Virgil Winston: Marketing Guru

You know I am a promotional products expert, but you may not know I am also an office supply junkie. My heart beats faster when I drive by an office super store. Browsing for three hold punches and multi colored highlighters online makes my scalp tingle. My home office is stocked with a two-year supply of binder clips in four different sizes, printer ink, legal pads and #2 pencils.

My obsession is nothing new. I was actually fired from my first job for spending over five thousand dollars in one month at the local stationary store. I even proposed to my wife in the copy room of the office we worked at together. We had stopped in to get a fresh supply of memo pads and I was intoxicated by the smell of paper, toner and lemon-flavored highlighters—for me, it was the perfect spot. I dropped to one knee and popped the question. It was a spontaneous moment so I didn’t have a ring but I did I have my imagination and fortunately, so did Mrs. Winston. For three weeks she wore the large gold brad I wrapped around her ring finger. She cried when I put it on her and that’s when I knew for sure I had found the right woman for me. I later discovered I had tied the brad too tightly so her tears were not exactly tears of joy.

We were married on the same day the first Staples store opened, which I saw as good omen. It was a wonderful day and Mrs. Winston was a vision in white lace. We ate surf and turf and drank champagne all night. Instead of matches or candied almonds, we gave our guests a gift they could actually use to commemorate our special day. Everyone in attendance received a Designer Envelope Slitter imprinted with our names and the date. I still use mine every year on our anniversary to open the card I receive from my wife. Sure the blade has dulled some but it still does the trick. More importantly, it serves as a reminder of the most important day of my life.

The lesson here is simple; there are lots of ways to remember and be remembered. You don’t have to do what’s expected. Sometimes the best way to be remembered is to be surprising. It worked for me. Well, I’m off to search for my envelope slitter…it’s that time of year again. Until next time, remember, “Life is short but marriage makes it seem like forever.”