Wednesday, August 18, 2010

A Sign by the Side of the Road

In 1925 Allan Odell convinced his father Clinton Odell that by using small signs along the roadways of America they could promote their shaving cream company, Burma-Shave.

Thus from that simple beginning was born, what could conceivably be called, the first social media advertising campaign. And while there was no internet, no TV, nor even cell phones used to promote this campaign it will forever be remembered as one of the most unique, original, advertising campaigns ever seen.

For amazingly as the world watched this simple idea, started for $200 dollars, turned Burma-Shave into one of the largest shaving cream companies in the United States at that time.

And with over 7,000 Burma-Shave signs at its height no American could travel for any distance without seeing the fruits of Allan and his brother Leonard’s work. Thus throughout the depression and into the early 1960’s Burma-Shave continued to bring joy and anticipation to a whole generation of travelers on the byways and highway of this country. And, of course, along the way they made Burma-Shave a house hold word.

What does this teach us today about advertising? Are there lessons can we gather from this simple yet powerful idea that still apply?

I think so!

The first of which is that advertising is at its best when it’s simple. For just as Burma-Shave could with 5 little signs (containing nowhere near twitters 140 character limit) catch the imagination and attention of Americas traveling public we can do the same today.

And second, an advertising campaign to grow and achieve success, must bring some measure of worth to those involved. It can be anything from the simple entertainment of a Burma-Shave sign to the joy we experienced with the old Kodak picture ads. But somehow it must touch the people watching in a way that moves them and holds their attention long enough to deliver its message.

We just have to choose our words wisely, keep our message simple, and bring value to the people who we present our message too. If we remember to do that the wonder of the Burma-Shave signs, and what they taught us, will live on.

You can see many of the old Burma-Shave sign ads here at: Burma-Shave Slogans

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Dear IRS

I received this letter and just had to share it with you all. I'm not sure but I may have a few of these things laying around lose to use to pay my taxes.


Dear IRS,
Enclosed is my 2009 tax return showing that I owe $3,407.00 in taxes.Please note the attached article from USA Today, wherein you will see that the Pentagon is paying $171.50 for hammers and NASA has paid $600.00 for a toilet seat.

I am enclosing four toilet seats (value $2400) and six hammers (value $1029),bringing my total remitted to $3429.00. Please apply the overpayment of $22.00 to the "Presidential Election Fund," as noted on my return. You can do this inexpensively by sending them one 1.5" Phillips Head screw (article from USA Today detailing how HUD pays $22.00 each for 1.5" Phillips Head Screws is enclosed for your convenience.)

It has been a pleasure to pay my tax bill this year, and I look forward to paying it again next year.

A Satisfied Taxpayer

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

A Little Humor for the Day

Humor always makes the day seem to go a little better and a laugh will bring sunshine to an other wise dreary day. So enjoy!

During a recent visit to my doctor, I asked him, "How do you determine whether or not an older person should be put in an old age home?"

"Well," he said, "we fill up a bathtub, then we offer a teaspoon, a teacup and a bucket to the person and ask them to empty the bathtub."

"Oh, I understand," I said. "A normal person would use the bucket because it is bigger than the spoon or the teacup."

"No" he said. "A normal person would pull the plug. Do you want a bed near the window?"


Thursday, August 05, 2010

My Thoughts on America Today

At a time when we face so many decisive issues in this country I feel I must say that I think it's time for those of us traditional, patriotic, God fearing Christians to step forward and take a stand.

For soon it seems we Christian patriots will be in short supply if some have their way. As we now live in a time when the president doesn't solute or ware the flag. A time when we are asked to cease our prayers to the God of our forefathers. And we are being told we should apologize for who we are and what we've done.

Well I as a Christian and a patriot feel I must step forward and say, "Enough!".

I love my country, respect it's flag, pray to a Christian God, and make no apologies for it. To those who respect my right to do so I respect them and I'm willing to be tolerant of their beliefs.

However to those who don't, stand aside, as I do not intend to be anything but a patriotic Christian American. And when your beliefs, thoughts, and actions attempt to prevent me from this freedom of expression that is my right as an American you will find that I will fight you for that right with all the might my God will grant me.

So for those of you who understand please join me,

I PLEDGE ALLEGIANCE TO THE FLAG OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA AND TO THE REPUBLIC FOR WHICH IT STANDS, ONE NATION UNDER GOD, INDIVISIBLE, WITH LIBERTY AND JUSTICE FOR ALL. (I grew up saying this every morning in school - it's a shame we no longer do that for fear of offending someone).

So God bless us all as we need his strength and understanding to make America once again a country that honers it's Christian heritage and practices the patriotism that built America.

And take a moment to listen to these classic Americans tell you why they love America and what it means to them and let their words bring a tear to your eyes and a longing in your heart for the Christian America so many fought and died to provide us.

Red Skelton's The Pledge of Allegiance

John Wayne The Pledge of Allegiance

John Wayne America Why I Love Her

Johnny Cash Ragged Old Flag

Tuesday, August 03, 2010 A Great Online Resource

One of the handiest sites on the web is found here at

This site provides a world of consumer information as well as allowing you to search for bank, mortgage, loan, & investment products and services.

What rate is highest on money markets?
Who offers the best mortgage rate?
Where can I get the best auto loan?

All of this and more can be researched and found right at your finger tips in only minutes not hours or days. So if you’ve never checked out this site you really should as it can make a huge difference in your financial future to be fully informed before making any important financial decisions.

A great place to start is here where you can do a search for information on what bank offers the best checking or savings account in your area based on several criteria. You might be surprised at what other banks are offering. And while changing banks is a major decision knowing just what choices you have might just make it worthwhile.

It is just such information that can make your important financial decisions both easier and better.

So check out and you’ll be surprised by what you can find in the way of good free financial information. And as always treat this information as a part of what you need to base your decisions on but never rely on only one site or source for financial information.

As a point of information I have neither an interest in nor do I receive any commissions, fees, or other remuneration from And as always this information is offered only as advice in general and not as an endorsement of, it’s information as provided, nor the advisability of making any major financial decision without the proper guidance of a professional adviser knowledgeable in your particular needs and situation.