The Old Lions Perish

Saturday, February 11, 2006

MARKETEX and "The guy"




Funny, there was a time in this country when being Proud of being an American also meant self-promotion. Especially among persons whose leanings were toward Free Enterprise.

I remember a time in 1975. My company was exactly 6 years old, it's 37 now. Myself and a client were in the buying offices of a nationally known Retail Drug Chain located then and now in Deerfield, Illinois. We had just sat down with a buyer after the customary sign in process at the front desk. My client and I, a retired Postman, had just done a whirlwind drive through Springfield to hand carry a charter for his new Corporation, drawn up by an attorney who was a career-long friend of my father, and therefore well trusted, but his respect was much more widespread. He had been the attorney for the first Black Mayoral candidate in Gary, Indiana, and then became the city's first Black Corporation Counsel. Years later, though I did not know it then, I would marry his neice, and we are still married after almost 21 years.

But I digress. We proceeded from Springfield and during a single day drove to St. Louis Missouri, to ink a contract for an Illinois distributorship of the product we found ourselves discussing with the Drug Chain buyer the following business week.

In comes a guy who interrupts our meeting demanding to know who I am, since I signed in as dba/MARKETEX.

I was insulted, my client was amused, and knowledgeable, and the buyer was cautious, but the guy was insistent that MARKETEX was HIS corporate name, and therefore under Illinois Law could not be mine.

In my sales book, as an afterthought, I had placed my Cook County Business name registration certificate. It was on one of the back pages between clear plastic sheets.

I opened it and showed it to the guy and he started with amazement that I could not quite figure out at the time.

Turns out that I had beat him in registering the name by three years, mine in 1969 and his in 1972.

This was the first time we ever had crossed paths, it seems, because of a "clerical malfunction" his Corporation had been acknowledged by the Secretary of State despite my earlier filing.

I did a lot of research and found that we two were the only users of the name in the entire country. I checked all 50 states and the territories and possessions.

That led me in 1977 to open an office in Los Angeles California, downtown, and register, of course, in that state.

I also registered in Wisconsin, Milwaukee specifically, and opened an office there.

So, here I was at 33 years of age with offices in at least three states, not counting correspondence offices in others.

I was naive enough to believe that these offices and inter-state advertising on radio, mainly, one of my products, would suffice in securing my intellectual property rights in the Corporate Identity.

BOY WAS I WRONG!

It seems that a number of persons, who might have seen my nametag at conventions and shows or who might even have individually concocted their own CORP ID liked the name which is actually a contraction of mine and my daughter's name followed by a variable
EXpression that could mean EXpertise, or EXperience, or sort of Techy kind of thing, because I specialized in the marketing of technical products and services and the proprietary development of same along with the development of CORPORATE IDENTITY. I had also concocted a fancy name for my client, who, watching my problems with "the Guy," writ large, caused him to choose his own name and "Corporation." My current choice of slogans for my own is "Marketing Technical Excitement", and I have been and will be an Apple Developer Connection affiliate, right after I figure out whether I really like Dual-Core technology, or not. Nothing about the latter, here, however.

Every now and then I do a search on Google and discover not only Corporate, but product name infringement, on developments of mine which are registered in the Copyright office and should be as searchable, as their infringement.

I digress again, somebody has persisted in asking me if I am "Looking for somebody to Sue..."

I just shared a couple of opinions with her (ha) and mentioned my appreciation of Johnny Cash's music with respect to a certain song in which some poor boy abandoned by his father after being named "Sue" looks for his father and finds him, whereupon he finds out why his father did it. To toughen him up. As they hug each other after a barroom brawl, they become best of friends.

No, dear, I have long passed any statute of limitations on the issues above, and now I will tell you why and conclude this thing.

You see, my dear sainted parents, two of 'em, for those who find that strange for my particular background, were great at teaching.

In this case, after a couple of strongly worded letters from an attorney caused no response and we were headed for court, my mother took me aside and said to me "Son, you know where it says in the bible that you should make peace with your adversary?"

Turns out that Matthew was my favorite book of the New Testament and I said "Yes, mother dear!"

