Like many in the audience, over the years I’ve received a plethora of fruitcakes for the holidays. Unlike you, I’ve put them to good use and re-bricked my driveway and built a small shed in the backyard, but I would never dream of eating one. I’ve never been able to understand how you could take a cherry, one of the planet’s best ideas, and turn it into something that looks like it’s been exposed to radioactive waste. Were it not for its unintended benefit as a building block the fruitcake industry would be out of business quicker than Pontiac. So fruitcake is an annual staple but every year we’re assaulted with someone’s idea of a get-rich-quick scheme camouflaged as the ideal Christmas gift. Because apparently all Americans will buy anything if you make enough commercials advertising it and we suspend our belief in the stupidity of it. It’s almost as if there’s one of “us” born every minute. I received a Rubik’s Cube in 1980 and I’m still trying to figure it out. I always like receiving gifts they don’t allow in prison because they’re deemed to be cruel and unusual punishment. Before that, if you’re of a certain age you will remember the Pet Rock. They were the perfect pet in that they didn’t eat anything, didn’t go to the bathroom in the house and they rarely ran away. Well, now there are enough pet rocks littering landfills around America to turn Lake Michigan into a pond. And then there was the Clapper because I guess enough of us were smart enough to know how to put our hands together but just couldn’t grasp the concept of a light switch. Just before the turn of the century it was Elmo, a reddish-orange lump of fur-covered plastic that giggled. Parents came to blows over him in stores, yet on Christmas morning they all ended up being $40 dog toys. Then it was Cabbage Patch Kids and their sole saving grace was that they were so ugly that if you put them next to your kids…your kids started to look cute. Around the turn of the century, when it seemed our collective IQs couldn’t drop any lower, there came a singing fish and this was apparently a great gift for anyone who couldn’t sing or catch their own damned fish. Thankfully I also got a Ginsu knife that year so I could carve up the singing fish so it fit better in the trash can…along with the Ginsu knife. The last few years have also given us this creepy little elf on the shelf. As I understand it, this androgynous gnome is Santa’s eyes and ears and he/she leaves your house every night to report back on your behavior. Kind of like a mall cop looking for shoplifters. Here’s the deal…if you need a ferret-sized elf moving around the house to get your kids to behave…your gene pool is badly corrupted. Well, this year Duck Dynasty Chia pets seem to be the hot item, at least judged by the number of times I’ve seen the commercial. Brilliant stroke of marketing since most of the characters on Duck Dynasty already looked like fully-grown chia pets. Seriously, they already look like the crazy uncle you never invite to Thanksgiving. These are guys who make Ted Kaczynski look normal. Si, which they say is short for Silas but I’m sure that was shortened from Simpleton, looks like the Count of Monte Cristo after the 8 years in prison. So now, you can have a clay head sitting on your counter that, in February, will look like the homeless guy begging for change in front of the Do-It Center. Just what you needed, right?
It’s not really that different in business. IMC has a lot of product that works with seasonal promotions but all are made for year-round use and enjoyment. As 2013 winds down we, at IMC, have much for which to be thankful and we take our business relationship seriously and we want you to enjoy, give and receive our products and be able to use them every day. We wish the best for you and yours and eagerly anticipate the coming year. Our 2014 catalog has gone to print and we are excited about the new business opportunities and our new products. We will be updating the IMC website with these new products and brands. All new items will be easily accessible in the section of our website. The 2014 IMC catalog will also be virtual on Zoomcatalog.com if you’re tired of fighting paper catalogs and it can be viewed nicely with your laptop, iPad, tablet or phone. IMC is the recognized leader in the introduction of new retail brands to the promotional product industry and has multiple design awards from both ASI and PPAI. Since introducing Waterford® Writing Instruments and MoMA years ago, IMC has presented more than 35 retail brands from global suppliers to enhance the selections you can offer your clients. This summer we brought you Filter2Go, Ten Design®, Stewart/Stand® and Trendex so look for new and exciting promotional products next year from IMC. We invite you to browse any of our 2,500+ products on the IMC website to see items suitable for any occasion or event and pieces you can use to personalize your relationship with your clients. We have promotional products for every event, show, convention, corporate store and company program that will keep your client looking to you for new ideas. What do you think? Let us know with a comment here or on Facebook or Twitter. IMC wants to know…what’s your favorite gift you’d never give?