One of Those Moments

Just when you think you’ve seen it all, something pops up that just makes your jaw drop. I had one of those moments recently as I settled in to check my email. Press releases tumble into my inbox like the oak leaves that cover my yard. What can I say? I’m on deadline—I don’t have time to rake. The press releases are another matter. Every day they show up, I read them, do a little (very little) tweaking, add the HTML coding, and post them on the appropriate websites. The subject lines that crowd my inbox spew hyperbole. Apparently, that’s what PR people are paid to write. (IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER: I write this, acknowledging that some of these same PR people are friends I’ve known for years. Hey, we’ve all got our jobs to do. Now, back to the blog.) Every product is an industry changer, an incredible innovation, offers blazing speed, it’s the first, the most, the best—press releases speak exclusively in superlatives. Lately they’ve come up with a whole new raft of annoying buzzwords. My current favorite is “best of breed.†Really? Are they serious? They’re breeding printing equipment? This is just absurd. But I digress…what left me gaping like a cod was the headline that read: “Ricoh Electronics Announces Plans for Solar System at Headquarters Building.†I can’t publish what I actually said when I read that. The first word was “Holy…â€, but it was not uttered in a spiritual context. Then I said, “You’re (the gerund form of that word) me!†(I’m not overly erudite when I’m stunned.) Was Ricoh actually making plans for the entire solar system? Whoa! Now, that’s what I call R&D! As it turns out, the company HQ is actually installing a solar energy system to conserve electricity. I have to confess, the reality was a bit of a let down, but that moment of disbelief gave me such a charge, such a wonderful break from the usual background noise of “Our printer can generate $1 million within five minutes of installation!!!†that I just had to share it. I could have changed the headline to read: “Ricoh Electronics Announces Plans for Solar Energy System at Headquarters Building.†But I didn’t. As I posted the release on the Quick Printing and Printing News websites, I imagined printers all over the world reading that headline and having one of those wonderful, gob smacked moments that can really shake up the brain cells. Thanks, Ricoh!