"Well, son, maybe it would be better not to take them to court and just outlive 'em."

As she was ALWAYS right, she lived well past the day, when I could report to her that the offending company had gone out of business, and that the name was again available in the State of Illinois, at least, to just one person, me!"

So, that's the part about "MARKETEX and the guy," but there's more, because this started on a MyWay Political chat board as "People who like George Bush's style but don't want their name in the news"

That IS George's style, and you would think that no one of his follower's would have a problem in gratuitous self-promotion, which is the only reason over many tries at business that he has become POTUS, because it could not have been SKILL.

ONE other thing that my mother and my father always told me along with aunts, uncles, and others along the way was "FOOL'S NAMES, FOOL'S FACES -- always seen in public places"

That is almost impossible for a successful businessman, or a ne'er do well to follow as advice, of the negative kind.

Fact is, you gotta promote yourself, or you ain't gonna make a dime. After all, advertising was one of my functions and product/service sets.

So, even though I didn't fully take her advice, my mother, especially, I tended to keep a lower profile than most businessmen.

George, however, is a different case.

George would like ALL OF US TO JUST SHUT UP, BE QUIET, AND HIDE SOMEWHERE.

I really think that the intimidation of the American People is the WORST problem we have as a people.

Not just in business, mind you, but just as a matter of any Life-Style you can name.

Now, there are those who will ask me to document all of this, and a younger Maurice might have taken the bait.

Problem is, they do NOT want any documentation, they simply want to disagree, disagreeably, and have you do all the heavy lifting.

If you bring them a ton of documentation, they won't even pay the bill for your hernia.

And they won't READ a line of it, except to call out any obvious mistakes made in your haste to satisfy what you might be led to believe is honest interest in the subject matter.

Fact is, my opinion, as stated is documented by numerous acts of his, including the "Valerie Plame Thing."

George wants people's names promoted in a bad way, to cause them harm, but he does not want even the least promotion of his mistakes. And since he is a "businessman" and now POTUS, that does not make sense.

Valerie and her husband deserve privacy and the right to their own opinions, her husband on the advice he gives based on the intelligence estimates he makes, while his wife deserves privacy, by law.

Now, there are certain peoplel, spinners who dispute the latter, as they say that there was no dispute of what the gentleman found in Niger and what Bush stated in his “State of the Union Speech in 2003, or so I have read, with skepticism.

Mintzing words, whether Bush said “sought nuclear weapons-grade material” or “purchased nuclear weapons-grade material” and the difference in the setting of the SOU (my newly adopted acronym for State of the Union address, like the boy named “Sue,” above, not the beginning of “South,” -- well that all makes no sense, either.

There is an awful lot about the WH that simply makes no sense.

Another set of good examples of things making no sense, are the “accounting errors” that reduced a 200 Billion Dollar Surplus (which, according to the Neo Cons, never existed -- and they are great accountants, having been advised, at the time, by none other than the reputable person of Kenneth Lay, himself,) to a 5 Trillion Dollar deficit in only less than 6 months of the first Bush term, after equally prodigous mathematical hattricks the previous year in both the election totals in Florida, and a really curious 5-4 decision, that was apparently too close, though in favor of, a new Bush administration.

Kenneth Lay and his friend and co-defendant Jeffery Skilling say that what they did to the mathematics of the widows and orphans in California and elsewhere is entirely legal, showing that things were BETTER, than they actually were, in the Accounting from Enron.

I almost bought a bunch of IBM laptops from the auction held here in Chicago, spelling the demise of Arthur Andersen as a reputable entity, but with the market as it was, I just couldn’t come up with the money. The next year, I managed to buy the same or better computers for a lot less for more of them, while IBM computers were still made in the USA. They no longer bear that imprimatur, but Lenovo, a fine Chinese firm will sell you a wonderful laptop to do your taxes on this season, so maybe we should thank the good folks at the WH who yesterday claimed that the jobs leaving this country is a “Good Thing” for this country.

File all of these things as “Other things that make no sense” and if they make sense to you, get professional help.

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