Tuesday, March 03, 2009

First Prize is Hamilton Island, Second Prize is Muskoka

I paraphrased Major General (Ret'd) Lewis MacKenzie in the title. He was running for office in my district and locals became upset that he thought Ottawa was better than Muskoka. He lost the election. Then he moved out of Muskoka.

Anyway, I applied for the "Best Job In The World" and did not make the shortlist. This summer, instead, I will go home and visit friends in Muskoka.

The BJITW was an advertising ploy by Queensland Tourism. They created a sweetheart of a job that was mostly intended to focus attention on the area. The successful applicant would live on Hamilton Island, enjoy him/her-self and make a video blog each week about his/her activities.

I, and 35,000 others, applied. Today, the shortlist of 50 was announced. I was not on that list.
There was one Korean entry, however. A girl named Gina. Go Gina! I have already voted for her. UPDATED: There are two Korean entrants - I missed Juweon. Go Juweon!

Applications took the form of a video, which had to be one minute. My first application was 1:00:5 or something and was rejected. My second application was a tiny bit shorter and was accepted.

For anyone who cares, here they are (Queensland Tourism doesn't care).

I would link to Gina's video but I am having some difficulties with the URLs - they don't change as I change websites. Maybe later. UPDATED: The link is now added. Hope it works.

Oh, and MacKenzie's quote was along the lines of "First prize is Ottawa, second prize is Muskoka" - he wanted to win the election, but Muskoka was waiting for him if he didn't. Of course, he then moved out of Muskoka so I wonder what third prize was.


Anonymous said...

I don't know much about Australian work-relate laws, but I don't see many older or average people (not beautiful thin models) making the short list. I think they might get some backlash because of it. I know I will write the Australian Tourism Board to voice my concern for the vast majority of normal people who were overlooked.

John from Daejeon

Anonymous said...

I also guess no dark skinned people applied.

J from D

Yeah, I know it is a promotional gimmick, but they should be on the up and up about it. Too old -- don't apply. Too fat -- don't apply. Not pretty or handsome -- don't apply. Not as white as the sand -- don't apply. I just wonder how many visitors this would keep off their beaches if the same rules applied to those vacationing on these islands.

kwandongbrian said...


I am not saying you are wrong but I am disqualified from complaining because I applied and didn't make it - complaints from me would sound like I am a sore loser.

Let me defend, for the sake of argument, Queensland Tourism's decision.

I suspect that more young people than old applied and more light skinned than dark applied. There are several Asians in the running.

I have been told there are two "Axis of English" - the white one (Australia-New Zealand, Britain and North America) and the dark one (I think it is Singapore, South Africa and India). There is one Singaporean on the shortlist. As ESL teachers (I guess you are one), we know there are at least two forms of English and they closely match the two Axis. There is English by native speakers and English as a communicative tool. in the latter, articles (a,the) and third-person verb forms ("is" and "runs") are optional, and there are some other bits of streamlining that don't affect communication. It is possible that people could have been disqualified for speaking 'Communication English' as not being fluent.

I wish you well in your letter writing - be sure to emphasize that KwandongBrian is certainly average and old and fat - perfect really!

Anonymous said...

I’m not knocking those who were among the chosen (many had some very well done videos), but the promotion was really recruiting those with model-type bodies and not those found in more abundance--the average person--without coming right out and saying so. Deceptive advertising makes my blood boil, and this promotion was no better than those late night (early a.m.) TV hucksters with their wonder products that are so exceptional that they just can’t be found in regular stores or markets. I just figured that out of over 35,000 applicants, for the sake of authenticity, one might be a bit on the pudgy side; however, a heavy-set person included in the 50 short-listed applicants may have garnered enough support to make it to the final eleven via the wild card entry and thrown the contest organizers for a bit of a loop.

I’ll keep you informed as to what feedback I get back from the Australian Tourism Board. By the way, I’m rail-thin, nearly as white-as-snow due to the lack of sun this Korean winter, and an ex-executive of the marketing business. “Mad Men” is a great TV show detailing a lot of these types of advertising shenanigans that went on in the United States in the 1960’s advertising world and is still going strong today.

John from Daejeon