In my book Hey Whipple, Squeeze This, I propose that creativity is exactly like washing a pig. Because it’s messy. It has no rules. No clear beginning, middle, or end. It’s kind of a pain in the ass, and when you’re done you’re not sure if the pig is really clean or even why you were washing a pig in the first place.

A fellow professor, Tom Laughlon from the Advertising Department at FSU, agreed that washing a pig might make for a good lab experience in chaos and creativity. I extend my thanks to him and his students for this literalization of my metaphor.

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CREATIVE BRIEF: Wash a pig.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SARAH, JUNIOR ACCOUNT PERSON: Well, this seems obvious … I’ll just say, “Hey Porky, hit the suds.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ASHLEY, ACCOUNT PERSON: Mmmmm, he’s not going in. Are you sure a pool is the right approach?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CHAD, ART DIRECTOR: Yeah, my friend at Goodby did something like this. He said you just gotta … muscle it in.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ASHLEY: (sarcastically) Oh, perfect. See? I told you the pool idea sucked.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CHAD: No, we just gotta figure out how to keep the pig in the pool long enough to… COPYWRITER IN GREEN SHORTS SAYS: Dudes, seriously, what about my idea of feeding him Doritos? NICOLE (ACCOUNT PLANNER): Hey, I know! What if we used the hose …

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ASHLEY: Nicole, the hose idea is brill! COPYWRITER: Yeah, but if he gets out of the pool, my Doritos idea might….. JOHN (THE CREATIVE DIRECTOR, ARRIVING LATE, COMES IN FROM THE RIGHT): Hey, I see you guys love my hose idea.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TEAM: Yay, the pig is clean and…. No wait. CREATIVE DIRECTOR: I TOLD you Chad’s idea wouldn’t work.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

THE REST OF THE PITCH TEAM ARRIVES. (MEDIA TEAM CONFERENCES IN FROM UPPER PORCH, ON MUTE.) AGENCY PRESIDENT: Client’s in the elevators. Where the hell’s my clean pig?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CREATIVE DIRECTOR, TO COPYWRITER: Dude. You were right about the Doritos. They distract him. COPYWRITER: Let me just massage some of this copy here and….

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

JUNIOR ACCOUNT PERSON: I just love this -- a clean pig. It’s so counter-intuitive.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CUT TO THE PRESENTATION ROOM. AGENCY PRESIDENT: And there you have it, gentlemen. A clean pig. CLIENT: Did I say “pig”? Seriously? I meant to say warthog. Can you guys wash a warthog?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

CREATIVE TEAM REACTS WITH THEIR USUAL PROFESSIONALISM.