I’m a messy thinker. I like it that way. I renamed this blog #messythink because that’s how I operate, and I’m pretty comfortable with that.
What I don’t like is that my messy thinking doesn’t always work with others. Don’t get me wrong — I’m not saying everyone should conform to how I do things. I guess I just wish there was a better compromise than the one I always get stuck with.
Supposedly, thinking differently is praised in our culture, and not just given Apple’s iconic bit of sloganeering. We hear this stuff all the time, how what’s in short supply is some otherness in one’s thinking process.
If you’re looking at job postings, especially in advertising/marketing, you hear a lot of this kind of stuff.
We’re looking for self-starters with different perspectives.
We’re on the hunt for people with new ideas!
We’re not interested in ‘been-there, done-that.’
Et cetera, et cetera.
Seems to me the whole “untraditional thinker” thing is kind of a con, a fairy tale, a pipe dream.
Think about it. Our culture chews up and spits out the untraditional — untraditional, outside-the-box creativity is almost always at odds with popular culture, or popular behaviour. Think of it in terms of, say, television. Shows like Two and a Half Men and The Big Bang Theory get feted as “TV’s top comedy!” when they’re nothing but formulaic paint-by-numbers shows that reinforce a whole bunch of things that aren’t true. (And they’re not supposed to be true, or good. All that matters is that they play in Peoria.) Shows like Arrested Development get canceled, and shows like Community struggle to find an audience.
For every amazing thing in the marketing, advertising, branding and other “creative” industries we see and celebrate there are a hundred million bits of by the book. I believe this, but I’m open to other opinions.
If you’re a creative in marketing/advertising or another industry, what do you think about this?
This is the seventeenth post in my #30posts challenge. Don’t know what that is? Read this.