NPR reported on Thursday that GM had sent a memo out that henceforth employees not only should not use the name "Chevy" for "Chevrolet", but that offices should fine the employees a quarter (US25¢) every time they say "Chevy". General Motors, are you nuts?
There was a clarification update from GM that this only applies to GM employees, not civilians, but that's hardly the point. This has got to be another example of Middle Management Run Amuck, as someone or someones in the organization tries to justify their existence and idiots above them somehow think that This Should Be A Good Idea.
IDIOTS! Don't they realize that having a well establish nickname, one that you've used for YEARS in your own damn advertising (Chevy Tough / Chevy Trucks / etc.), is marketing gold? Other companies would kill for having a good nickname. VW and VW Bug -- gold. Toyota = Toy car? Yugo = You Go Nowhere? Not so much.
I grew up in a GM owning family. I don't really remember the 1956 car, but we had Chevy cars forever: 1960 Bel-Air, 1964 / 1968 / 1972 Malibu Chevelle. We didn't get a new Chevy in 1976 because my folks were starting to pay for Northwestern, but they bought one of the first Cavaliers and have had Chevy Cavaliers ever since. My first vehicle was a 1979 Chevy Suburban, followed by a used 1982 Cavalier wagon when we started needing two vehicles, a new 1989 Chevy S-10 Blazer (2WD), then used 1985 / 1994 / 1996 Chevy S-10 Blazers (4WD). Indeed, our first non-Chevy was the used 1999 Olds Bravada -- and not only was it a GM product, but hell, GM threw away the Oldsmobile label which had its own successful nickname, Olds.
It's all about branding. Sure. But a killer nickname? You can't buy good will like that. And to try to ruin it by banning it in the corporatespeak? GM, you're being idiots. And the publicity you're going to get out of it? Not one bit of it will be about professionalism or competence. Period.
Don't Bother Calling Back
One problem of being home during Sabbatical 1.21 is that I get the joy of receiving more stupid phone calls.
IDIOT: Is this Phil?
ME: Who's calling?
IDIOT: (long pause) This-is-(garbled)-from-the-Police-Benevo
ME: We don't do anything over the phone. (click)
I suppose that telephone spammers and scammers give themselves high fives whenever they come up with or steal a great new idea to con people into actually talking with them. "Returning your call"? Yeah, right. Anyone who knows me knows that I don't like cold calling people, so it is HIGHLY unlikely that I'd be calling anyone, including a charitable organization, when I can contact them online or by mail. And I hate giving out contact information, so the very likelihood that you would be returning my call, which presupposes that I made a call first, is pretty much close to zero point zero. We. Don't. Do. Any. Crap. Over. The. Phone.
Pth-hhhhbt! It pisses me off that the politicians included exemptions for (a) charities and (b) THEMSELVES when they put together the Do Not Call List legislation. No points for creativity and ESPECIALLY no points for launching into a rapid fire mutterance which doesn't properly identify you, your organization (WHICH Police Benevolent Society? There are so many jurisdictions here, even assuming you aren't just a scummy scammer.) and trying to slip that little lie in about returning my call.
From Russia, With Love
While I'm bitching about phone spam, I should note that after several months of freedom after LiveJournal beefed up things on their end a bit, I've had several attempts to spam this LJ in the last week. Two were Anonymous and one had an LJ userid -- all were in Cyrillic and all could be translated from Russian to English by Google. What really pisses me off are the ones which try to add spam comments to my LJ postings with my stories in them.
It was because of these bastards I had to implement screening Anonymous comments the other year, though I still allow them. And sometimes you'll see some comment spam from someone with an LJ userid before I find out about it. My apologies for their bad behavior.
Finally, just to take away the bad taste from above, jimhines posted this link about:
...this functional LEGO sniper rifle, built by Jack Streat. I’d probably want to double the rubber bands to get better range, but still — this thing has a working clip, tripod, and scope, and appears to be pretty darn accurate for a LEGO rifle.
I was amused to see that when loading the LEGO "bullets" into the magazine, you alternate which way they go so that the nubs don't lock together like LEGOs. (grin) Is there anything you CAN'T build with LEGOs?