Chris Moody / Pecha Kucha / 18th April 2013 / Scenes from a Life


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For my Pecha Kucha presentation to our agency, I focused on key events in my life that might or might not have seemed vitally important at the time, but they have resonated way beyond the original moment. They are all vivid in my mind now, and many have actively changed the course of my life...

Please read the speakers/slide notes for more details of the stories behind the images and dates. These notes go well beond the detail of the original presentation, in which I was constrined by time!

Think of this as "The Director's Cut"!

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  • Scenes from a LifeThese are a collection of moments from throughout my life.Things that might have seemed important at the time, or possibly not.But they are still important to me now. They are vivid in my mind, and many of them have had a significant impact on my life.
  • This first one is a cheat – over a number of years, Oliver Postgate simply wasteatime from my childhoodI loved their handmade feel, they actually were made in the shedI was captivated by the imagination, the storytelling, the simplicity and economy (these were usually 4-minute episodes) but at the same time the richness of character details, the sound of his voice…
  • There was a lot of music in the Moody household, not all of it compatible.Dad liked Beethoven,The Rolling Stones and (weirdly) Status QuoMum liked Cliff Richard and singalong 3 minute pop – so the radio was a big feature at weekends, and Terry Wogan was always on in the morningsQueen’s Bohemian Rhapsody was No.1 for 9 weeks, although I still have vague memories of it feeling much longer, because it had a video like no other. I had never heard this mashup of the classical-sounding stuff that Dad liked, with the heavy rocking stuff he also liked, and (at least a bit) my mum seemed to singalong to bits of it too.Dad bought the ‘A Night at The Opera’ album, which kickstarted my discovery of albums and an exploration of all sorts of music (well, at least all sorts to a middle class boy from Gloucestershire). I loved gatefold album sleeve, with ornate artwork and all the lyrics printed inside. I loved handling vinyl albums and gently blowing the fluff off the record stylus…
  • As a family we went on holiday to France many times, and to all different parts of the country. I love France and it’s no surprise that it’s my most commoon holiday destination with my own children.I’ve seen the Tour de France live three times, the first in Paris in 1986. Here Greg Lemond is on his way to being the only American to win the Tour legitimately, and with the support of the French media and public!I also saw it up close and personal in 1991 when I was a campsite rep in the Pyrenees, where I got a terrific and lucky shot of Laurent Fignon flashing past me.All the drugs scandals aside, I love professional cycling. I love the personal commitment and team ethic – you can be world class and adomestique! Cyclistson Twitter are fantastic to follow. They seem wonderfully real and down-to-earth.In another life I would be the helicopter pilot/cameraman for the TDF
  • Between school and university, I went to the States for 6 months on a school exchange.This boy from the Cotswolds discovered the world…I had no baggage, I found I could break out from my own self-imposed teenage constraints - clever, not ‘cool’, awkward in conversation – especially with girls(!)…On the very first morning at school in the US, I was invited to skip a class by other guys in the Senior Year, and we went out to get icecream (it was January and about 5 degrees below zero!), then one of them drove his car around the icy carpark, spinning and wheeling in all directions, before ploughing into a snowbank. This seemed a long way from Gloucestershire…I played in a jazz band, started to write a screenplay, skiied in Colorado, I travelled on my own from New York to Seattle and San Francisco and back againI was refused re-entry to the US at Niagara FallsI gambled in casinos in RenoI thought I was Don Johnson on top of the World Trade Centre…
  • Which in itself was probably why at end of my 2ndyear @University, I signed up for an ERASMUS exchange to study in France, without consulting anyone, let alone my parents. A real snap decision.It was a brilliant and far-reaching decision, as I got to go skiing in the French Alps A LOT, even buying my own boots and skis. We travelled down to the Mediterranean for a weekend, we took a trip into Italy. We met and studied with multi-lingual French, Italian, Dutch, German students.Most far-reaching of all, it was in Chambery that I studied marketing & market research for the first time, and discovered more human, practical, real-world ways to apply my thinking beyond the more abstract, macro-economic aspects of my degree course.Even more so, if I’d not gone to France for a year I wouldn’t have been at Exeter in my 4th year, and almost certainly wouldn’t have met Rachel
  • Even then, if my Nan hadn’t died when she did I would have been at a party in Oxford with my housemates on 16th November 1991. Instead, I was still in Exeter having attended the funeral the day before.So I went with other friends to the Lemmy where, almost completely randomly, I met Rachel.I was introduced by a friend from the orchestra. Huw Lloyd is a proud Welshman, and at Exeter University he had to be proud, because most people there seemed to come from the Home Counties. Anyway, it seems he was having an argument with some other people about Welsh politics, independence from the UK and so on, and as he saw me walk past, he grabbed me, exclaiming “Hey Chris! You do politics, come and tell these people why….(I can’t remember the rest!).Rachel was one of the people he was talking with. Thanks, Huw.
  • A week later, Rachel and I went on our first date, to see The Fisher King.It’s not your average, easy-going first-date film. The opening 30 minutes are dark darkdarkBut then there’s a rightly famous scene in Grand Central Station, and a quirky, touching story of redemption and rebirth.Clearly (a) she must like me to sit throughthat opening section(b) she clearly appreciates film!She’s a Keeper…
