I have a friend whose partner, R., has been diagnosed with breast cancer and is now going through a treatment program that currently is scheduled to include 2 or 3 rounds of chemo, potentially followed by surgery and radiation. She's about my age, in her early 40s. Oddly enough, R.'s mother was diagnose
d with breast cancer in the same month that R. was, in her early 70s. What are the chances of that I wonder?
This story, though, isn't about the cancer so much as about marketing gone horribly horribly awry.
See, R.'s mom goes to a cancer clinic in Birmingham, AL. You know how sometime in small businesses of all kinds you'll find stacks of some freebie calendar that they're giving away. I mean, it's gotta be a pretty cheap way for a business to get its name out there, and the other business that agrees to put out the calendars can feel like they're giving their customers something for nothing, which looks good on them, right?
Well, in this Birmingham, AL cancer clinic the freebie calendar set out for customer pick-up is from a mortuary.
OK, so even if one can imagine the mortuary folks thinking, "well, gee, some percentage of those people are going to be in the market for our services in the relatively short-term...what fertile ground for acquiring new customers", one finds it much harder to imagine the office manager of the cancer clinic...or any other human being working there...thinking that it would be the best choice of material to be hanging around the office.
As my friend says: "sometimes you just have to laugh, because you get tired of crying."