ad cheapened an already second rate product dressed up to be more than what it really is: horse racing’s answer to the Kardashians. As we all know, money can’t buy taste nor respect.
If one joins the dots it’s easy to see that whoever decided to approve the publishing of this advertisement on this particular date is not as one might have once thought to be delusional, but also insecure to the point of terminal paranoia.
There are those moments when I wish to cradle this person’s head in my hands and reassure them that everything will be alright and that they’re loved. But these moments are fleeting. They’re quickly replaced with a feeling of repulsion.
By the time the Melbourne Cup had been run, won and thousands were toasting Rekindling, jockey Corey Brown and his family, 24-year old Irish jockey-turned-trainer Joseph O’Brien and owner Lloyd Williams who’s not only about shaking his money maker, but using it- along with considerable passion, planning and skill- to make a race he has always deeply cared about winning-and this was his sixth win- bigger and better, nothing else mattered. And with his victory speech, he did more for racing in Victoria than any of its supposed leaders. But that’s a story for another day.
As for THAT ad, well, it became yesterday’s news in less than an hour though the stench lingers on. Singing the same old song with minor keys changes starts to wear thin very quickly. It becomes grating. And eventually, it sounds so offensive that even those who might have once supported it, tire of the clichés and repetition.
#MelbourneCup #CoreyBrown #JosephO’Brien #LloydWilliams #Everest