Just woke up, took a shower, brushed my teeth, ironed my shirt. Getting ready for another day at the agency when my wife asks, “Is that what you are going to wear?”
“Well, the last e-mail you forwarded to me said something about wearing clothes you're prepared to have stuff thrown all over and underwear you're prepared to be found dead in. Seems you are going to ruin that shirt…”
Somewhere between 9:00 and 10:00am
I arrive at the agency. Everyone is buzzing with excitement, people running around trying to get their work done before noon when the big celebration kicks off. This will be my first Founder’s Day. It’s W+K Portland’s 30th anniversary, and to top that, our agency W+K Amsterdam turns 20 this year. The day starts with a little present, W+K Amsterdam style.
"Bing-Bong-Bing,” the intercom bell sounds. “Attention, lunch is ready in the kitchen.” It's the lovely Kelli over the intercom. And man is it incredible - pasta, chicken, risotto balls. Everything the stomach needs to prepare for the party of the year.
Laid out at reception are 16th century wigs, golden diamond incrusted crowns for the ladies, beards and shoe buckles for the lads. Theme of FD XX is the Golden Age of Amsterdam. What an amazing way to start a party! Everyone hurry! Busses leave 1:30 sharp.
Waiting for the bus. People passing by must think we are crazy. 100+ wearing wigs and fake beards, striking white make up and red lipstick. Don't forget your birthmark and rosy cheeks.
On the bus. Two busses driving the Golden Children of W+K AMS north. Destination unknown. True to FD tradition, the day’s festivities remain a surprise. We make a short stop at the gas station to grab more beers from the trunk. Feels like I’m going on a school trip but without having to sneak the booze along.
Somewhere between 2:30 and 3:30pm (It’s starting to get fuzzy…)
We just arrived at the destination. We are on a dock and everyone starts walking towards an enormous sail ship. Karaoke/dance party below deck, bar at the stern, wigs and crowns bopping up and down. Enjoy the breeze on deck or sweat on the dance floor below. Golden Age baby! That's how the Dutch roll. Eh, float. Proost!
We sail to a picturesque Dutch village off the Ijsselmeer. We dock. In reverse! Neat trick Captain. Everyone is given a mask, and we begin walking towards a medieval castle. Per Dan Wieden’s request, the entire network has invited former employees to their respective FD. This is crazy. Party in a castle! Nice glasses of bubbly and a terrific dinner await. I haven't seen you in ages… How are you… Wassup! People around me are meeting up with old colleagues and old friends. A warm glow of reunion radiates from everyone.
What time? Party time!
This party should go on forever! A dinner feast in the dining room and a massive dance vibe on basement floor below thanks to our 2 London DJs. Everyone who wasn't there, I'm so sorry you missed it. FD XX is definitely one I won't forget any time soon. So looking forward to next year. I love this place.
Post by David de Jong, head of IT