Thursday, July 02, 2009
One of the funnier Steve Martin movies is "The Jerk," and one of the funnier scenes in it is when Navin Johnson (Martin's character) gets excited when the new phone book arrives and he is listed in it for the first time, thus validating that he is somebody.
Last evening, when I happened to walk out to the end of the driveway, I noticed that the new Verizon phone book had been delivered, but, alas, it was the Yellow Pages and not the White Pages, so my level of excitement was nil. I could not help but notice that the two most expensive advertisement placements -- a full page on the back cover, and a full page on the inside of the front cover -- were by lawyers who were so thoughtfully asking whether I'd been injured. As an informal survey, is the same true of your phonebooks?
I admit that in the age of Google, I don't use the physical Yellow Pages phone book more than a couple of times per year. Is there something about the target market that prompts ambulance chasers to fork out the big bucks for full page ads in the phone book? And will that change once we enjoy the full fruits of Obamacare?
And, really, what incentive would Navin Johnson have to invent the "Opti-Grab" today?
I assume that Harold Greene's order must have ordained the lawyer ads.
No. No small children and the modern books are too dang small anyway.
I remember when the Los Angeles Yellow Pages, plus the Central and North Western Sections were used for visiting small children at the Big People's table.
The covers of my Yellow Pages are also graced by ambulance chasers. One year, an ambulance chaser ad featured an adult male and female with two children with the disclaimer in small print that this was NOT a picture of the attorney and his family, but of models.