Friday, August 17, 2007

City of dreams

I finally did it. I bought a T-shirt that says 'I LOVE NY'. It's not a shirt that you can actually wear in New York. It's like going to Amsterdam and wearing a shirt with a joint and the text: 'I went to Amsterdam and didn't remember it'. It's like wearing a shirt with 'Reeperbahn loves me' in Hamburg. It's like wearing a shirt with a print of a little pissing boy in Brussels. If you live there, you're not going to buy the shirt. But I couldn't help buying one of New York. It was only $ 2,50.

But when I got home I found out there´s more to this shirt than just the fact that groups of noisy, drunk tourists wear it. The actual I LOVE NY-logo was designed by an artist called Milton Glaser. He developed the logo in 1977 as part of an advertising campaign for the New York State (not just the city New York). Glaser agreed to do the work pro bono because he expected the campaign to last only a couple of months. But the design became a major success and has continued to be sold for years. Now every tourist shop in New York sells T-shirts with his logo on it.

On the Adobe site there's a video of Milton Glaser: One of his most interesting quotes: "If you can sustain your interest in what you're doing, you are an extremely fortunate person". I can certainly identify with that. It's not always easy to sustain your interest in what you're doing. Life, and society in general, learns us to stop dreaming. Learns us to get a job from 9 to 5, always stay on the surface and never stick out.

But some people want more than that. I noticed that New York is a city of dreamers. People want to stay here cost what cost. Even if they need three jobs to be able to pay the high rent. And everybody here seems to hold on to what they're interested in. I've never seen a city with such a high percentage of fashion designers, models, actors and advertising creatives. New Yorkers have a dream. And they hold on to that. And they're right. Cause if you stop dreaming, all that is left is reality. And reality sucks.

Once, during a job interview in Holland somebody asked me what my ambitions are. I said: "I want to be the best copywriter there is", and I was serious. "Do you really think you can achieve that?", the creative director asked me, frowning with doubt. I said: "Yes, I do". He obviously thought that I would be out of there in no time (and he was right), so I didn't get the job. But I got something else. I kept on dreaming and I got a life full of travelling, doing what I want to do and learning from the best. And now I'm learning from the very best creatives in New York. I truly love this city and when I go back to Holland for my quarter break I can show it to everybody. Been there, bought the shirt.


Blogger Jef said...

Hey robin .. je moet me je gsm nummer en privé mail geven... ik ben onderweg naar NY en zou 8 october naar daar komen. we moeten dan zeker afspreken en iets gaan drinken !! laat me zeker iets weten. en zal mijn Tshirt niet aandoen (want 'k heb er al één )

Groetjes Jef

8:43 pm  

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