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This review is from: Confessions of a Mad Man (Kindle Edition)
George Parker has a lived a Hemingway-like life in Advertising. He even looks like the guy, from the grizzled beard right on down to the even more grizzled liver.
So it's nice to hear that there was a time when life in Advertising wasn't always about wage freezes and downsizing.
"Confessions" is about a lot of things: It's about breaking into the business. It's about surviving the business. And it's about finding a way to get the hell out of the business. It's also about the most enjoyable book you'll ever read on the subject.
The thing that makes this book so much fun to read is George himself. He's the first to admit the advertising business has, and never has had much integrity. No, what gets his goat is that money-grubbing holding companies have ransacked the very industry that allowed him, nay, paid him dearly to booze, womanize, travel -- and when he wasn't doing that -- create great advertising for a living.
George also takes no prisoners. His assault on a business that has been pillaged by rich and greedy bean counters who have more in common with flesh eating bacteria than they do with actual humans is a thing of beauty.
At the same time, George's sympathies for the Creatives that are sacrificed by gross mismanagement and narcissism are real. And he's genuinely sad that they will never have the outrageous (and oft times illicit) experiences that he had coming up through the ranks. That's the softer side of George -- if calling the Chairman of one of advertising's largest holding companies, The Poisoned Dwarf, can be considered soft.
All in all, this is a great, entertaining read for anyone in the industry or outside. Oh, and if by chance you find yourself skewered in this book, my advice is to just suck it up and move on. There's no insult or profanity you can hurl at him that he hasn't at some point already hurled at himself -- and more colorfully, I might add.
Confessions of a Mad Man