Can you find the Kirshenbaum references?

Booster_book1We’ve always been a sucker for books about advertising. Thus, we’d like to point you to the blog of Jennifer Solow, a former Kirshenbaum Bond + Partners creative, who, according to her bio, is "well-known for the infamous ‘Wendy’ Snapple campaign, for her collaborations with directors Spike Jonze and Spike Lee and photographers Terry Richardson and Richard Avedon and for being the editor-in-chief of a nationally distributed porn magazine on her off hours." Anyway, it seems Solow had an epiphany on Sept. 11, 2001, while presenting a new campaign for Breck shampoo: There might be more to life. (You’d have to be a bit off not to come to the same conclusion in that circumstance.) The thing is, while most of us eventually sunk back into our vacuous lives, Solow left the agency world to write a novel, The Booster (in stores March 31, 2006!), which, if the excerpt here is any guide, is pretty vacuous in and of itself—jam-packed with designer names, fledgling addictions, Lower Manhattan-style yearning and mildly cloaked references to her former employer. If the latter interests you the most, go directly to page 16 of the excerpt. We’re guessing Billy Baum of the Bomb Advertising Agency is a composite. Despite the obvious allusion to Richard Kirshenbaum in the name, he’s described as short, and though it’s been a while since we’ve been in the presence of Messrs. Kirshenbaum and Bond, we distinctly remember Jon Bond not being the tallest guy in advertising. The excerpt also includes copious references to seating plans and a “small mountain of neon orange bean bag chairs,” which, a colleague tells us, is très Kirshenbaum these days. Two more things: The requisite reference to Adweek (and perhaps some other bastions of fine advertising journalism) appears on page 22, and Jillian (that’s the main character in the excerpt), as a favor to you, it’s Comme des Garcons, not Comme de Garcons, and it’s Betsey Johnson, not Betsy Johnson (see page 2). Those who want to while away some hours deconstructing the novel’s ad references, please report back.

—Posted by Catharine P. Taylor