Target Does WHAT?

(Warning double entendres ahead. If you are easily offended then avert thine eyes).

A week ago, my family  returned to Grand Rapids after a brief  vacation. When my wife said that she was heading out shopping, I immediately thought  of my city’s national  treasure: a sign at the front of a retail plaza showcasing its merchants.

There is nothing unusual about this assembly of stores, but the arrangement of their signs is particularly humorous. At least it is  to 12-year-old me (and current me):

It is  one of the things that makes Grand Rapids grand:

Retail signs arranged so that stores are shown in this order: Target, Staples, Aldi Dicks

Target Staples Aldi Dick’s

Target. Staples. Aldi. Dick’s.

The earliest incarnation of the sign arrangement in this retail plaza was:

  • Target 
  • Staples
  • Dick’s

Later, there was a grocery store chain that made a brief appearance (circa 2009) that couldn’t get a foothold in this market during the global financial crisis and closed.

But for a short time the sign said:

  • Target 
  • Staples
  • Fresh Market
  • Dick’s

After Fresh Market vacated the space, Aldi moved in and took third position on the sign.

The only explanation I can think of for the persistent double-entendres in the sign arrangement is that the property manager is unapologetic smart-ass (and therefore will forever be my hero). 

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“You Can Call Me Ray…”

Bill Saluga is not a name you’re likely to recognize. I just learned his name moments ago.

Though many of you might remember ”Raymond J. Johnson, Jr.” a character Saluga portrayed in his standup act, beer commercials, and on variety shows.

His schtick was saying his full name and clarifying how you  could refer to him.

”You can call me Ray. Or you can Jay. Or You can call me…”

He took great offense when people called him Johnson:

(“Raymond J. Johnson, Jr.” in Busch Natural Light ad with Norm Crosby)

Ray ( or Jay, Johnny, etc.) recorded a novelty single called “Dancin’ Johnson.”

I never heard it on radio though saw him perform it, with backing vocalists, on The Tonight Show.

I’m pretty sure that is the precise moment that the Disco Era ended.

We owe him a debt of gratitude.

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Back in the DAM World

People that work in the area of digital asset management (DAM), know that being interviewed on “Another DAM Podcast” is much like it was being Johnny Carson’s first guest of the evening on The Tonight Show.

I had been away from the DAM world for a spell; thus it was quite the honor to join Henrik de Gyor to chat about my DAM self.

The interview is about 19 minutes. The origin stories, and explanations, of “preventing digital liability” and “preserving brand security” begin at 3:40 and 6:40, respectively.

It’s good to be back in the DAM world.

Please see my earlier blog posts for more about avoiding the digital liability and preserving brand security.

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Punched Out

Several years ago I was talking with my oldest brother, who was then in his 20th year with an insurance giant.

I was in my 3rd year with an advertising agency. I absolutely loved what I was doing—supporting 50 creative department users, and keeping the server alive— though I couldn’t tolerate the deplorable way in which senior leadership treated many of their employees.

I described the environment to my brother and told him I was planning to leave the company.

His executive-level advice was “You just have to learn to roll with the punches.”

My response “I’ve rolled with their punches, I’ve ducked their punches, I’ve counter-punched when appropriate. I’m good at all of the above. I just prefer corporate cultures where there’s not so much f’ing  punching.”

I can’t help but wonder how many people who are among those who are leaving jobs during The Great Migration were perfectly happy with their pay/benefits, commute time, etc. but are seeking a low-punch (or no-punch) work culture.

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