Wednesday 6 February 2008

Blind leading the Blind

Some stories need little introduction. Some just need pretty pictures.

This needs both.

I guess when I shared with all my readers on Monday morning the now infamous Kathy Plath "I want to get re-elected" election advertisement flyer, you all asked the question, like I did when a resident sent it to me via email at 11:35pm last Sunday night.. Is this for real?

The emailer discovered it amongst her weekend letterbox junk mail. There it was between the Big W and Myer's catalogue. Did you know that Shrek 3 is now only $18.99?

I, at first, was rather suspicious. It's in my nature. It's how any mature person should be when watching the sux, I mean six o'clock news. How often when you see a story or read something in the illustrious Cairns Post do you ask questions to yourself? Or do you simply say "Wow.. isn't that incredible" or silly, or whatever you thought about the news as it was presented.

So I went back to this resident, whom I've never met, and the offer of a Moccha Soy low fat latte with organic milk is still on. I asked if the flyer was legit, via email, as no telephone number was supplied. Because on closer inspection, it looked a bit too dodgy. I thought I was being set up. I imagined it may have been an email from Fishery Falls - trying to hook the big bad blogger from the burbs.

But alas, I was assured it was the real McCoy. So I published it and probably gave Kathy the best press and name recognition she's had in a long time, for all the wrong reasons. I suspect she gained two hundred votes from my expose, and lost another thousand.

I questioned how Kathy could have put together such a flyer. I mean if you want a job, any job, and your "CV" looked like this, would you deserve it? If you were going for an interview, let's say at any Accor hotel in the region, to head their Sales and Marketing team, which pays around $60,000-80,000 pa, and you presented a flyer like Kathy did to her prospective voters, do you think you should be awarded the role?

You see, Councillor Kathy Plath, like 24 other locals, are vying for an $88,000 a year job. The Mayor will get around $150,000. You'd expect these people could do a lot better than this as a "CV".

I have since learn't that I owe Kathy a sincere and heartfelt apology for publishing her leaflet on Monday. I'm now reliably informed she had almost nothing to do with it. Nor did Big Kev, the Unity party's head honco. Kevin put the word out that his candidates should get on with doing their own newsletters. He teamed them up in pairs. That's what we did in Boy Scouts when we went hiking. It's a safety thing. You know, safety in numbers. Kind of like why policemen have numbers on their shoulders, just in case they get lost and can be returned home. We called it the buddy system.

So who did Kathy "buddy up" with? Kathy Plath (hence-forth known as Kathy Getting, as you'll soon learn) teamed up with Councillor Freebody. Yes, you guessed it, the one that's a whizz on the old emails. Privately, Paul calls me the Kiwi Fruit! Dunno why, maybe because they're tasty, nutritious, and full of goodness, but the heart is soft?

According to the latest whiz-bang effort from the Freebody Design and Publications Corporation, Kathy and Paul are having more than an affair - as they are both sporting the same last name - Getting. Paul and Kathy Getting. And Getting on with the job they have been.

Paul's flyer was created at the same time as Kathy's. There were a few differences, and you should open up Kathy's here to compare the likeness. I used to love those Sp0t the Difference quizzes, didn't you?

I loved Kathy now infamous "crapping" photo. However Paul's is special too. On so many levels.

In the first photo on the left, he's yet to start that Betty Baxter Weight Loss programme, and seems like an bad advert for Morgan Spurlock's Super Size Me. However on the right hand pic, standing at the Woree Swimming Pool, he's an amazing 39 kgs smaller! Oh, the magic of Window's pre-installed Paint programme, with that easy re-sizing tool.

You should have been in your Speedos Paul. We would have called you Paul Speedobody.

Do you know how you folk really make our job so easy when you produce sub-standard marketing crap like this? We expect better of our highest paid elected public officials in the city.

There's 68 graphic designers in Cairns and you produced these on your home computer after a Château Cardboard 2007 vintage? I think I'm more embarrsed than you to tell you the truth.

Paul and Kathy, you could also have made a call to Cairns State High School, as I know they have a great computer graphics and design class and any Year 10 or 11 student, I'm sure would gladly donate you some "help me get elected" time. You can telephone them on 4050 3033, during normal school hours. If you don't you might get a detention from Uncle Kevin.

What's a bet Kevin will give you all a well-deserved whiplashing at the "Come to Jesus" meeting you've all been summoned to this Friday. And rightly so.

I'm shocked that Unity's hired marketing expert, Andrew Griffiths hasn't got some form of strategic control over the election material before it hits the presses. When I chatted to him over at the other Knob area last week, at the Edge cafe, I congratulated him for his handywork on Kev's billboards. Andrew quickly denied any involvement. He seemed as shocked as Deputy Mayor, Terry "Factman" James, when learning his name was on the controversial CEC/LHL-sponsored billboards.

Now let me not throw stones completely in the glasshouse. We all have our weaknesses. Mine's Chocolate. Oh, and ... well, I'm not going to share that here! My point is, if you don't have a certain skill, no big deal - seek it from someone who does. I know Paul Freebody probably has a great deal more pingers than I do, and could easily afford a graphic designer. They cost around a $100 a hour - the good ones do anyway, eh Danny?

I have to say, and I do generally support Cairns 1st to oust this current mob, their marketing and advertising is well-thought out. It's consistent and every candidate is considering the uniqueness of what they're contributing to their own division whilst subscribing to a common strategic approach. Shit, that sounded like a politician! Maybe I should run for Council. Wonder what Division I should pick? I've a couple of weeks to get my nomination in.... hhhmmm.

That's more, a whole lot more, than you can say about the now well-deserved title of the Dis Unity Party. Never mind, it's their party and they can cry if they want to.

So, without further ado, here's the 2nd leaflet in the series. Pour yourself a cheap red and position yourself close to the floor in an attempt to not disable your funny bone.


Anonymous said...

This story gets better and better Michael. Why don't you simply let the unity councillors writes these stories.. would save you a lot of time to get on with real stuff like digging dirt on Val and Berwick!!

Anonymous said...

I think the Carlson twins should watch their spelling too. "Why don't you simply let the the unity (no capital) councillors WRITES these stories.... What the...? Must have used the same spell checker as they did for the pamphlets.

Anonymous said...

Oh get off your high horse man!

This is a freakin blog where you are just hacking 'sms stylez' to get your point across.. not a piece of valuable promotional material that's going to be the one thing people read that may or may not get you back into your 88k/y job. Not that Paul has much to worry about. I personally like the guy! Spelling errors and family first-esque motivation aside!