  • Gareth Edwards scored the best try ever, and it’s still one of the best bits of sport commentary everWhen I was 17 in my final year at school we were playing away against a school we never beat.A friend had just been high-tackled and carried off on a stretcher with whiplash. We had changed pitches while the medical teams took him away to the ambulance.It was 8-all with minutes to play.And then after a terrific passage of play that went end-to-end, I scored a try, diving into the corner.It feltlike I imagine scoring this try would feel.
  • I’ve played the horn since I was 12.In my Final Year at University, I’m playing 1st horn in Mahler’s 2nd Symphony.It’s 90 minutes long, with 10 French Horns in an orchestra of over 100 and a choir of approaching 200.The Great Hall at Exeter is packed with up to 1,000 people (?certainly hundreds?)After the massive final chords,the audience erupts. Section by section the orchestra is called to stand by the conductor. Still shaking from the effort, the concentration, the exhiliration, it’s the turn of the Horns. There are cheers, people are standing. We nailed it. I nailed it.It’s still my happy place moment.
  • Despite a history of hating ‘cross-country’ running at school,I ran the London Marathon in 1998.I raised £2,000 for Macmillan who had been brilliant helping my mum recover from breast cancer.I had pulled a hamstring less than 6 weeks before the race, so my long-run training had been severely affected.I was doing just fine and feeling good up to 16 miles, but then I hit The Wall at 17 miles, didn’t know how to deal with it. I walked for 2 miles (determined to finish) until a small girl handed me a Freddo bar, and said“Chris, SMILE, and run.”
  • This is my catch-up slide! I knew I would get behind by now, so time to relax…Our wedding day was a brilliantday, baking hot, gallons of Pimms, we had a barn dance in a 600 year-old barnIt felt like one of the best parties I’d ever been to, at least partly because whenever I looked around I could see loads of people I knew, and they all seemed to be having a great timeOh, and because I was marrying my best friend
  • The cufflinks on the first slide are the times my daughters were born.Hannah seems to havegot a lot from me good and badShe loves films (Pixar, Studio Ghibli, Lord of The Rings and more) and has some pretty eclectic music choices for a 10 year-old: she likes the usual Pop suspects, but she also like The Cure, the Amelie film soundtrack, a smattering of jazz classics, and indie/dance/folksy stuff tooShe gets distracted VERY easilyAnd despite appearances, she’s not at all confident in a crowd
  • Eleanor was born while we were working in Circus Mews (I was in the room over the archway with Bracey when I got the call…)She was born barely 90 minutes after I got that call, in our playroom…
  • First iPod for birthday immediately started mylove affair with PODCASTSTHE BUGLE – an hysterical news satire, featuring the Daily Show’s John Oliver…THIS AMERICAN LIFE is fabulous slices of life, excellent journalism, tremendously human stories.FILMSPOTTING helps me discover many, many great films that I definitely wouldn’t seeotherwise. The first episode I heard introduced me to REAR WINDOW, RASHOMON & THE LIVES OF OTHERS. Not bad, eh?!
  • Is my blog a Midlife crisis version of my teenage diary?!Never knowingly under-opinionated4 years on, nearly 200 posts, 145,000 wordsMost popular posts… Movember, Andy Goldsworthy, Matilda The Musical
  • I’ve been sold once and made redundant twice – and all of them have been Good Things, especially this last one…30th January 2003 I was finally set free from the politics at Barclaycard.I was on gardening leave while Rachel had Post-Natal Depression and Hannah was still only 7 months oldIt precipitated our move back from Oxfordshire to Gloucestershire, and my career from client to agency, as I came to TRA
  • I’ve worked on lots of good stuff but this really meant somethingI know that research has sucked a lot of the life out of it, but I will stand by Quanda & Just Ask to anyone.This presentation was spot-on. It nailed the brief, it was brilliantly delivered, from insight to strategy to creative to technical approach. It was a new way to approach their whole business that could be transformativeThis is why I like working in marketingThis is the work equivalent of scoring a try in the corner or playing Mahler 2 to 1,000 people
  • So it’s not as life-changing as getting married, but Horrible Histories is fan-flipping-tastic.Better than grownup tellyBrilliant news & advertising pastichesSongs like Charles Darwin in the style of David Bowie’s “Changes” or Eminem-style “MyName is … Charles II”Beautifully observed, wonderfully written, arranged, performed. Often the ‘videos’ are hugely influenced by the original song.The parodies of adult TV shows are fabulous, and often of shows my children have never seen, clearly comedy aimed at the grown-ups… things like Historical Wifeswap/ The Apprentice / Peter Snow-like-News Reports
  • Most recently, I (re)learned the joy of doing things I care about, and the joy of being a bit sillyWe went to Paris for Rachel’s Birthday, and had a kind of Amelie pilgrimage. We carried a gnome around, and took photos of him all over Paris.Like my life, like all our lives, Amelie features countless fleeting moments, that might seem like nothing, but are often a lot more than nothing.Many of these moments don’t matter, are forgotten and lost forever. But many of them really do matter. For longer, and in ways we couldn’t begin to realise at the time.Thanks.
  • Chris Moody / Pecha Kucha / 18th April 2013 / Scenes from a Life

    1. 1. Some time between 1973 & 1978…
    2. 2. Christmas 1975
    3. 3. Sunday 27th July 1986
    4. 4. Monday 11th January 1988
    5. 5. Thursday 7th June 1990
    6. 6. Saturday 16th November 1991
    7. 7. Saturday 23rd November 1991
    8. 8. Wednesday 22nd October 1986
    9. 9. Thursday 12th March 1992
    10. 10. Sunday April 26th 1998
    11. 11. Saturday 8th August 1998
    12. 12. 5.21pm Sunday June 30th 2002
    13. 13. 11.36am Wednesday November 16th 2005
    14. 14. Saturday 10th March 2007
    15. 15. 18th May 2009
    16. 16. Friday 30th January 2003
    17. 17. Tuesday 20th November 2012
    18. 18. Sometime in April 2012
    19. 19. 2nd-5th April 2013