Actually to be absolutely precise about it, today is my 31st Anniversary in the advertising industry.
I started at a place called Marschalk--the Jewish version of McCann, back on December 9th, 1984. I had an inside office with an IBM Selectric II, diagonally across from the agency's Executive Creative Director.
Things were different back then.
There were still in New York, mid-sized shops with between 200-300 people. That was the size agency many of my peers were looking for. Big enough to have big national accounts. Not so big that you were an anonymous cog.
Such agencies, Leber Katz, Scali, Ally, Ammirati, Levine, Geers Gross, Geer DuBois, Calet Hirsch and Spector, Compton, Dancer, Warwick, Kenyon & Eckhardt, were merged out of existence by about 1995. And the few shops that remained either grew bigger and bigger--vast multinational agglomerations, or smaller and boutiquey.
31 years later:
I still love the business.
I like the people, young and old.
I like the puzzle of solving client problems.
I love "the idea." The moment when a thought becomes something.
I love writing copy--even, for the most part--addressing feedback.
I even like the pressure of stern deadlines where your head feels in a vise.
Most of all, I still like seeing an ad I wrote in the paper, or on TV.
Of course, there are things I despise as well.
But this is my anniversary and I want it to be a happy one.
So no need to go into that.