Tea anyone?

March 10, 2009

Correction: Baton Rouge Tea Party website is here and the tea party is April 15th from 1-3. Meet at the State Capitol!
funny pictures

As a Masshole from birth until 18, the Boston Tea Party was always something we talked about while I was growing up. Modern day tea parties protesting “taxation without representation” from the current administration (heck I would have had one with Bush $$$) are popping up all over the US now. In Louisiana, there will be one on April 14th 15th in Baton Rouge and one was held on March 8th in Lafayette.

This week on my radio on Saturday from 9-10 AM on AM 690 WIST, I’ll be talking tea. I want to hear from you: tell me what you think of these parties, would you participate, are they productive, are they stupid, have you participated in one, will you participate in one? Hopefully, Louisiana Conservative’s own Jeff Blanco will accept my invitation (hint hint Jeff) and call in to bring us up to speed on the Baton Rouge Tea Party.

Oh…and look what Whoopi said about the reality of her taxes rising.

Tea party information can be found here and to join the Louisiana party in Baton Rouge, join the Facebook Group.

Having trouble keeping stubble? New `razor’ hones `Miami Vice’ look

Chicago Sun-Times June 19, 1986 | Ernest Tucker NBC’s “Miami Vice” has changed sloppy to sexy, and since the television show began in 1984, “Vice” star Don Johnson has been the model for TV-watching American males who want to copy his hairy exploits and pastel outfits.

Enter Wahl Clipper, which advertises its Stubble Device for “today’s unshaven look.” The company was founded by clipper inventor Leo Wahl 67 years ago in Sterling, Ill., 115 miles west of Chicago. Since then it has prided itself on being the largest manufacturer of haircutters. Certainly, the late Mr. Wahl never developed a semi-shaver, any more than Mr. Toro built a lawn mower that left an unshorn lawn. But times and faces change.

Perhaps Wahl marketing director B.J. Cornstubble was fulfilling his own destiny. Cornstubble said the company had “explored” the concept of a clipper that left some standing whiskers several years ago, but shelved the idea. Then last January a West Coast tinkerer called Cornstubble with a suggestion for a device trademarked “The Miami Device.” The creator already had assembled two attachments for another Wahl product, a beard-trimmer called the Groomsman. go to web site beard trimmer

So catchy was the punny name that even while it was being discussed the media found out about it and ran stories, Cornstubble said. Alas, the publicity apparently alerted NBC, which contacted Wahl officers to blunt their enthusiasm for the name. And Wahl managers had their own qualms.

“We have no control over the character Don Johnson plays. Next month, he could become clean-shaven,” said Cornstubble. The company opted simply for the “Stubble Device,” a less sultry, if more accurate, label.

“And it doesn’t limit our marketing strategies,” he said.

Cornstubble pointed out that starting with an unshaven Humphrey Bogart in the 1950s’ film “African Queen,” hirsute heroes have kept coming: Clint Eastwood in his spaghetti Westerns in the 1960s and Harrison Ford as Indiana Jones in the 1980s, to name a few. And their impact on fuzzy youth has been felt on more than a few dates.

A Wahl-sponsored campus survey showed about 40 percent of the male students who were sampled said they would like the nubby, stubby look, but only half of them would attempt it because they had no way to maintain their scruff stuff. The company believes the time for the shaveless shave is here.

And Cornstubble swears that Mr. Three-Day-Growth Himself, Johnson, has a Device that he requested shortly before the gizmo was unveiled officially at the Chicago Housewares Show this spring.

And what an unveiling it was. Half-shaven engineers and salesmen were on hand to toast this miracle of the science of toiletries, which had proven that a man’s beard grows 1/15,000th of an inch a day. Factoring this in, the engineers designed two clipper attachments: one for a “subtle” two-to-three days growth of facial hair, and another for a “heavier” four-to-five days growth. (The length, Cornstubble swears, varies based on whether the shaver shaves down for a shorter look, or up to the top of the head for a shaggy appearance.) The suggested retail price for the battery-operated trimmer and attachments is only $29.95. web site beard trimmer

And how is this trimmer doing in terms of fleecing customers? Sales reports are not yet in, but Cornstubble said a magazine ad for the Device is garnering three times as many telephone inquiries as the Groomsman did.

So far, stores across the country, including nine in the Miami-Fort Lauderdale area, carry the “frizz-mo,” and Sears has committed to including it in the Christmas catalog.

The traditional Wahl firm has reversed itself, cutting – or rather not cutting – against the grain. But while Cornstubble admits this “is a unique wrinkle in the shaving game,” it is not joke. The company spent some $20,000 on a People magazine ad, and is also taking out spreads in Inside Sports and newspapers.

What if this turns out to be the facial equivalent of a Pet Rock?

“Everyone has some of the same concern: Is it a fad or is it going to be a long-range fashion concern? We feel that with the response to the ads, it’s going to be a longer-range fashion trend than just a whim.” But even a furry fad will satisfy company decision-makers. “We feel we’ve gotten a tremendous amount of publicity showing our company as a progressive one that listens to trends,” said Cornstubble. Personally, the 50-year-old who has taken a lifetime of joking about his name has dropped his use of the Device.

“Most men think they’ll look like Don Johnson, but unfortunately most end up looking like Yasser Arafat,” he said.

Ernest Tucker


1 comments
nlebou
nlebou

I will be there.

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