Dear Dr. Boli: As a young person with ambition, I was thinking that it might suit me to found a gigantic commercial empire and retire a billionaire at the age of twenty-eight. I have a good business plan, involving selling through retail outlets nationwide and building brand identity through advertisements printed on the sides of prominent politicians. The one thing I don’t really have is a product to sell. Do you have any suggestions? I need something that will sell like the proverbial hotcakes, but I looked it up and it turns out that the history of the retail hotcake business is just a litany of failures, so that’s out. —Sincerely, Holly Pressburton, Mrs. Skink’s Tenth-Grade Civics Class, Blandville High.
Dear Madam: The one product the world is crying out for is a shampoo that at least claims to clean hair. Look at the shampoo aisle in your local drug store. You walk in there with dirty hair, and you want something that will make it clean. And what do you find? You find shampoo that will fortify, moisturize, texturize, strengthen, emulsify, nourish, refresh, volumize, lusterize, define, replenish, hydrate, renew, activate, and revive your hair, which, after all that, will still be dead. The one thing you won’t find in that aisle is a bottle of shampoo that says “Gets your hair clean” in big letters. Bottle some scented detergent, label it “Gets your hair clean,” and get it into every drug store in America, and you’ll be able to retire at twenty-three.