I was speaking to a copywriter recently and he explained that he had a nickname for the regular demands for a Grrr/Cog/Balls/Gorilla.

He called it Grrrballs.

When I were a lad and all round here were fields it was Tangounexpected (doesn’t roll off the tongue quite so well, but whatevs). Every client wanted a Tango or a Dunlop Unexpected (more a Tango to be fair. It was much more famous than Unexpected) and whether you were being briefed on Sugar Puffs or Pirelli the planners and client wanted to let you know how high they were setting the bar.

Almost always that’s not what they wanted. Most of them just wanted to look as if they were after a big, famous ad, so they pointed to the most topical one. But in those instances it was like the owner of Doncaster Rovers pointing to a great Arsenal game and asking for that kind of performance. None of the necessary factors were in place, so it was never going to happen.

But should we condemn the client who wants an ad way out of his league? I suppose it’s better than the client who goes straight for the crap, and in shooting for the moon you might hit the stars they really want. Then again, creatives are never keen on bashing their heads against a brick wall, and false hope can be pretty tedious.

Then there are the ones who actually mean it. They really do want a Grrrballs.

Few and far between, but most welcome.

Clutch them to your trembling bosom and never let them go.