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2005 05 23
I don't know when I first heard the joke.

"Toronto's the city where people say, 'Thank God it's Monday'."

It wasn't really that funny then, but after living here for fifteen years, it's no longer a joke at all. It's a pain in my brain that I can't relieve with Tylenol.

Now I realize that Toronto suffers from this joke in two ways: first, it suffers from the excesses of a minority of its citizens who have made a religion of work, and, second, it suffers from an inability to laugh at itself.

It's time for Toronto to take it's joke to heart. It's time we expose the shallowness and absurdity of a religion of work.

It's also time to show ourselves and others that we have a sense of humor, even, or most particularly about ourselves. It's in this spirit that I want to give away an idea to the team at Brand Architecture and TBWA/Chiat Day Toronto who are currently working on the project of "re-branding" Toronto.

Here's the set-up for the first in a series of TV ads. Each one will feature a Canadian comedian and each will turn on the notion that Toronto is finally in on the joke of being or aspiring to be a "world class" city.

Imagine Mike Myers in his Austin Powers get-up, strolling down Church St. with the music of opening scene of Saturday Night Fever playing as we cut from his walking feet to his "stylish" garb, he flashes those killer teeth at the camera and says, "Come to Toronto, baby. It's just like London, except for the Queen." Upon hearing this, Enza the Supermodel enters the frame, gets all up in Austin's grill, and growls, a la Lauren Becall, "who you calling a Queen, freak!"

Super: Toronto, it's a lot funnier that you think.

[email this story] Posted by Michael Anton Dila on 05/23 at 12:58 PM

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