This morning when I went out to the new house there was a case of coke leaning against the mailbox with a card in an envelope. Someone I had met with last week had dropped it off as a thank you gift. It made me smile and also brought back some memories.
About 30 years ago as I tried to rev up my art career I was looking for a hook - something that would make people remember me. I decided I would use Coca Cola. It is, after all, the most recognizable and collectable product in the world. My plan was to somehow make people think of me every time they saw coca cola. I made it a point to always have a coke in my hand when a picture was taken for publicity purposes. I purchased a few coke collectables and put them on my shelves. I even had the coke truck deliver cases of the beverage to my studio once in a while. I also enjoyed Coca Cola so it was no stretch to drink it as well.
Over the next while my plan seemed to be working. It started with family and friends. On special occasions, like my birthday or Christmas more coke memorbilia was added to my collection. But soon my strategy gathered some serious momentum. Clients who traveled the world saw coke items, thought of me and brought me all manner of coke memorabilia with a wide variety of languages printed on them. Soon, the shelves of my studio were stacked with hundreds of bottles, cans and all kinds of things - all emblazened with the coke logo. Other clients brought me coolers, and signs and even a couple of fridges. It wasn't long until the studio was overwelmed with coke. The storage room shelves also overflowed with coke items.
About five years ago I decided this coke thing had done what it was meant to. I needed the shelf space for books and other personal stuff. After lots of thought I sold off the entire collection, with the exception of a few special items. Even so every once in a while I still get a package in the mail from someone I havemn't heard from in a while. As often as not, when I open the package there is a set of coke salt and pepper shakers or some other similarly themed item. The plan I had hatched more than 30 years ago is still working it seems. :)