The Chicago Tribune had a short feature on Despair, Inc.. This company sells “demotivators”, posters and knicknacks that are parodies of the motivational items used by type A personalities and corporate management.
The article attributed Despair’s success to the modern, cynical culture. I think that’s a strong contributor but what I like about them is they are humourists. Real humour is not just funny but true as well. Many of Despair’s offerings touch a real vein so it’s not just sarcastic.
For instance there’s the slogan
Consulting: if you’re not part of the solution, there’s a lot of money to be made in prolonging the problem
Has anyone who’s worked in high tech not seen that happen?
The one I want has a picture of the Leaning Tower of Pisa with the motto
Mediocrity: it takes a lot less time and most people won’t notice the difference until it’s too late
That rings so true. I spend quite a lot of time in my job fighting against people who really have that exact attitude and I suspect most of Despair’s customers are in the same situation. If the person who wrote the article isn’t, that’s a whole different world than I live in.