Gabberissue #12: Booze

Gabberissue #12: Booze

Words by Siobhan Fitzgerald. Illustration by Jess Ramsey.

It’s Sunday morning, and I am writing this through a foggy head. The fog isn’t from a hangover—with a 3-year-old and 6-month-old at home I don’t have much opportunity for that any more. It’s Dry July in our house, and almost a week into a detox I’m still in the liver-expelling-stuff phase, not the feeling awesome phase. Seems like that couple(ish) of glasses of wine when the kids go to bed are worse for me than I’d care to admit. 

My drinking habits are mild compared to when I was in my 20s (and early 30s) (and mid 30s pre-children). As a junior working in a small Sydney agency, my regular late nights working back were accompanied by bottles of wine, and weekends were in a whole different league. I remember a dawning awareness that my habits weren’t particularly healthy, and suggested we take some of the drinks money and put it into lunchtime fitness sessions—I was laughed out of the Monday morning WIP. At least no one threw a wheel of brie at me.

Soft cheese aside, none of the above will surprise any of you because this is an advertising blog and if you work in advertising you know it’s an industry with a drinking problem. Contributions to this issue are telling—some in their anonymity, others in their honesty, and even a few in their absence (pulled for fear of incriminating agencies). So why do we drink so much?

David Ponce de Leon quit drinking nine years ago. He has some powerful insights into our drinking culture, as well as an offer to help those who want to escape it.

Perhaps the extreme highs and lows that are part of our everyday life encourage excess drinking, reflects this month’s Gift the Gabberer, M&C Saatchi CCO and president of AWARD Cam Blackley. Or maybe creative souls need respite from the noise, as poet and copywriter Darby Hudson muses in his honest self-reflective essay.

With a love of drink like ours, it’s a shame that booze advertising isn’t what it used to be. If you’ve lost inspiration on your next booze brief, you can turn to this handy Alco-Ad Maker by The Animals creative partner Angust Williams.  Beer briefs mightn’t be as exciting as they once were, but at least beer just keeps getting better. In Life on the Other Side Nathan Lennon and David Gibson of Hawkes Brewing Co share their inspiring story of a move from advertising to craft beer.

No matter how good the beer, it should be a sometimes thing, not a constant—and if you need an excuse not to drink, here’s a bunch that have been prepared for you by Becca Duggans and Fee Millist of DDB Sydney. Or you could just say you’re on a juice cleanse, and get your Creative Juices flowing—this by Dan Dean and Isabel Evans of Fenton Stephens, who are also this month’s Team Talk.

Personally I’m already sick of juice. If I ever go out again I may head to The Dén, the concept bar for ad creatives.

Reckon they’ll serve mocktails?

A sobering perspective: five minutes with David Ponce de Leon

A sobering perspective: five minutes with David Ponce de Leon