Cliched stories about reflecting yesterday’s lesson to carve a better path for the journey of tomorrow lurks everywhere on newspapers, radio stations, TV ads and reigns of social media.

Sadly, I feel the relevance to a major critical problem most local media agencies and overseas production houses probably suffer from right now in this diversely urbanized age we live in — creatively lackluster programs.

Really, how innovative can you be when you setup the same damn live broadcast program every fucking year, just for the sake of counting down till the clock strikes 12? How appealingly distinctive can you be when recording the same short film, the same public service announcement that delievers the same damn message we hear over and over again at the end of every fucking annual cycle?

To be frank, this question has been in mind for quite some time now, it puzzles me as to how the creative project directors feel every time Chinese New Year knocks on the door and they have to come up with campaigns that appeal to the masses. It really isn’t a piece of cake kind of job.

Just take Petronas for example that remade its 2012 short film, by once again showcasing how a Chinese man working in a remote discrete location in India had to figure out a way to get to the city, to access internet video calls and be virtually present during his family’s reunion dinner.

It lost out blatantly to Maxis, that shot a film reminding people of the significant resemblance of their Chinese names and MAS airlines that established the possibility of a new year celebration under the pretext of cross-cultural family relationships. Both were emotionally exhilarating.

Mind you, there are 12 zodiacs, they come and go every 12 years. How do you innovate that shit? And integrate it with all the traditional values that we Chinese so graciously adhere to?


It took me a while to figure out, but the answer was simple — “It simply does not matter”.

Because as long as people comprehend the message, your efforts regardless of the creative grading is a part of a larger initiative that reinforces traditional values and strengthens noble codes that Chinese communities have been passing down and protecting for generations.

You are preserving something that we greatly appreciate, something that is in our bloods, something the we feel has gone beyond being significant and something that we cherish so extremely dearly.

It is just like how we cherish our families, friends, colleagues, counterparts and comrades, so much that we emphasize the concept of “reunions” every fucking new year.


As the world witnesses the last 30 minutes of the year of the horse, I want to take this opportunity to applaud and recognize the efforts of the creative strategy, for reminding us every year, what it means to celebrate Chinese New Year.

And to everyone who has crossed paths or stepped into my life, thank you for being my entourage (just kidding, mind the narcissism), thank you for making my life so much more interesting and exciting. You are all the reason I am who I am today. May your year ahead be more thrilling and successful than ever.

Also know that I cherish you, forever and always.


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