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Workdaze I: RABble rouser

From coast to coast, it's a scorching spring for the job market. New York healthcare shop Robert A. Becker/Euro RSCG is trying to poach talent from blue-chip agencies via ads on the streets of the Big Apple. Becker bought seven strategically placed boards above subway stations. The ads display agency initials RAB in a design resembling the letters used to indicate subway lines. "Exit boring ad job," they say. "Enter RAB. Opportunities in creative, account services, editorial, traffic and medical education." Becker hasn't hired anyone yet as a result, but the ads have had an impact. One job hunter wrote: "Two elderly ladies stopped and puzzled over [the ad], reading the copy out loud in unison. They walked away bewildered . . . I walked away with your fax number." The media plan takes direct aim at some of NY's heavy hitters. Boards in Union Square and the Park Avenue/23rd Street intersection, for example, target nearby Young & Rubicam division Sudler & Hennessey and Bozell. Another at Lexington Avenue/51st Street is aimed at Grey, McCann-Erickson and Viagra agency Cline, Davis & Mann. Terry Gallo, president of Becker's consumer health division, says the ads are also an effort to build the RAB brand.

Workdaze II: Got his goat

On the left side of the continent, headhunting took a literal turn in the competitive market for prime San Francisco creative talent. Publicis & Hal Riney thought it had snagged a top exec from Goodby, Silverstein & Partners when the creative, with a little encouragement from Goodby, decided to stay put. A few days later, the creative received a package. Inside: the head of a goat from a butcher shop, along with some flowers and a note with something about not doing that again. It was signed "Hal." The "gift," however, wasn't from Riney, known to hunt exotic wild animals, but a gag played by fellow Goodbians. The creative says he still gets sick just thinking about it.

Fast forward for Blockbuster

Faster-paced that last week's Oscars show was how Doner put together the Blockbuster spot that broke during the ABC broadcast. The Southfield, Mich., agency needed to get Hollywood stars to approve use of their childhood photos in the commercial. Doner also needed to sign Carly Simon for vocals. It got the job done in an amazing two days -- much to the relief of top creative John DeCerchio. He had pitched the idea to the client before getting the stars' OK.

Career ape-ex. . . NY week

Ron Fredrick's office at J. Walter Thompson USA, NY, was a zoo when the SVP-broadcast group director played host to TV star Angel -- the chimp in the syndicated "Critter Gitters" kids show. JWT client Warner-Lambert advertises on the program. Fredrick says 25 of his staff lined up to have their photo taken with the star. The monkey business was "a fringe benefit to working here," he quips. . . . The One Club for Art & Copy has the Cannes-do spirit. The New York group is planning a "weeklong advertising festival" around its annual awards show. But if a "New York minute" can seem like less than 60 seconds, how short would a NY week be? For the One Club festival, it's only four days -- May 8-11.

Got an Adage? Tell Dan by phone, (312) 280-3109; fax, (312) 649-5331; or e-mail, [email protected]

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