Monday, October 6, 2008


This is Tony Viola, my art-director cube mate. In addition to having the world’s greatest name, Tony is the nicest person I think I’ve ever met. He dresses in a tie and sport coat every day (I took this picture on a casual Friday), smiles non-stop, and when he’s not smiling or laughing, seems cheerfully confused.

When he shakes your hand, he winds up and fires his hand at you like a women’s softball pitcher, then shakes vigorously. It’s both hilarious and endearing, especially because that’s exactly how my Grandad used to shake hands.

The thing is, in the super annoyingly hip world of advertising, a pair of boot cut jeans means you must’ve been born during the Eisenhower administration. A little gray hair and you should be writing your will. A year over 40? You’re a topic to be discussed in geology class.

Which is why it’s so nice to see that guys like Tony Viola have found a home here. As far as seating assignments go, there’s a clear line in the sand between the young, impossibly cool future advertising superstars, and the older, graying, future advertising superstars of yesteryear. The older guys work on pharmaceutical commercials and cream cheese print ads, while those born after 1985 write thinly veiled dick jokes for candy advertising. In the end, it’s all the same thing.

And let me tell you something. When it comes to seating assignments, I’ll take sitting next to Tony over those young punks any day. Why?

Because just before I took this picture, Tony asked me for some help on a project. I found what he needed on the web and emailed him a link to the page. When he got the email, he said, “Now if I click on this, will it take me to the internet?”

First I cried. Then I hugged him and thanked him for making me feel so hip.

1 comment:

Rodney D. Wetlow said...

Oh be still my heart! I adore Tony V. even more than I thought I would.