The Concept Catalog
May 28, 2008 Leave a comment
Back when I was working at an invention marketing company, one of the ways we promoted the inventions was the annual publication of a Concept Catalog that was handed out at trade shows and mailed to manufacturers and so on. Each invention got a quarter-page ad, written in a certain format: eye-catching headline, product name, 5 to 7 bullet points listing its advantages, and the reference number. We writers churned out these ads (3 to 5 per hour) and sent them upstairs to the artists, who used clip-art and fonts and flourishes to try to make each ad look special.
This was rather draining. Particularly when it was almost time to publish the catalog and we had to proofread all the ads, they began to swirl together and induce cackling insanity. Working late one night, I swept my eyes too quickly across two adjacent ads for completely unrelated ideas and found myself reading a very funny sentence! Then I went through the whole catalog making similar unholy creations, and the next morning everyone found this in their mailboxes:
Come on everybody
I say now let’s play a game
Let’s match up all those C.C. headlines
With the wrong invention names!
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