Wednesday, August 22, 2012


As a general rule I'm a big believer in smaller government, as I think Washington already has its nose in our business far too much as it is.

That said, I'm willing to make an exception in this case.

I demand that the government immediately form some sort of Bureau of Small Business Names. Why? Go take a look at your local Yellow Pages (ask your parents about it, kids). Even a quick glance will reveal page after page after page of businesses that just happen to start with the letter "A."

It would be one thing if these businesses were owned by someone actually named "Aaackberg," "AAAAAaaaaashimoto" or "Aaaa+ Aaabernathy," but it's patently obvious that this is not the case. These companies are all strategically named in a very transparent effort to appear first in the listings, based on the premise that you'll choose the first business you see.

As an example, my local Yellow Pages is positively lousy with shops beginning with "A-1." There are over fifty  A-1 companies, in wildly different fields. There are also a ton of places named A+, Ace, and the always creative AAA.

It's like an arms race, but with the alphabet instead of thermonuclear missiles. One company calls themselves A & A Hardware, then another tries to top them by calling themselves AAA Tool And Die, then AAAAA & AAAAA Architects, then you get AAAAAAAA Cake Decorators, which doesn't even make any sense, and on and on. It's only a matter of time before someone tries giving their company a name that's nothing but one hundred As in a row.

You people aren't fooling anyone, you know. Everyone knows why you're picking these names. It's not like you've discovered some deliciously clever way to hack the Yellow Pages. Everyone else is doing it too. You'd think after a while companies would realize that when everyone's name starts with an A, then on one's does.

This is why we desperately need some government watchdog committee to step in and put a stop to this nonsense. If your name is Newton, then your business should be called Newton Watch Repair. Not "A+ Watch Repair" or "AAA Watch Repair." No exceptions or whining!

Actually I could see this whole AAA thing backfiring on a business. There's an air of... mild sleaziness about it. If a company is sneaky enough to name themselves solely for the purpose of appearing first in the Yellow Pages, then what else might they be capable of?

In fact, I'm so put off by this crass display that I'm going to throw a wrench into their little scam and pick a business from the opposite end of the alphabet! That'll teach all you AAA+ jerks out there!

So this is your lucky day, Zzaxberg & Sons Heating and Cooling. Expect a call from me soon!

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