Saturday, March 18, 2006

Newsflash! South Park Is Mean; Red Swinglines; TOTN; LJ Movers & Shakers

Items of note:
  • Ann Althouse points to more weasly (sp?) bullshit from Comedy Central about pulling selected "offensive" episodes from the repeat schedule. Hey, I know! Why not just make a new show and call it "Nice Park" and then we wouldn't have to worry about anyone being offended! Washington Post story here; stand by for possible Mission: Impossible III boycott.
  • We Netflixxed Office Space the other day; I learned that the producers had to specially create a red Swingline stapler for the film. In the extras, Mike Judge said that Swingline started getting so many requests for this non-existent product that they began to produce them. According to Mr. Judge, the red version is now Swingline's best-selling stapler. Excerpt from 2003 Time article: Edward T. McAvoy, production designer of the 1999 film Office Space, was pondering ways to accessorize that film's geeky character Milton and latched onto a stapler. He wondered, What could I do as a designer to make this stapler special so as to justify Milton's need to possess it and the bosses' need to covet it? He decided to make it fire-engine red. "I called Swingline and said, 'Do you make a red stapler?' and they said no," McAvoy recalls. "And I said, 'Well, do you mind if I use your logo on the side of a stapler I'm going to paint red?' They didn't mind at all." McAvoy took four Swingline staplers to a local auto-body shop and told the workers he wanted them "perfectly painted, just like you'd paint a car." He later added a computer-rendered logo. Once the film was released, buyers began asking for the red stapler. But Swingline didn't make it. "We concluded we really needed to put a red stapler on the market," says Bruce Neapole, Swingline's president. He says Swingline continues to sell thousands each month of what it calls the Rio Red Stapler. Lots of good links at the Official Red Swingline Stapler site.
  • I started watching the documentary series Triumph of the Nerds this morning, which is about the history of the personal computer. Quite interesting, even though it was made in 1996, at which time the PC industry had still not taken off to anywhere near the extent that it has in the past 10 years... the World Wide Web was still just a kid.
  • Library Journal has named their top Movers & Shakers for 2006. Props to all, including fellow Blogspotters Jill Stover of Library Marketing: Thinking Outside the Book and Sarah Johnson of Library Careers/Beyond the Job.


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