Before we get to the Chevy ad parody (No. 7, below), let's address the leprechaun in the room: It's St. Patrick's Day today. Happy St. Patty's! Speaking of which ...
1. Here's some big news this morning from the Irish Independent, Ireland's biggest daily newspaper: "Looks like Donald Trump's 'Irish proverb' for Enda Kenny was actually a Nigerian poem." Edward Dracott writes,
Addressing a St Patrick's Day reception, Donald Trump tried to reach out to Ireland, reciting what was widely reported as an "Irish proverb." Standing alongside Irish prime minister Enda Kenny, the US president's recital was an appeal to remember friends that "have stuck by you" – the only problem is, it wasn't Irish and it wasn't a proverb. ... Here's what the president said: "Always remember to forget the friends that proved untrue, but never forget to remember those that have stuck by you." After a little research online it's since been pointed out the words are lifted from a poem called "Remember to forget" written by Albashir Adam Alhassan -- a Nigerian poet.
2. Meanwhile, "US makes formal apology to Britain after White House accuses GCHQ of wiretapping Trump Tower," per The Telegraph of Britain. Or as the U.K's The Sun put it, "SORRY FOR SPICER: White House issues grovelling apology to Downing Street for falsely accusing GCHQ of spying on Donald Trump." Here's a stateside take on the displomatic dust-up via Peter Baker and Steven Erlanger of The New York Times:
The White House has tried to soothe an angry Britain after suggesting that President Barack Obama used London's spy agency to conduct secret surveillance on President Trump while he was a candidate last year. ... A spokesman for Prime Minister Theresa May said on Friday that "we've received assurances from the White House that these allegations would not be repeated." The spokesman would not confirm that the White House had apologized, as the British media reported.
3. "The rumbling is that Meredith is the front-runner in the battle to take over Time Inc. and its stable of magazines including Time, People, Sports Illustrated and InStyle," Keith Kelly reports in this morning's New York Post. "Time Inc. is not expected to do a bust-up sale -- although that would not preclude Meredith or anyone else from spinning things off -- but only after a buyer makes a bid for the full company. A winning bid is expected to be around $2 billion -- with assumption of $1.2 billion in debt."
4. SXSW wraps up in Austin this weekend. Are you there? Well, here's what you might have missed, per Vulture's Devon Ivie: "All of These Musicians Were Denied U.S. Entry to Perform at South by Southwest."
5. "The Guardian has withdrawn all its online advertising from Google and YouTube after it emerged that its ads were being inadvertently placed next to extremist material," per a Guardian post. "The content included YouTube videos of American white nationalists, a hate preacher banned in the UK and a controversial Islamist preacher."
6. You will absolutely relate to "Sorry for the Delayed Response," a rather perfect short piece by Susanna Wolff that's currently No. 1 on newyorker.com's Most Popular chart. It begins:
Sorry for the delayed response. I opened your e-mail on my phone while my date was in the bathroom, but then I saw that it required more than a "yes" or "no" reply, decided that was too much work, marked it as unread, and then forgot about it entirely until just now!
I totally meant to respond to this earlier, but I didn't know the answer to your question and I kept not caring enough to ask anyone. Now a weird amount of time has passed, so I'm going to loop Laura (cc'd) into this e-mail thread to see if she can handle this. Laura?
7. And finally, in viral video news, the latest harsh, hilarous spoof of Chevy's "Real People" ads -- another in a series from the Zebra Corner channel on YouTube -- has run up nearly 1 million views in less than 24 hours, and it's currently No. 2 on YouTube's Trending chart. You may want to hug the guy who says, "I have no idea what 'initial quality' means. Initially it's OK, but after that it's a piece of crap? Is that what you're saying here?"
Simon Dumenco, aka Media Guy, is an Ad Age editor-at-large. You can follow him on Twitter @simondumenco.