Kelloggs Answer . . .

Dear Mr Bell,

Thank you for your e-mail. This has now been passed to the relevant
department who will contact you in due course.

Kind regards,

ED
Kellogg Consumer Services.

Well, a prompt response to my enquiry. I’ll let you know what happens and if you’re wondering what this is all about, have a look at December’s Blog archive.

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Brilliant, Kelloggs!

Regular readers will know I talk about TV commercials here from time to time. This is one of those times!

Now this may be for UK audiences only, as I have no idea if this is showing in the US or elsewhere, but . . . have you seen the Kelloggs TV Commercial featuring the three children and Santa? It is brilliant!

OK, so it’s excessively sentimental, cute, unrealistic and schmaltzy but it is so well written, directed, lit, shot, edited and above all cast and acted, it is superb. The story: Three children (Girl about 8 or 9, boy about 7 and a girl about 3-4) prepare for Santa’s arrival. They leave out a bowl of cornflakes for him and hide behind the settee to wait for him. They fall asleep. Later, the youngest girl is woken by a sound. Santa is sitting in a chair eating the cornflakes. She gets up and walks shyly over to him. He whispers “shhhh”. She shyly grins and whispers back “Ho ho ho”. He holds out a single cornflake to her, which she eats. She goes back behind the settee and squeezes her eyes shut. Next morning, the older girl says to the younger, “Never mind, maybe you’ll see him next year”. She turns away and very quietly whispers to herself “Ho ho ho”.

It sounds so simple – and it is! What makes it great, is the fairly slow pace of the ad, the lack of any reall “sell” (although it does so, superbly) and above all the cuteness of the young girl – who is also a very good and natural young actress.

Strangely, the Kelloggs website makes no mention of the commercial, it’s not on the “Lycos Viral” pages, and I can find no reference to it through Google. I have emailed Kelloggs asking if the ad’ is online anywhere, because (although it’s really too late now) this would make (have made) a Christmas “Viral” that would go round the world in a couple of days. Kelloggs – you’re missing out – big time! Why don’t big companies (Honda excepted :-) know a good thing when they have it. New Media is about far more than just publishing a nice “electronic catalogue” as a website!

If Kelloggs reply to me, I’ll let you know what they say. In the meantime, watch out for the commercial!

Two Recent Jobs

I’ve just finished a couple of very diffferent jobs, both Websites, and very different in style, design and content.

As I’m working as a contractor now, I thought I’d post a couple of links here for two reasons. Firstly, anyone looking for a website can see how brilliant I am and employ me! :-) Secondly, I have on average ten or twelve Search Engines and Web Spiders visiting this site every week, so hopefully they will pick up the links and start visiting these clients also. So if you want to see what I’ve been up to recently, have a look at: Lamberhurst.com and TheCentral.org.

The clients for ‘The Central’ Website want to maintain the site content themselves, so after discussions about style, look and feel, I supplied them with the basic design, the top graphics (including the nice fading rollovers), the Webform and a basic 12 page site structure. I also created some suitable text styles and set them up with ‘FrontPage’ all organised to publish (ftp) directly to the server. Finally, I sorted out their Email to come and go via their own domain name through Outlook (the client had only ever used web-based email previously). The content is theirs entirely, a neat turnkey solution for them. If you’d like the same service (at a very reasonable price of course!) just let me know by filling in the form you’ll find here and we’ll have a chat about it.

I’d Like This For Christmas, Please, Santa!

This is to all my friends and relations out there (and Santa Claus) all of whom have been waiting anxiously to hear what I would like for Christmas. (Yeah right!) Anyway, I have now decided.

I would like a Pinzgauer please. A what? A Pinzgauer! No, I’d never heard of them either until I came across them entirely by accident. I have now fallen in love, however. As far as I can gather, somewhere around £28,000 – £30,000 will buy a decent second hand one. That will do fine thank you.

So what is a Pinzgauer? Click Here for the movie (500k and worth it) or Click Here for the Website! The exact model I’d like is This One except I’d like mine in metallic white, please. Now you have to admit, that would be smart! I discovered they’re manufactured in Guildford – about 50 miles from here. Now isn’t that a well-kept secret!

Thank you in advance, Santa. :-)

Does Santa Claus Exist?

I don’t think this is widely known, so it is definitely worth repeating here. I came across this many years back and saved it carefully for my children. At this time of year, some other parents may find it enlightening and useful.

This is an absolutely genuine question to the ‘New York Sun’ written by an eight year old girl, and the New York Sun’s answer. The date of publication was Tuesday September 21 1897 – that’s not a typo, that’s 106 years ago – and the answer was written by the Editor at the time, Francis P. Church.

Is There a Santa Claus?

We take pleasure in answering at once and thus prominently, the communication below, expressing at the same time our great gratification that its faithful author is numbered among the friends of THE SUN:

DEAR EDITOR,

I am 8 years old.

Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus.

Papa says “If you see it in THE SUN it’s so”.

Please tell me the truth, is there a Santa Claus?

VIRGINIA O’HANLON
115 West Ninety-Fifth Street, New York

Virginia, your little friends are wrong. They have been affected by the skepticism of a skeptical age. They do not believe except what they see. They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds. All minds, Virginia, whether they be men’s or children’s are little. In this great universe of ours, man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect, as compared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge.

Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! How dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus! It would be as dreary as if there were no Virginias. There would be no childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The eternal light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished.

Not believe in Santa Claus! You might as well not believe in fairies! You might get your papa to hire men to watch in all the chimneys on Christmas eve to catch Santa Claus, but even if they did not see Santa Claus coming down, what would that prove? Nobody sees Santa Claus, but that is no sign that there is no Santa Claus. The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see. Did you ever see fairies dancing on the lawn? Of course not, but that’s no proof that they are not there. Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world.

You tear apart the baby’s rattle and see what makes the noise inside, but there is a veil covering the unseen world, which not the strongest man, not even the united strength of all the strongest men that ever lived, could tear apart. Only faith, fancy, poetry, love, romance can push aside that curtain and view and picture the supernal beauty and glory beyond. Is it all real? Ah, Virginia, in all this world, there is nothing else real and abiding. No Santa Claus! Thank God! he lives, and he lives forever. A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay, ten times ten thousand years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood.

The piece was so popular, it seems it was reprinted. To see an image of the original, (which is just about readable), Click Here.