This week I had the fortune to visit my local hospital for an overnight stay. Good fortune in that, despite their efforts and likely their wishes, I remain alive; misfortune in that I had to eat the food and, simply put, hospital food sucks. Funny, they don’t advertise that in the brochure. I’m firmly convinced they have some dietician maniacally cackling in a basement pantry while compiling menus based on other dieticians’ whims of the week. Seriously, this is exactly the food that causes prisoners to riot and while I might be imagining it, I know I can hear the nurses giggling as they deliver it. By the way, the nurse’s station was awash with take-out menus so I’m pretty sure I’m right. An overnight stay subjected me to all three meals and I swear I couldn’t tell them apart. The only difference was orange juice at breakfast, apple juice at lunch and grape juice at dinner and the only thing different about them was their color. And poured together they wouldn’t have equaled a single serving of the fruit the AMA is always harping about. I was twice served something they laughingly called “chocolate pudding” whose recipe apparently included mud, a broken windshield and pocket lint. Oh, and artificial chocolate flavoring. I haven’t mentioned salt because the total lack of it makes me believe it must be on some endangered mineral list but I guarantee its omission is the reason everything tastes like an old shag rug. It’s not like I’m expecting gastronomic excellence. After all, they have a poster of Paula Deen and the caption says, “If you see this woman, please call the Surgeon General.” And it’s not really a ‘Truth in Advertising’ issue because it’s not like they have a Zagat rating on the front door. That said, I don’t expect something that tastes like my mechanic carried it around under his arm all day. They also don’t supply knives because they don’t bring anything you can’t cut with your finger but I think they’re more concerned about the suicide rate skyrocketing if patients had sharp objects.
It’s not really that different in business but we do rely on and demand truth in advertising. Our industry can’t have commercials showing a 2-pound hamburger while we produce something that looks like a slider from White Castle. Promotional products industry distributors and their clients expect to get what they ordered so make sure your catalog and website show the product as they will receive it and with the logo in the right place. Pre-production samples and paper proofs are always available. And you can always call IMC if you have questions about your logo? Many of our items have alternate logo locations and our customer service representatives are here to help. Whatever your cause, event or celebration, you can count on IMC for ideas and advice that will promote and support your client’s event. With five IMC collections and twenty-eight retail brands, we have products for all occasions and events, so you can always find something that fulfills your client’s needs. And we’re always happy to offer ideas and provide case histories. What do you think? Let us know with a comment here or on Facebook or Twitter. IMC wants to know about your hospital food experience.