Once again, I have been inundated with vitriolic, anonymous emails, tweets and envelopes laced with Anthrax, all complaining bitterly about this year’s Loerie Awards. Chris Moerdyk is relieved the Loeries take place in Cape Town.
By the simple process of looking at the email headers, Twitter handles and postmarks on the envelopes, it did not take me long to work out that every single one of these missives came from shops, bars, restaurant and hotels in Margate.
Which is of course, the holiday resort on the KwaZulu-Natal South Coast where the Loerie awards were briefly held up until a few years ago and which is the absolute favourite destination for people from places like Benoni and Rayton.
Under no circumstances could Margate be in any way associated with creativity.
So, for those dissenters, let me explain, again.
Cape Town is where the Loeries should be. A natural home.
Of course I’m biased. We’re all biased. Bias is South Africa’s top national pastime. Bias is even more popular than killing people for supporting other political parties.
I am thrilled about the Loeries taking place in Cape Town. So, a big up to the Loerie committee for showing such wisdom, intellect and sheer unadulterated class in their decision-making.
Thank heavens that Margate is now just a bad memory. A lapse of good judgement. A painful wrong turn into the nether regions of leisure. Advertising did not deserve the indignity of Margate. Which, for very good reason is referred to on the Cape Flats as “jou ma se gat.”
And let’s face it, how insane was the notion that Margate could become the “Cannes of South African advertising”.
I must say, I tried for a couple of years to find some sort of connection between Cannes and Margate and all I could come up with was that they both had a lot of dog poop on their beaches.
OK, so Cape Town also has dog poop but at least its all the by-product of superior, very expensive, odourless Vet’s Choice, nourishing pellets with added vitamins and real gravy. Unlike those mountainous doodies on Margate beach that result from a mixed diet of seagull guano, braai leftovers and putrefied cane rat.
Before that it was Sun City, which was OK in its day. But, it wore thin after a while. Same old same old. A bit of a painful schlep from Joburg. Golf with the old farts and shooters with the kids. Nothing changed. And then the Marketing Federation of Southern Africa stuffed it up completely by trying to organise it themselves while at the same time running their own organisation into bankruptcy.
But, like All Bran, Cape Town has got it all. It has got great weather. Oh, yes it has! Just think about it. When the South Easter blow hard enough to turn a copywriter’s earring into a paperclip, it means not having to worry about going to the beach, playing golf, hiking or cycling but rather being able to sit inside getting mortared on the fruits of the vine. And it’s those fruits of the vines by the way, that make all ads look like Loerie winners and clients look intelligent. South Easters also blow up women’s skirts thus creating one of the region’s most popular pastimes. Looking.
There are a few things advertising people need to remember about Cape Town, however. That is apart from the fact that Cape Town agencies have generally won all the awards in the past few years and that the city is this year’s design capital of the world. The WORLD. And of course that it has some very, very good rugby players and cricketers. And golfers and surfers. And humility.
But, it does have a bloody great mountain in the middle of it which means that taking the direct route to get from A to B is sometimes difficult not to mention dangerous especially if you are going from the Waterfront to Sandy Bay in a drunken stupor. That first step off the back of Table Mountain is a lulu and could cause you to spill your drink.
Getting directions in Cape Town is also tricky. Stopping your car at a green traffic light and shouting, “Hey you, where’s Sandy Bay” will be met with “Jou Ma se fokkin Sandy Bay.” This does not mean turn right at the top of Kloof Nek.
Bear in mind that all requests for anything in the Cape from the locals will be prefaced with something to do with your mother’s most private anatomical parts followed by a string of invective. And sometimes an answer.” The more you drink the more you will understand.
Then there is Sandy Bay. For those advertising people who really and truly believed that nothing existed outside of Johannesburg other than Margate, Sandy Bay is a beach where everyone goes around with no clothes on. It is open to anyone who is prepared to take off his or her clothes and not stare. It is very bad form to take cameras with telephoto lenses the length of whales willies and it also considered very poor taste for men to allow themselves to become sexually aroused and then run up and down the beach shouting “wee-woo-weee-woo-wee-woo.”
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