Still Howling After All These Years

Welcome to Optimism reminds us of a passage from Where The Suckers Moon, the book that started all this for me.

Wieden was an unlikely creative star. His father Duke was one of the grand old men of Portland advertising…Dan was born on the cusp of the baby boom, in 1945. He was as rebellious as his father was establishment. An angular, perpetually energetic kid with a seemingly limitless capacity for wonderment… Dan wanted to be a writer but not like the writers at his dad’s agency. If these subordinated scribes were the best minds of his generation then they were, as Allen Ginsburg wrote, ‘ burned alive in their flannel suits on Madison Avenue amid blasts of leaden verse and the tanked-up clatter of the iron regiments of fashion.’ Dan would have none of it. Advertising is a whorish business, he told his friends. It’s a shell game. An easy way to make a living… Dan knew he wanted something more…

…and he found it.



About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. Today—after working for seven agencies in five states—I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.