Get Out Revolution Newspaper - NY, NJ, Conn

Monday, July 03, 2006

One good experience Saturday 7/1

Today, Saturday, a team of 4 of us took the "July 4th Challenge" issue of Revolution, a box of the "Wanted" [for illegal crossing borders: the Bush Regime] t-shirts, subscription forms, a table and graphics to a busy Harlem corner. Now, a "holiday" weekend requires special arts at getting attention. We each wore our "Wanted" t-shirts, a detail which cannot be discounted for its drop-dead effectiveness. We inadvertently learned that an XL t-shirt displays nicely on a folded shopping cart, too, adding surprisingly a lot to the overall scene and to shoppers curiosity. As graphics, we decided to use the full cover of this issue, the banner and coverage highlights side, and opened it up so people could see the back cover poster and Frederick Douglass's quote. We had a big enough board to include two other pages below: the full page 3 editorial, and the full page 4 "In the Heart of Watts" piece about the reading of Bob Avakian's memoir. I think the eye-level graphics were a very important part of the day, drawing people toward the table to see the paper and the t-shirt even with little or no interaction with us. This was simple, effective and attractive. Use decent art materials.

We knew we wanted to reach people with the "July 4th challenge" idea, the editorial's content, with the full punch provided by the final paragraphs, and we came up with the following after a few attempts.

We decided to literally ask people, "Have you taken the July 4th Challenge?" And it was very appropriate for the scene on this busy shopping corner. If people were a little shy or something we'd tell them "it'll only take a minute", (or a phrase like that, anything, to fill the awkward gap). We started to get lots of people to stop to hear the challenge: "Looking over the past 100 years, can you cite a 10 year stretch in which the U.S. did not go to a foreign country and start a war, outright or by proxy?" And people would all say, "No". And we'd say, "You're right, there hasn't been a ten year period without the U.S. involved in war. Now here's the second part of the challenge: Given that analysis, the truth about the U.S. and its imperialist aims, doesn't it follow that we have a responsibility to go even deeper analysing this, and further, seek a solution?" And people overwhelmingly said, "Yes". Then we'd explain that that is what this paper does every week -- analyses and puts forward the solution, revolution. And this interaction led to further discussion (but not long talks usually) and often people got the paper off the challenge, the t-shirt and CD, sometimes an email adress or way to be in touch.

Make sure to let people know that this effort is a fundraiser for the paper! We got 2, 3, 5 dollar contributions on that tip alone. We had a guy come by and say, "Just imagine what it would be like if lots and lots of people were wearing that shirt!" And imagine if many more people were reading and contributing to this paper.

We thought it was a pretty good day and we look forward to the next 3 days using the paper.

Who wants to go to Orchard Beach Tuesday?! Write us back with ideas about where else to take Revolution paper.

(Note, we sold "kits" for $12 that included t-shirt and CD.)

We sold 13 t-shirts (all for $10 except 1) $124.00
We sold 113 papers (averaging .50 ea) 59.16
CDs 6.00
DVD sample 3.00
subs 0.00
Total $192.16


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