Note: Denny Hatch personally replies to all correspondence.
Readers respond to “Last Prankster Standing,” published June 28,2006, that described the great British graffitist, Banksy.
Another delightful column! May I share with you an office prank that I once pulled off? As it is about direct mail, you may find it of amusement. About 10 years ago I was an Account Executive for the Seattle-based Domain Group. I worked from home in Northern Virginia on accounts generally around Washington and up to New York. I visited Seattle about once a month, but only a few of the more than 150 agency employees knew me except that I was also involved in client recruitment. On April 1, 1999 (clue #1 that this is a hoax) I sent out a lengthy memo explaining how I had met a senior manager with Philip Morris and that after we made a pitch, we had been invited to submit a proposal, and low and behold we had won the agency’s largest-ever client! Billing with PM would alone triple the size of the firm. The Domain group specialized in marketing to the Christian audience. I told the staff that the new product was as yet unnamed, but was code-named: “Holy Smokes”—and it would be developed with the Christian audience as the target. (Clue #2) Finally I revealed that as PM also (at the time) owned Miller Brewing company, we had already been invited to help Miller further penetrate the audience of Christian drinkers! It was all very funny, but at least one employee believed the fake announcement and resigned before she would help “peddle death.” You are right; a lot of people have no sense of humor. That and political correctness are two of the biggest problems facing this nation today. Thanks again for a wonderful column.