I don’t drink Dos Equis beer but I think the delightfully absurd ‘lengua en la mejilla‘ (tongue-in-cheek) television commercials featuring the muy macho “most interesting man in the world” are an absolute hoot. Of “the most interesting man,” the narrator says, “His beard alone has experienced more than a lesser man’s entire body” and “his blood smells like cologne.”
The “most interesting man” even looks a bit like a latter-day Latin Papa Hemingway, who was in his time considered a real-life ‘man’s man.’
The ad campaign, which apparently started 4 years ago, is brilliant. Jonathan Goldsmith is the actor portraying “the world’s most interesting man.”
Don’t drink your own Kool-aid.
Sure it’s all just silly advertising tomfoolery. But I also glean another more important side to these smile-inducing commercials. And it’s a side worth noting for lawyers. It’s simply this, “Let’s not take ourselves so seriously.” It’s an unfortunate tendency some of us have.
More innocuously, it creeps up in the age-old polemic of law as hallowed profession or inferior trade, as in the good, bad, and ugly of ‘esteemer’ versus ‘demeaner.’ More insidiously, it evidences itself in collegial discourtesy, even incivility. It can even crop up as disrespect toward clients.
So here’s breaking news for lawyers, especially the ones too self-absorbed to return phone calls (1), the Dos Equis narrator is only joking when he says of “the world’s most interesting man,” that “His business card simply says ‘I’ll call you.'”
And it’s equally farcical facetiousness when the narrator says, “People hang on his every word, even the prepositions.” Memo to lawyers as professional talkers, “the world’s most interesting man” albeit fictitious, is ‘in on the joke.’ He’s not one of us. People don’t hang on our prepositions or conjunctions, let alone our bare infinitives.
So could a lawyer exude such panache without the arrogance? Or without the professional self-importance? Probably not.
And not even if the lawyer looked more like Tommy Chong and less like “the world’s most interesting man.”
(1) See, for instance, State Bar of Georgia and Texas Center for Legal Ethics and Professionalism.