And the Award Goes To

The 40th Annual Abby Awards happened on Saturday and O&M won for the 10th year in a row.

Surprise, surprise, some would say.

Frankly, till last year, so did I. They bribe the judges, the Ad Club is partial to them, it's all politics, muscle power, intimidation, half the jury chairmen are from that agency, lookit them all dressed in black, lookit them making so much noise, lookit them, lookit them, lookit them.

This year, I shut up. I dressed in black, I sat with my team, I cheered when they won and I congratualted the winners. Partly because I'd seen the madness that goes behind sending entries. I'd faced the Battle of the Budget, had helped in the coordination and had nearly lost my head in the process.

But the other reason is this: loyalties change fast in Indian advertising. The people you boo today, you end up working with later. It came as a rude shock when it happened to me half a year back. I felt like a sellout. But the fact remains, loyalty is loyalty. Love it, hate it, you have to be loyal to your organisation. I'd like to think I am.

What I also am, is depressed. I didn't win any award. And reflected glory really isn't my thing. I'm going to rationalise and say that maybe a good kick in the pants was required. There, I can almost believe that.

As for the behind-the-scenes action, Now I have both sides of the story. Both the black and the white, as it were.

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