Just a note that Johnny and Angus decided to have a chat with moi in "Apathetic Interviews Episode 4: Dabitch", so I'll share some stories about escaping cops in Haitian shanty-towns and tips on how to keep your tables clean. This isn't about adland, but if you fancy, have a read. Edit 2016 Johnny and Angus have deleted their blog. Full interview now posted below.
Happy Thursday everyone. Look, look, it's Apathetic Interview time. This is our excited face. And this week we've got a proper legend of the ad-blogging world: Åsk Wäppling, better known as Dabitch, founder of Adland.tv and all round ad geek. We were lucky enough to meet her on Monday and she's well cool. So sit down, shut up and read this or we'll come round and snap all your pens in half.
So like, what do you do and stuff?
My dayjob is Art Direction. I'm an ad industry commentator by night.
How did you get into that?
Turns out I have this really bad habit of talking about advertising all the time. It's probably some sort of disorder. Adrettes.
What would you be doing if you weren’t doing that?
Painting wall murals or building really tiny tech-thingies nobody has thought of yet.
Done anything interesting lately?
Is there anything you want to plug?
I'm going to be very boring here and plug Adland.tv – yes it's still around. Yes, you can upload your ads there, yes you can read about advertising there. Yes, I'm not dead yet.
What other sorts of stuff do you like and whatnot?
I like messing with data. Everything we do is tagged, logged, and saved somewhere these days. The electronic door key registers when we enter and leave. Our credit cards note when we travel. Our passports are scanned. Every website wants us to fess up on our gender (I am always "other"). I mess with the GPS on @adland every tweet, so I'm tweeting from Canada, when I'm actually in Sweden. I screw with electronic locking systems so it doesn't register me entering and leaving. I wear T-shirts like this when going through airport security:
In Sweden, we're registered from birth, and every bit of info about us, illnesses, vaccinations, if we had braces, what school we went to, where we lived, and if we lived out of the country,, is kept in large databases. It makes me laugh when I demand the printouts and find they have not one bit of data correct, except my date of birth. What's even funnier is that I have nine-hundred-thousand days of maternal leave to use. I'm pretty good at messing with data now.
Do you have a website? Or a blog? Or the twitters? Do you want to say anything about it?
Yes, I do. I run adland.tv which is the worlds first ad "blog" (I do hate that word, mind you) and it has the worlds largest collection of Superbowl ads in the archives. It's been a community since 2000 where members are invited to share their latest work, gossip and news. The site and servers are run by me, at one point in time I even built the hardware it runs on (not any more, it's in the cloud now). Adland, the site, twitters on @adland while I personally twitter on @dabitch
Who’s worth following on the twitters?
Your actual mates.
What’s the best thing you’ve seen on YouTube?
There is no "best thing" ever seen on youtube. Sorry. Here's a great thing seen on Vimeo. I dare you not to smile at this little boy owning Vogue.
And Kibwe Tavares just did the Guns Of Brixton with Robots which is quite nice to look at for anyone who knows Brixton:
If you were writing a Mills & Boone novel, what euphemism would you use for the act of lovemaking?
Starting a submarine race.
What’s the best game you’ve ever played?
Who’s the most interesting person you’ve met?
Paul Arden had so many layers of quirky, and my grandfather never ceased to amaze me.
Did you have a nickname at school?
I've had many nicknames, too numerous to count. In Swedish there's an expression: "Loved child has many names". I have many many names. My most recent is "sweet-heart hellraiser".
Send us a picture of something so the interview post doesn’t look boring.
This is my view as I type this:
What question do you wish people would ask you? What would you answer if they did?
Can I give you lots of money? Yes!
Will you do some free work for us?
Only if you renovate my house, for free. Oh and the building supplies will be out of your pocket too. Deal? You might get a tiny logo out of that. Sounds fair to me. My house is two floors of hell. Start tomorrow at the crack of dawn. Bring a bulldozer.
What’s your first pet’s name?
Your mother’s maiden name?
What street did you grow up on?
This assumes I spent all of my childhood one one street (in one country) and I did not.
Are any of the last three answers your internet banking password hints?
No, but the mother's maiden name so-called security Q shows up everywhere doesn't it? I find that one particularly hilarious as my last name is her maiden name. This assumption that all women marry is silly, and that when they do they take their husbands name. My daughter has the same last name as me. So this "security Q" is quite flawed. Must be hilarious for Sikhs. Most mothers are Kaur, while fathers are Singh.
What’s the best bit of advice you’ve ever been given?
Dainty wood tables that get heat-stains from hot teacups can have the stain removed with plain white non-abrasive toothpaste. Keep your feet flat on the ground to center yourself when working.
Have you ever had a run in with the law?
Many times. I was almost arrested in a Haitian hood at 4 in the morning in the Bahamas, but after a disturbingly close frisking they decided to send me & my jeep on my way as long as I promised to keep out of trouble and the Haitian shanty-towns.
What’s your favourite joke?
What's a volcano? A mountain with hiccups.
What’s the worst thing you’ve eaten?
I won't eat things I don't like, unless I have to please a little old lady who misremembers my preferences. Thus it's my grandmothers "Janssons frestelse". It's potato gratin with anchovies in it, and she pours the anchovies liquid in there as well, turning it into salty blech. The horrors.
Have you ever had a supernatural experience?
Everything can be scientifically explained, but sure, I've seen, heard, felt and smelled some very odd things. Sometimes is was just the cat. Other times it was not.
What’s your favourite word in the English language?
Two words: "Burglar alarm" when said by a Glaswegian.
What are your thoughts on the continued tension between the Communist North and Capitalist South Korea, specifically in relation to the unresolved ceasefire from the conflict of 1950-1953, that ultimately leaves the war continuing to this day?
Nuke 'em from orbit. Only way to be sure.
What about this weather eh?
It's as wavering as a politician.
What’s your commute like?
It's thirteen steps from the upstairs to the downstairs, so I'd say it's fine. I don't even need to wear socks. In fact socks can be dangerously slippy when taking the wee corner, so I avoid them.
And finally, who should we interview next?
And dats dabitch. If you have a question that you feel hasn't been answered here, please write to:
THE BATTLESHIP BUILDING
179 HARROW RD
We will endeavour to read all mail, and try not to laugh at some of it.
Or you could just go and ask Åsk herself. She's basically everywhere online. It's not our sodding job to ask questions of people on your behalf. What do you think this is? Go on, piss off.