Friday after a week of Cannes. The streets are a mix of emotions. Literally. They caught a couple on the red carpet in front of the Palais going at it after having carefully placed their shoes a respectful distance. And all the press have to say about it here is how they managed a respectable 23 minutes in rather trying conditions.


But there are also those wandering the streets who expected more from the festival and were unpleasantly surprised to find “not even a bloody shortlist,” as the one somewhat drunken gentleman said. In his defense, we think he was actually just a homeless guy that was finishing what seemed to be a cheap brandy. But nothing is cheap here.


Discussing the streets of France with Gerry Human he relayed a story of how the previous night he was making his way across a zebra crossing with his lovely wife Caroline both of them in eveningwear. Just so you know, in France it’s kind of law to stop for pedestrians. But like everywhere, laws seem more like suggestions to rich people.


So the one car stopped and another sped up and slipped past almost knocking into the two of them. Naturally Gerry did the only thing a chivalrous man would do and kicked the car. Which then skidded to halt blocking traffic and spat out a yellow tracksuited, thin bearded, Marseille version of Ali G. Caroline sweetly continues walking and Gerry darts into a soiree at the Carlton making his way into a confused crowd of delegates and slips into conversation. LeThug came up to Caroline and  confronts her. A Full French Frontal. She politely declined his abuse in English and he set off to find Gerry. Caroline went into the hotel and got into the lift with Kim Kardashian’s bouncer. Safe. Gerry was mingling in the sea of suits and tracksuit guy ended up having just to leave them be. To skulk back onto the streets.


Whilst Gerry is telling us this story at the Ogilvy Party, Tammy Retter goes to find a chair nearby. The Gentleman from Ogilvy India says, “Listen to me. Are you pregnant? Are you Indian? Do you have a bag?” at which point everyone laughed together. But no, she didn’t get the chair. It’s a great mix of people here.


Sir Martin Sorrel didn’t came to the Ogilvy Party. He did however show up to interview Al Gore who is surprisingly funny actually. And smart. This was the only talk that went over time. Quite a bit actually. But Martin can do that you know, because he owns advertising and probably Cannes too. And you. The talk after him was by 123 west, a Canadian agency. They spoke on how to start your own agency. They had a list of points to indicate how you know it might be time to go off on your own. One of their points came up with a picture of Sir Martin Sorrel and they said when your holding company posted
$67million profits last year but you haven’t had a raise in two years. They did mention that they saw backstage and all is cool and actually, kudos to him for starting his own business. It’s working for him.


Essentially the streets of Cannes carry many weird and wonderful things, and like this story, one little thing leads to another and you wind down a completely unrelated path that ends somewhere you never expected. But you’re still in Cannes, in Advertsing and you’re laughing the whole time, enjoying every minute. Especially the minutes that include free booze, cause like we mentioned seventeen Euro (about R306) for a tequila is a bit much really. If you want to take your drinking seriously here you’re going to have to be homeless.


Lastly – the ubiquitous selfie stick! It has taken the world by storm. People in Cannes snapping here, snapping there! It has bred armies of people who roam around daily in pursuit of the perfect snap. You can’t walk down the street without having to stop just to allow someone to finish taking their selfie. Having said that though, if we put my frustrations aside, there is something to be said about an innovative product that works like a charm for those it’s targeted at. Someone saw a gap and found a way to make the human arm two times longer. A product had to start somewhere – and after spending six days in Cannes, we feel that we’ve seen many that may seem impossible to market, but are innovative and might one day make a difference in consumers’ lives. But alas, while we think the selfie stick looks ridiculous, we don’t blame those selfie stick carriers for wanting to snap away around the Croisette.


Until next time – au revoir.

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