Adages

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Ken Jarvis, the former Procter & Gamble Co. and Mennen marketing man who is running for a seat on the Nevada District 18 Assembly, won the Republican primary last week with 64% of the vote. Ken is running on the promise that he will push legislation to tax advertising if elected (see Adages, Aug. 19). Here's how the Las Vegas Review Journal reported it: "One candidate who made history was Republican Ken Jarvis. He won his assembly race by spending less than $1. He eschewed signs and mailers and campaigned via e-mail (LVKen18@Yahoo.com) and the Internet." Ken, who is taking no campaign contributions, tells Adages that Republican Party officials in his district are not backing him. "The old guard doesn't like the fact that I'm doing it a new way. If I had lost, they would have used it as proof that Internet campaigning does not work. So I will use it as proof that campaigning using the Internet does work." By the way, Ken is not, as previously reported, a single-issue candidate. Besides taxing ads, he promises to push a bill that will punish repeat sex offenders with castration. No joke.

Ken says, "I talked to John Walsh's office this morning. The `America's Most Wanted' guy. I am trying to get him to endorse the idea."

Zipper, the pinhead

Last week, Zipatoni Co., a St. Louis-based promotion agency, announced that its office will close at 3 p.m. on Sept. 11 so that employees can attend a company-hosted patriotic rally. "The afternoon rally will consist of an employee rendition of `God Bless America' and then the company will close early and each employee will receive a $50 bill to spend." Chief Operating Officer Norty Cohen said: "Zipatoni employees, or Zippers as we call them, are so dedicated that they typically work twice as hard as most people, so by 3 p.m. that day we'll have done more work than most other companies." Adages suggests the big Zipper at Zipatoni keep it zipped.

Follow the leader

Larry Postaer, creative chief at Rubin & Postaer, is kvetching over new Audi A4 Cabriolet print ads from McKinney & Silver that spoof the car's owner's manual. He calls them "an exact replica in every way" of his shop's 1998 ads for Honda's CR-V sport utility. "I've never seen [an ad]so blatantly knocked off." And Audi's new brand tag is "Never Follow." A McKinney spokeswoman says the agency wasn't aware of the old Honda ads. Hey, Larry: Loosen up! This stuff is not only in the air, it's in the glove compartment. Crispin Porter Bogusky's campaign for the BMW Mini actually published a parody manual. A sample road rule from the Mini mag: "Car doors should not be used as privacy screens for people over 6 feet tall."

Fat feeders

The good news last week: McDonald's is dropping the "bad fat" in its fries and substituting it with "good fat." The fast feeder's advertising, however, still targets its most-prized customers, the feeders who like to go to burger joints three or four times a week. In marketing parlance, these frequent feeders are called "heavy users," which surprisingly, for marketing jargon, paints an accurate picture. "The term heavy user has nothing to do with weight," counters a spokeswoman at another food chain, Pizza Hut. "It's a research term that is used to segment the business and help define behavior. " Yeah, right.

Contributing: Jean Halliday and Kate MacArthur E-mail your ballots to rlinnett@crain.com

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