Sam Behr, that wacky and creative pitchman for Allied Discounts Tires in Orlando, Fla., is looking for work. After employing Mr. Behr for 15 years, Allied is changing its advertising message and along with it, the way that message is delivered.
Instead of employing a singular spokesman, the company will now speak for itself, Allied said.
Mr. Behr, 67, is well known in the Florida market for his down home delivery and off-the-cuff lines such as ``Tires Ain't Pretty,'' which has become a household phrase.
At Bridgestone/Firestone Inc 's annual dealer meeting, held during the NTDRA convention, dealers used an interactive audience response system to answer some questions about the tire industry's future. A computer instantly tallied their responses.
Not all the questions were serious. Consider these:
Q: Which of these incidents is most likely to be the top story in the year 2010:
A-At age 84, Stan Gault announces he'll step down as chairman of Goodyear-after another 20 years.
B-Because of the aging demographics in America, Michelin replaces its baby commercials with a senior citizen sitting on a tire.
C-Hillary Clinton is president and Bill Clinton becomes a model, appearing in the famous Pirelli calendar.
D-Firestone wins its 16th consecutive Indy 500, to push its overall record to 64 wins.
(The correct answer? Your call.)
Q: Before Shojiro Ishibashi founded the Bridgestone Tire Co. in 1931, what business was he and his family in?
A-A saki distillery.
C-Production of Tabi, a traditional Japanese footwear.
(The correct answer is C.)
Q: What were the circumstances of the first meeting between Harvey Firestone and Henry Ford in 1892?
A-They met in Detroit while Mr. Firestone was a salesman for a buggy company.
B-Mr. Firestone went on a blind date with Mr. Ford's daughter.
C-Mr. Firestone had just founded his tire and rubber company and was soliciting business from the automaker.
D-Both men were college football teammates.
(If you chose A, you're right.)
Here's some National Enquirer-ish news for you: bonnie Prince Edward of England is dating Sophie Rhys Jones, whose father is a tire importer/exporter. If they tie the knot...perhaps a nice set of radials for a wedding gift?
Joining the club
Seen parked on a mean Cleveland street: a rusted-out late-model car with crumpled fenders-but it had ``The Club'' car theft protection device locked on the steering wheel. Rust Belt robbers beware!
We recently found ourselves in a major quandary: the rearview mirror on one of our family jalopies fell off the windshield.
Moments before undertaking this delicate re-gluing operation, we noticed the serious WARNING on the package: ``Contains 1,1,1-trichloroethane, a substance which harms public health and environment by destroying ozone in the upper atmosphere.''
Decision time: Forget the mirror and drive around constantly looking over our shoulder, like some felon? Or contribute to making our planet practically uninhabitable?
Shamefully, we used the ``OEM factory service specified'' adhesive.
But we were intrigued by another dire warning: ``This product contains a chemical known to the state of California to cause cancer.''
Are they the only ones who know about this?