Let Them Eat Cake!

For those that don’t know me too well, what I’m about to say will compound every stereotype about me being a geek and a fan-boy in an instant. Any Professional respect (yeah right!) that I have will go flying out of the window, and I can hear the teasing from clients and colleagues alike on telephone calls, site visits and user group meetings for a long time to come. But I’m going to say it anyway.

Some people follow Football in their spare time, some people collect stamps, others go to the cinema.

I read Comic Books.

You know, Spider-Man, Batman, Captain America, that sort of thing.

Stop sniggering.

Anyway, one of my favorite Comic Book characters is called Quasar. He was a character created in the mid-70’s, about the time I was born. He’s heroic but he’s polite. He’s mild mannered. Not at all like all the other anti-heroes of the modern age. I’ve grown up reading about him and I know all about him. I’ve got all his comics. The fact that he’s not as popular as Superman or The Flash makes being a fan of Quasar that much harder. I get teased by other Comic Book fans about being a fan of Quasar. Now if you thought collecting comics was sad, imagine being teased by other people who collect comics!!!

Last year, something terrible happened. The writers at Marvel Comics killed off Quasar. I was distraught. The GG couldn’t console me. I moped around the house. Why would Marvel do this to a character so many (well, about 300 of us worldwide) cared about?

Quasar’s "real name" is Wendell Vaughan. A "Bring Back Wendell" campaign was started to persuade the big-wigs at Marvel Comics to resurrect Quasar because, you know, this is comics and people can come back from the dead with some decent writing.

Anyway, the response from Marvel has been less than stellar. Who cares if a bunch of fan-boys rant and rave about a character no-one else cares about? The letters of complaint can be strewn into the bin. The e-mails pleading for Wendell’s return can be deleted. It’s easy to ignore people if you want to.

So the folks at the "Bring Back Wendell" campaign did something a bit different. They sent the editors at Marvel Comics a Cake!

Everybody loves cake! It’s a lot harder to throw a Cake into the bin than it is a letter. It’s difficult to ignore a sweet-sweet Cake like you could a Telephone call. Suddenly the Marvel big-wigs are happy to chat about Quasar, and even hint he may return in the future. Great news!

The story got me thinking about something Susanne Dansey said recently. She recommended that on your next site visit to a client, you take a bag of Doughnuts. Your clients will love you for it!

Back in the day when I was an IT Contractor it could be real easy for the permanent employees (the "permies") I worked with to be resentful of me for getting paid more, not having to work overtime, etc. etc. How did I keep those "permies" happy? I provided a constant stream of Doughnuts, Cream Cakes and Chocolate Biscuits. It worked – I got on with them just fine and even made a few good friends!

Since I worked for myself, I’ve never bought cakes for my clients. But I will do now. People are happy to talk to people who offer them cakes – it may improve my relationship with my clients!

And who knows? The good karma of my cake buying may help to bring Wendell Vaughan aka Quasar, back from the dead. Fingers crossed, true believers.


1 Response to “Let Them Eat Cake!”

  1. 1 matt November 15, 2007 at 12:13 am

    Nice blog!  Thanks for the coverage!
    Bring Back Wendell Vaughn as Quasar!

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