By Doug Halberstadt
I’ve written columns in the past sharing information that comes to me via e-mail each week. I think most of it is a result of my e-mail address being published at the end of my columns. I started writing for this paper more than seven years ago. Since then, I’ve gotten on some pretty interesting e-mailing lists. Most of them are obviously sports-related.
I’ve relayed stories about luxurious golf resort offers that I only wish I could afford. Others have been about the variety of sporting goods equipment that I’ve been selected and qualified to test market. For some reason, I’ve been targeted to receive huge discounts on everything from high-tech golf socks to the latest, greatest, most sophistically-created, scientifically advanced and aerodynamically perfect badminton birdie. Little do these companies know, not only are my badminton days long gone, they were never even here.
This week was no exception to the ridiculous amount of junk e-mail I get from these overzealous marketers. There was one, however, that did catch my eye.
Please allow me to share. The topic line was “A Grape Offer for Illinois Golfers.” Instead of sending it directly to the trash like most of the others, I actually clicked on it and opened it.
It was a bit of a pleasant surprise when I discovered it wasn’t about golf at all. It was from a wine company trying to get me to buy wines from them. Their catch was since I was a subscriber of OfftheFringe.com I would get a discount on all of my orders. Here’s the thing I found amusing. I didn’t even know I was a subscriber to OfftheFringe.com. I don’t ever recall even visiting that website, let alone subscribing.
They went on to tell me “That Golf Season is Here and We Would Like to Introduce you to blahblahblah.com the 19th Hole for Wine Lovers.” OK, I do admit, I like golf and I like wine, so I actually do fall into the demographics for this e-mail. I will give them some credit for that.
What I do hate to tell them is that golf season has been here for at least a couple of months now. I don’t know where they are, Antarctica? This may not strike you as funny as it did me, but I pictured some (wine-induced) slightly intoxicated, fur-clad scientist stepping out onto the ice during the middle of July and experiencing a temperature in the high 20s. I could just hear him slurring the words: “Golf season is here. We must begin our wine marketing campaign!”
I’m sorry to disappoint blahblahblah.com, but I won’t be buying any wine from them via the Internet, even with my “generous” golfer discount. Instead, I will continue to drive to Sauk City or Cedarburg, Wis., and get my wine directly from the bottlers.
Now, if I could just get either of them to sign a deal with one of these relentless sports marketing companies.
Doug Halberstadt can be reached via e-mail at Dougster61@aol.com.
From the July 24-30, 2013, issue