Wednesday, July 30, 2014

A logo in the window at last

“Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.” — George Bernard Shaw

WE'RE MAKING progress at Brainstorm. Still a long way from our grand opening, but we're inching along. 

We finally got our name on the window. Hallelujah!

One of the non-physical alterations we've made is changing our name from Brainstorm Marketing to Brainstorm Iowa. It's shorter, snappier, but broader in concept. Marketing was a little too pigeonhole-y, plus we get the added benefit of being able to lose our l-o-n-g web address; becomes the shorter, easier to remember and type We haven't switched our web address quite yet, so if you look for us, look under the old address.

We love having a storefront location!! And we're now in such a fun part of the city. We're surrounded by clothing boutiques, gift shops, antique stores and funky restaurants. We took an impromptu walk around the neighborhood a few weeks ago, and Paul said, to quote Marc Maron, "We've found our people." 

As I may have mentioned, we have a full kitchen. It's the first time in my entire life that I've ever had a dish washer. Seriously, and I think I'm in love!

We have a little black table and chairs next to one section of our big windows where we eat lunch. Before we had our name on the window, from time to time people came in thinking we were a restaurant. Not such a surprising misconstruction considering that we have one of our customer's big displays up inside and he's a pizza restaurant consultant, and coincidently we also have a Tabasco sauce banner stand that's plainly visible. Add to that the little table with us sitting in the window eating, and not such a stretch think "restaurant." Gotta get new displays!

When we were cleaning out our old location, we put a lot of things in storage and disposed of at least as much either by selling it on Craig's List, donating it to Habitat for Humanity's Restore or simply putting it on the back dock at the old office for anyone who wanted it. One of the items Paul put out was a trade show display case that I always thought was kinda cool because it's a smaller one, maybe 40" long, and pod-shaped with bright red straps. 

I looked out the window at our new office one day and saw a guy on a bicycle with our case strapped to a kind of makeshift trailer he was pulling behind his bike. I said, "Hey, Paul! Our ex-case just went peddling by."

A couple of weeks later, I was taking the trash out to the dumpster at our new location, and there he was. I think he thought I was going to scold him because as I walked over he said, "I'm just looking for cans and bottles." 

I said, "Of course. Of course. That's just fine. I have some inside I'll bring out to you, but I'm interested in your case. We're the ones who put it out on the dock at 108 Third Street."

He apologized for taking it, and I said, "No, no! We meant for whoever could use it to have it and put it there for the taking. We're glad you're finding it useful."

Then he told me that he keeps his bedding in it to keep it dry during inclement weather, and indeed his bike trailer is a phantasmagorical construction of all his worldly goods organized and strapped together.

Today as we were having a late lunch, I saw him across the street, standing with his bike under a big shade tree. I pulled out a cold lemon soda from the fridge and walked it across the street to him. 

The back of the showroom.
Part of my office.

Paul in front of a couple of exhibits.
PS: July 29 would have been my Grandpa Sargent's, the grandpa who raised me, 125th birthday. Yup, he was born in 1889. 

Today, July 30, is my brother David's birthday. He's lived in Japan since he was 24, and I haven't seen him since I was 20. 

Today is also my cousin Kevin Sargent's birthday, another grandson of Grandpa's.

I will always love you, Grandpa and will always be your little Kay.

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