I received these great photos and lovely memories from Jessica Edelstein, whom we all knew as Jessica
I couldn't sleep and after reading through all your great entries to the Jay\Day site, the least I could do is give you a little Jay story and a quick update on myself as well.
My Jay story: I have many Jay stories but my very favorite took place at about 2 in the morning the night before a pitch in NY. I'll keep the client and involved parties anonymous to defend their honor.
I was working as the Designer for New Business at the time, and as such, part of my job description was to hand-write, with a black, blue or red chisel-tipped sharpie, every scrap of paper that went up on a new business project room wall that the client would end up seeing. For this pitch, I was "on loan" from the LA office to the NY office.
Since doing hand-written project room presentations on gatorfoam walls was in its infancy at the time (the first being done for Memorex in which we crashed a glass ceiling down on the client, but that's another story) and had not yet become the mass computerized presentation platform that takes up all the office's free space that it is now it took many hours to make all the strategic thinking look so "organic." For several days planners and account people were buzzing about preparing the presentation, and I built the "walls" to their specifications, making charts pretty and tearing out scrap faces from magazines. I kept thinking that this particular project room was a case of the emperor's new clothes no one wanted to tell the planners and account people that just filling the walls with text and graphs doesn't a smart strategy make.
Anyway, at about 2 in the morning the night before the pitch, after I think being at a fund-raising event, Jay came into the office and asked to see the project room. There were about 15 gatorfoam walls filled with their presentation (and my handwriting) in a line all the way down one of the multi-colored halls of the newly "virtual" NY office. Jay walked down the hall, slowly scanning all the walls - at the end of the hall he pointed to all the account people and planners and said "you, you, you, you, you, start over there's nothing here." He looked at me and with a very stern look and a finger in my face said, "and you... go to the museum."
My own story: I took an account group assistant job on Minit Lube and Taylor Made in the C/D L.A. office in Feb of 1992 "temporarily" while I waited on the results of an Art Direction interview with Ogilvy in NY. That week Ogilvy lost American Express to C/D NY, and I've never left. Well, I did leave about 5 years ago to open projectdesignstudio with my husband and office-romance partner, Andrew, but now together, we are still always at the ready whenever Lee or Laurie call with an interesting project. We have a terrific daughter Abby who is almost four, and who paints with a fervor Jay would love.
Oh, and I'm working to get the first Room 13 in the U.S. up and running in South Central LA, hopefully by January. All people interested in the love of art and kids are welcome to help out! (for more info contact me or see www.room13scotland.com)
I have many more stories from my almost 16 years with the agency... but the birth of the Jack in the Box antenna ball, the working over New Year's wearing surgical masks with Laurie while the warehouse was going "virtual," the $20 xmas bill from Jay, the Lee tap dancing on a logo right before a pitch, the Bob Kuperman Top Ramen, the Apple pitch walls reassembly on the floor of a hanger at LAX at 4 am stories, will just have to wait....for say.... a book maybe.
Thanks for giving me something to do with my insomnia. (And since Kieran Darby shot rubber-bands at me, called me slang british names that I still don't know the meaning of, and made me work until midnight, all on my first day on the job back in '92....I'll have to think about the referral thing.)
All the best,
was Schulman, now Edelstein