THE RISE AND RISE OF THE STUPID PEOPLE

By Hans Ebert
@hanseberthk

“There’s something happening, but you don’t know what it is, do you, Mister Jones?” Dylan sang those lines years ago without realising just how many “Mister Joneses” have been given a free pass to run free in so many industries.

Look at what has been allowed to happen in the theatre of absurd in American politics. How on earth did a businessman who has declared for bankruptcy so many times, never paid taxes, insults women, and is some television reality personality, who is equal parts schoolyard bully and buffoon, get to a point where he can single-handedly blow the constitution to bits by threatening to throw his toys out of his pram if he’s not named the next President Of The United States?

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SO THEY SAY IT’S YOUR BIRTHDAY

By Hans Ebert
@hanseberthk

It was my birthday yesterday, and as usual, she called to wish me Happy Birthday. But did she really mean it? You tend to think she doesn’t, and flip it off as her Christian politeness and just two hollow words that lead nowhere except for the awkwardness. “Hi, Happy Birthday!” Thanks. And now what? Where’s it leading? Nowhere new. It’s just one of those necessary niceties of life. At this juncture in my life, it’s unnecessary.

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OPENING THE DOOR TO SUITE 1616

By Hans Ebert
@hanseberthk

“Aiiyah, I know Mr Hans. Not like before. Very much boring.” It was a longtime staffer at the Grand Hyatt hotel in Hong Kong agreeing with me when I told him I had to flee the hotel’s Champagne Bar after suffering from an acute attack of terminal boredom coupled with major depression to see what was such a popular meeting place with a loyal group of regulars become more like Le Rue Morgue and shunned with everyone looking for greener pastures. But these days, greener pastures almost everywhere in the world are more of a whiter shade of pale. And listening to all the reminiscing about the “good old days” is as maudlin as hearing Mary Hopkin sing how “Those Were The Days”. What the hell happened to Mary Hopkin, anyway? And the good old days? What happened to just about everything that made living easy and the cotton high?

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BACK TO THE BASICS

By Hans Ebert
@hanseberthk

It’s the technique not the idea. It’s something my mentor in advertising- Keith Reinhard- used to make all his creative directors understand, especially during a time when when the art director was more interested in how “beautiful” a print ad should look like and the copywriter was asked to shorten the headline to fit the layout. It was also the time when there was an almost overnight generation of commercials directors and editors who, so influenced by MTV, wanted television commercials to look like music videos.

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THE TECHNIQUE IS NOT THE IDEA AND WHAT HAPPENED TO A MORE SIMPLE LIFE?

By Hans Ebert
@hanseberthk

It’s just not good enough. Nothing’s any longer good enough. Even most women are no longer good enough. Neither is anything around us. What’s made us take this backward step? Has technology made things better? Or have we allowed it to take us wherever it wanted to that we now want to turn everything around and start all over again because we realise that new isn’t better and we have no idea where we are and what we’re doing?

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WHY WE ALL NEED SOMEONE TO LEAN ON

By Hans Ebert
@hanseberthk

I once had a girl or should I say, she once had me. Wait: I once lived with a woman not that long ago who was on Repeat that “no one listens to lyrics anymore”. There have been songwriting partners over the recent years who’ve said the same thing, then change lyrics you’ve written into something to fit the melody line without letting you know and nonchalantly mention that it doesn’t matter if the line makes sense, that no one cares and how well it fits the chords. Yeah, but that’s not what musical partnerships are about and certainly not how the songwriting teams from Tin Pan Alley or the Brill Building like Carole King and Gerry Goffin, below, went about writing songs. It was a partnership on a creative and business level.

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INSPIRATION AND FINDING YOUR YOKO

By Hans Ebert
@hanseberthk

We all need it. It helps pick us up to continue this journey with a real sense of purpose as opposed to just going through the motions. It shakes us off self-induced lethargy that leaves us waiting for things to present themselves to us. It makes us want to not just do it, but do whatever it is so that it is the best it can be. Anything done in a half-arsed manner is tremendously unsatisfactory. You’ve cheated yourself. This is why we need Inspiration.

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JOHN LENNON AND LIFE LESSONS

By Hans Ebert
@hanseberthk

We don’t know it, but we’re letting things get away from us. Like being stuck inside of Mobile with the Memphis Blues Again, we’re getting stuck in the trivialities served up and letting life’s priorities slide. We’re not looking out for Number One. We’re more concerned about what others are doing and which have absolutely no return of investment on our time. And while time keeps ticking, ticking, ticking into the future, we’re wallowing in the past and often leading vicarious lives. We’re everywhere and nowhere, baby. Just listen to the inane conversations that we join in. Why? What’s the point? Where’s any of this going to lead? It’s drunk talk even when sober.

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HAVE WE TAUGHT OUR CHILDREN AND OURSELVES WELL?

By Hans Ebert
@hanseberthk

Some of you might remember listening to “Teach Your Children” by Crosby, Stills and Nash. Yes, it was back in the day, but those sentiments probably apply more to today than before. And that’s because everything points to us having done a pretty crappy job of teaching our children. Either that or we’ve done a bloody terrible job of teaching ourselves right from wrong and which horses to back and which ones are non-starters.

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WHEN WORLDS COLLIDE

By Hans Ebert
@hanseberthk

Here’s the problem: I really don’t have time for nor do I like many people these days. Blame social media for this. Like what happens when suffering from too much of anything, everyday we’re inundated with information overload. Of course, it’s a personal call whether to stay or to go, but even if there- wherever “there” is, for business reasons and part of one’s job responsibilities, there comes the time when one is drawn into incessant chatter from faceless entities who see themselves as self-styled experts on anything and everything until that little voice in your head asks, “Who ARE these people and what’s their curriculum vitae on, let’s say music?” Where are they getting their information from, and why should I engage in inane banter when you’re coming from a business point of view and they’re music fans- and nothing wrong with this- but who don’t even understand the dysfunctional relationship between the recording side of a music company and its publishing division?

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